Meditating after eating

Micheal Kush, modified 8 Years ago.

Meditating after eating

Posts: 34 Join Date: 6/6/12 Recent Posts
After eating a big meal, i waited two hours till i began meditating. However, even though the session was somewhat successful, my stomach was struggling and it felt heavy.
I thought waiting two hours would be enough.

How long should i wait after a meal to meditation.
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fivebells ., modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 566 Join Date: 2/25/11 Recent Posts
Depends on the size of the meal. I only eat one big meal a day, and I find that it takes about four hours for my stomach to clear and as much as eight hours for digestion to settle down completely. You can include the experience of digestion in meditation, though. emoticon Also, smaller meals will be processed faster.
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katy steger, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 1745 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
You can just meditate, even right after eating (and of course while eating, but that can seem like a strain at first...like "let me just eat already, enough training!"). Tiredness and heaviness are great objects of attention

Further, it will help your metta on a number of fronts.
Micheal Kush, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 34 Join Date: 6/6/12 Recent Posts
katy steger:
You can just meditate, even right after eating (and of course while eating, but that can seem like a strain at first...like "let me just eat already, enough training!"). Tiredness and heaviness are great objects of attention

Further, it will help your metta on a number of fronts.


True but when i try to attempt my attention to the breath, the heaviness in my stomach distracts and irritates me to the point where it becomes overwhelming. Also how can it help metta? Should i focus on tht during metta or ???
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katy steger, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 1745 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
Micheal Kush:
katy steger:
You can just meditate, even right after eating (and of course while eating, but that can seem like a strain at first...like "let me just eat already, enough training!"). Tiredness and heaviness are great objects of attention

Further, it will help your metta on a number of fronts.


True but when i try to attempt my attention to the breath, the heaviness in my stomach distracts and irritates me to the point where it becomes overwhelming. Also how can it help metta? Should i focus on tht during metta or ???


This is already excellent, Michael. You know the feeling of heaviness, irritation and overwhelmingness.

How will this help your metta? In what society do you live? Even India is facing a massive weight-based diabetic crisis. If you're in England or North America, well there's a lot of eating-heaviness-tired-irritated-overwhelmed-don't-want-to-see-myself-during-these-feelings stuff.

This is meditation. This is the route of freedom. Through the body and the mind, with willingness and steadiness like a patient, caring nurse. What would we do if our nurse saw us with bed sores and just said, "I'll be back in x-hours, when those are gone". Meditation is the supreme nurse attending the mind. You are called to theravadan, thus see the teachings of the Tathāgata as the medicine and the Tathāgata as directing doctor. Where does the doctor advise "going away some where" while such important symptoms are arising: irritation, overwhelmedness, heaviness, tired? As a monk, someday you will be the nurse to many many people.

We tend to have compassion for hungry feelings - we get those every two to four hours, no? But bloated feelings? Why avoid those?

To sit with everything you've described - your awareness of what is too much eating, heaviness, tiredness, irritation, and being overwhelmed - I hope you don't underestimate these seeds of metta. Even if you cannot imagine the plant, these are seeds.

edit: I just edited your name
Micheal Kush, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 34 Join Date: 6/6/12 Recent Posts
katy steger:
Micheal Kush:
katy steger:
You can just meditate, even right after eating (and of course while eating, but that can seem like a strain at first...like "let me just eat already, enough training!"). Tiredness and heaviness are great objects of attention

Further, it will help your metta on a number of fronts.


True but when i try to attempt my attention to the breath, the heaviness in my stomach distracts and irritates me to the point where it becomes overwhelming. Also how can it help metta? Should i focus on tht during metta or ???


This is already excellent, Michael. You know the feeling of heaviness, irritation and overwhelmingness.

How will this help your metta? In what society do you live? Even India is facing a massive weight-based diabetic crisis. If you're in England or North America, well there's a lot of eating-heaviness-tired-irritated-overwhelmed-don't-want-to-see-myself-during-these-feelings stuff.

