Strong determination sit

Matt Jon Rousseau, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 6:21 AM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 6:21 AM

Strong determination sit

Posts: 111 Join Date: 5/1/22 Recent Posts
I usually  meditate for solid 1 hour sits. Concentrating on the breath.   There is usually some pain towards  the end.  I was thinking  of working  in 1 sds a week of 2 hours of sitting.  I think I will  do mindfulness  of the body. Especially the pain.   I heard  people can have strong   breakthrough experiences doing this.  What do you guys think? 
Martin, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 10:07 AM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 10:07 AM

RE: Strong determination sit

Posts: 497 Join Date: 4/25/20 Recent Posts
It's a big jump from 1 hour to 2. I have found it easier to increase in ten- or fifteen-minute intervals. I have had some interesting and even useful experiences with longer sits but another thing that can be useful is multiple sits, even multiple shorter sits. There are lots of fun (and not so fun) options. But, of course, the strong determination sit is not really supposed to be easy. Anyway, bottom line, long sits have been helpful for me. 
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Jim Smith, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 3:57 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 3:55 PM

RE: Strong determination sit

Posts: 1218 Join Date: 1/17/15 Recent Posts
Matt Jon Rousseau
I usually  meditate for solid 1 hour sits. Concentrating on the breath.   There is usually some pain towards  the end.  I was thinking  of working  in 1 sds a week of 2 hours of sitting.  I think I will  do mindfulness  of the body. Especially the pain.   I heard  people can have strong   breakthrough experiences doing this.  What do you guys think? 

It depends what is hurting. I would advise against doing anything that could cause an injury.

I have some medical problems that cause pain but because of my practice I find that psychologically I am not suffering the way most people would, so I think I am qualified to contribute to this thread...

The way to practice with pain that I find helpful involves two related aspects, either of them alone can be helpful and together they work better.

1) Try to distinguish between the physical sensations of pain and the psychological "suffering" - the mental anguish. See if just noticing that helps to relieve the mental anguish - without that aspect the physical pain is much easier to bear.

2) Try some type of meditation that will produce tranquility/serenity, calm the mind, and or elevate the mood. When the mind is at peace the pain is much easier to bear, you find you are not obsessing over it and you are able to focus on other things. Any type of relaxing meditation is good, if you can produce sukha through jhana meditation, or metta, or the afterglow of cesation/fruition that can be good too.

Like you, I've also heard that sitting in painful postures can lead to breakthroughs but I never pushed myself to do that, I think life gives us enough to work with without having to go looking for more suffering.
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Jim Smith, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 4:05 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 4:04 PM

RE: Strong determination sit

Posts: 1218 Join Date: 1/17/15 Recent Posts
Jim Smith

It depends what is hurting. I would advise against doing anything that could cause an injury.

...


If I wanted to work with pain without the risk of injuring myself, I would try eating very spicy pepper sauce. I've read the spicy aspect is caused because the molecules in the hot spice bind directly to pain receptors. So instead of risking an injury to my knees or spine I would just eat some hot sauce before meditating in a comfortable chair.
Matt Jon Rousseau, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 4:27 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 4:27 PM

RE: Strong determination sit

Posts: 111 Join Date: 5/1/22 Recent Posts
My posture is simple. I sit in a chair. 2 feet on the floor  and don't use the back rest. My hands on my thighs.  Nothing is straining 
Martin, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 5:57 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 5:57 PM

RE: Strong determination sit

Posts: 497 Join Date: 4/25/20 Recent Posts
I started with that sitting posture. I found it a lot more comfortable and stable to kneel with a bench or sit cross-legged with a zafu. It's worth looking into if you are in it for the long haul.

By the way, I found a trick, early on, for dealing with sitting pain. You take it as the object of meditation. You know how, if you try to keep the attention on the breath, eventually it wanders, and the breath is no longer in consciousness. The same holds true for pain (at least the kind of pain that isn't caused by some kind of real damage). What is more, once you see that happen a few times, the pain kind of loses its power to cause anguish. 
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Jim Smith, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 7:47 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 7:47 PM

RE: Strong determination sit

Posts: 1218 Join Date: 1/17/15 Recent Posts
Matt Jon Rousseau
My posture is simple. I sit in a chair. 2 feet on the floor  and don't use the back rest. My hands on my thighs.  Nothing is straining 


Where does it hurt? If you feel pain there is usually a reason. If your back hurts even if you are sitting on a chair it could be a sign preceding an injury.

When I've been on retreat, or in long public sits at the Zen center, we would do walking meditation for 5-10 minutes after every 40 minutes of sitting meditation.

Have you tried something like that? If you don't have room to do walking meditation you could do stretches, or relaxing types of yoga, tai chi, or qigong
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Jim Smith, modified 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 7:57 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 8/2/22 7:57 PM

RE: Strong determination sit

Posts: 1218 Join Date: 1/17/15 Recent Posts
Jim Smith
Matt Jon Rousseau
My posture is simple. I sit in a chair. 2 feet on the floor  and don't use the back rest. My hands on my thighs.  Nothing is straining 


Where does it hurt? If you feel pain there is usually a reason. If your back hurts even if you are sitting on a chair it could be a sign preceding an injury.



I don't know if they do this everywhere but at some group meditations / retreats if you have a really bad posture they will correct you. If you are going to sit through pain it is not necessarily the same if you are on retreat compared to sitting alone.

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