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Buddhadharma : Winter 2007
winter 2007| 82 |buddhadharma aware of whatever arises without any further analysis. your five mental fac- ulties (confidence, energy, mindfulness, concentration, and insight knowledge) will then come into harmony, and your noting mind will become quicker than ever before. also, the objects—that is, the mental and physical phenomena—appear extremely quickly. For example, each time you breathe in, you clearly see that the rising movement of the abdomen con- sists of many segments. The same is true for other movements, such as the falling of the abdomen, bending, stretching, etc. you clearly experience subtle vibrations or touching sensations all over your body, arising very quickly one after another. some people experience fine sensations of itchiness or pricking that arise very quickly and instantly one after another. when the objects arise so quickly, you will not be able to keep up with the objects if you try to label or name each of them. Just be aware of them from moment to moment without naming them, so that you can follow them. if you want to name them, don’t try to name them all. when you label one object, you may become aware of four, five, or ten other objects. That’s not a problem. if you attempt to name all of the objects occurring, you may become tired. what matters most is to be aware of each object precisely and accurately. in this situation, you should note any objects coming in through the six sense-doors without following the normal procedure. Of course, if not- ing in this way does not go smoothly, you can always go back to the normal procedure. Distractions from the Path Because of the momentum of this vipas- sana insight, you are likely to see a bright light or experience rapture as a result of feeling great delight with both noting and noted objects. so you may get goose bumps, feel a tear roll down your cheek, or find the body shaking. you may have a “springy” feeling, which is often mis- taken for dizziness, or a light, comfort- able feeling that creeps over the whole body, as if you were rocking back and forth in a hammock. you may experi- ence a peaceful calm that makes you feel comfortable, regardless of whether you are sitting, reclining, standing, or in any other posture. Furthermore, due to the quality of lightness, both your mind and body will become so light, supple, and flexible that you will feel comfortable during long periods of sitting or reclin- ing, without any pain, heat, or stiffness. at this point, the noting mind and noted objects flow along concurrently and harmoniously. your mental atti- tude becomes straightforward. your mind avoids unwholesome activities and becomes extremely clear due to your strong faith and confidence. at times, this mental clarity may last for a long time, even without any object to be noted. when one is free from laziness and also not straining too much, a balanced effort becomes obvious. it seems as if the objects are known on their own accord, and so vipassana equanimity becomes apparent. you are likely to experience an unusual degree of very strong delight or happiness and become excited to tell oth- ers about it. however, to take delight in the bright light and other pleasant experiences is being on the wrong path. The correct path of insight is to just continue noting. if you keep this in mind and carry on with not- ing mental and physical phenomena that actually arise, your awareness becomes clearer and clearer, and every object you note helps you to realize impermanence, unsatisfactoriness, and not-self. after practicing for quite a while, you may feel satisfied with your practice and take a break every now and again, think- ing, “it can’t get any better than this. There can’t be anything else special to experience.” But don’t just relax when- ever you want. instead, practice for lon- ger and longer periods without taking a break. Disappearance and Disillusionment when your insight develops to the next stage, you no longer see objects arising; instead you only see them passing away. you think that they are disappearing faster and faster. you also see that the not- ing mind disappears one after the other. For example, when you note the rising of the abdomen, you clearly see how the tiny movements of rising instantly disappear and how the noting mind, too, vanishes very quickly. so you see that moments of both the rising movement and the aware- ➤ continued from page 61 North Atlantic Books Distributed by Random House www.rangjung.com TARA, THE TRUE WARRIOR and earliest known Buddhist feminist, vanquishes fear and ignorance. For instructions on how to do Tara practice, there is no book superior to this, covering everything from beginning to end. Skillful Grace Tara Practice for Our Times Teachings by Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche & Trulshik Adeu Rinpoche Translated & edited by Erik Pema Kunsang & Marcia Binder Schmidt $15.95 paperback