This is meditation. This is the route of freedom. Through the body and the mind, with willingness and steadiness like a patient, caring nurse. What would we do if our nurse saw us with bed sores and just said, "I'll be back in x-hours, when those are gone". Meditation is the supreme nurse attending the mind. You are called to theravadan, thus see the teachings of the Tathāgata as the medicine and the Tathāgata as directing doctor. Where does the doctor advise "going away some where" while such important symptoms are arising: irritation, overwhelmedness, heaviness, tired? As a monk, someday you will be the nurse to many many people.

We tend to have compassion for hungry feelings - we get those every two to four hours, no? But bloated feelings? Why avoid those?

To sit with everything you've described - your awareness of what is too much eating, heaviness, tiredness, irritation, and being overwhelmed - I hope you don't underestimate these seeds of metta. Even if you cannot imagine the plant, these are seeds.

edit: I just edited your name


So your saying i should focus my metta concentration on the irritation, overwhelmingness etc. ?
And i think i get what you mean with the allusion to india in which it is an development of empathy. I mean i love doing metta meditation just for the sake that it improves my awareness concerning the suffering of certian beings but my only problem i noticed is applying it more to daily life. To people, freinds, animals and others and all such situations.

I hope your right regarding the path and the route i am taking. Anyways thanks for the info and advice
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fivebells ., modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 566 Join Date: 2/25/11 Recent Posts
Micheal Kush:
So your saying i should focus my metta concentration on the irritation, overwhelmingness etc. ?
I highly recommend this practice. Don't push it, though. If you start to experience resistance you can do a kind of tonglen where you experience the irritating feeling on the inbreath and metta for something easier on the outbreath.
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katy steger, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 1745 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts

So your saying i should focus my metta concentration on the irritation, overwhelmingness etc. ?
And i think i get what you mean with the allusion to india in which it is an development of empathy. I mean i love doing metta meditation just for the sake that it improves my awareness concerning the suffering of certian beings but my only problem i noticed is applying it more to daily life. To people, freinds, animals and others and all such situations.

I hope your right regarding the path and the route i am taking. Anyways thanks for the info and advice
I have been responding to your two threads. The other thread mentions your resolution which I understood to be metta. I am a bit confused.

Also, I am not "right" about the path and route you are taking. I am not sure what that path is. Since you express wanting to be a theravadan monk, I suggested a monk who teaches by internet, supplied his contact means and have encouraged you to get instruction from monastics.

What happens in your daily life that seems not to be metta?

-------------------EDIT:

So your saying i should focus my metta concentration on the irritation, overwhelmingness etc. ?
Yes: one sits with emotion not attached to them. It is not so easy to do this with hard emotions and discomfort; so one has metta for oneself, knowing one is training in observing what the mind is doing impulsively (impulsive thoughts and impulsive feelings) without acting on those impulsive thoughts and feelings.

For example, if I am sitting and my stomach is too full and I am sleepy and irritated, then these things can be sincerely observed. The observation is being done to train your mind, but also to train your own empathy. If you have empathy for yourself, you will probably have the basis for empathy for others. Because you recognize and study the/your causes of your stress, you can study and recognize the causes of other people's stress (or at least know to ask them to share their experience as they know it, to help them to become willing to learn from their own experience).

And i think i get what you mean with the allusion to india in which it is an development of empathy.
Here I mean that as a monk - even if you were to become a recluse - people will seek you out for practice advice and solace. Someone may say, "I've been trying to meditate after eating and..." or "I cannot stop eating and heard meditation can help..." or something and your personal study - your personal friendly study of yourself will allow you to have some skill in hearing this person and possibly counseling them in how to meditate on their stressor. Heaviness, eating, food, fatigue are symptoms of the eating disorders developing in countries all around the developed world.

Truly, because your interest in monastic life is so specific, I recommend again that you reach out to a monastic for some guidance. From my point of view, if you can field these questions with lay persons like us on the DhO, then I assume you can also field these same questions with someone like Bhante Yuttadhammo via the internet link provided in the other thread. Truly, I think answers from him or someone of his tradition will be more appropriate for you based on your specificity of monastic interest.

Ok, best wishes
Micheal Kush, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 34 Join Date: 6/6/12 Recent Posts
katy steger:



What happens in your daily life that seems not to be metta
katy steger:
?


Well for one thing, i feel that whenever spending time with friends, i feel the need to express or feel the loving kindness when in their company. I understand that this doesnt mean giving them compliments or hugging them all day, however whenever with them i just have an equinomous feeling. And yes, thanks for the recommendation, i emailed him abd hope to get back somwthing back soon. So, my goal is to really stick with equanimity but also apply metta to my daily living, lately though ive been preoccupied with breathing meditation so it hinders my practice of metta slightly vecause idnt do it everyday.

But anyways thanks for the advice and i will apply that little note you have me earlier. Appreciate it,

Best wishes
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katy steger, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 1745 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
Ok, cheers, Mike. I appreciate your thoughts, too.

Also, in case it benefits from saying, I only speak for me: I bow out once you've contacted a monk for advice (since you've mentioned ordaining). But I am only speaking for me.

If it is your inclination to continue to seek advice here, please know there is nothing wrong with that (not that you need my permission, but I don't know if I've influenced you in this regard) - I do not wish to convey that and hope my replies have not been an affront to your inquiry here in general. It can be very useful to take in many angles of experience, though it can be confusing as well.

This dharmic meditation is a path of becoming unfettered, regardless. Good luck with it whatever road(s) you take.
Micheal Kush, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 34 Join Date: 6/6/12 Recent Posts
I completely appreciate the advice and information. Yes i do understand that i should be more open minded to other types of expuerences and pathways most conducive to my investigation. So far, ive been thinking of joining blue cliff up in New York because it is most close to my home, not too far. It is a Zen monastery which is making me hesitant to join. Its not that zen in particular is bad or anything, as a matter of fact they are one of my top choices but im looking forward to more of a Theravada monastery as their goals are much more inclined to mine.

Thanks for help and best wishes
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katy steger, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 1745 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
Chuang Yen Monastery is not far from Blue Cliff (relatively) and there resides a few Theravadan monks as well as monastics from other Buddhist traditions. It is a campus that welcomes so many types of buddhist teaching and teachers, lay and monastic alike, including a talk on karma in the Tibetan Yogacara tradition this past weekend. You may be able to stay there/visit and consult with them. A volunteer with a car may be available to pick people up at Garrison station on the Metro North line. It is, of course, very considerate and useful to contact them beforehand and see if there is a gentle rapport. I am personally grateful to this monastery.

Also, Bhante Dhammadipa Thero (thomas, xing-kong) will be there this October for a three-week retreat (brahma viharas): he is also Theravadan-tradition and all manner of practitioners (tibetan, pure land, zen, etc) have joined his previous retreats to my knowledge. To participate in such a retreat it may be useful to introduce yourself well in advance. I think many teachers reasonably have concerns about new/unknown practitioners on retreat.

[redacted after perusing info on the BAUS website]
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katy steger, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 1745 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
These are also great feelings with which to develop concentration. Tiredness can often cause great alertness when it is the object of focus with a practitioner who has conviction in the teaching (maybe not the first effort, but it comes).

Again, no straining/pressure is needed. One can just decide "I'll set the timer for 15 minutes and mind as best as I can at each moment the tiredness and the heaviness"

Ven. Yuttdhammo has a yotube on coffee and staying up all night in meditation, what different monks do. It is 7+ minutes. (It has a nice comment about gamblers, too, in case the gamblers are reading).

best wishes
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Brian K., modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Meditating after eating

Posts: 142 Join Date: 4/18/12 Recent Posts
I would just eat something lighter, or cleaner, like i usually just have some oatmeal in the morning with coffee,tea or maybe soymilk, depending, before i meditate. I personally always prefer to eat before i meditate so i dont have to worry about hunger during meditation. Maybe look into some foods that are known to help suppress appetite. For example I've heard dark chocolate is an appetite suppressant, it seems to work for me when im hungry i have a piece and generally the hunger goes away. So maybe eat something like this before you meditate to avoid eating a heavy meal and also avoid hunger in meditation that might be distracting, then have your meal afterwards

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