Enlightenment at home

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Eric M W, modified 6 Years ago.

Enlightenment at home

Posts: 288 Join Date: 3/19/14 Recent Posts
From the Wikipedia article on Dipa Ma:

In 1967, she moved to Calcutta where she taught meditation to a wide range of students. Her first formal student was her neighbor, Malati Barua, a widow trying to raise six young children alone. Malati presented an interesting challenge: she was eager to meditate but unable to leave her house. Dipa Ma, believing that enlightenment was possible in any environment, devised practices that her new student, a breastfeeding mother, could carry out at home. In one such practice, she taught Malati to steadfastly notice the sensations of the suckling infant at her breast, with complete presence of mind, for the duration of each nursing period. This amounted to hours each day and, as Dipa Ma had hoped, Malati attained the first stage of enlightenment without ever leaving her house. When someone asked Dipa Ma if she found her worldly concerns as a single mother and dutiful grandmother a hindrance, she said:

My worldly concerns are not a hindrance, because whatever I do, the meditation is there. It never really leaves me. Even when I'm talking, I'm meditating. When I'm eating or thinking about my daughter, that doesn't hinder the meditation.

Inspiring, yes? emoticon
Adam Dietrich Ringle, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 685 Join Date: 12/4/11 Recent Posts
The question that pops into my head quite often is:

Is it possible to reach arahatship while at home? I know that Daniel and Kenneth both talk about getting their attainments while on retreat. I would be curious to understand any motives, impulses, etc that accompanied the desire to go on retreat in the first place.

Edit: If I remember correctly they both also report getting such an "attainment" while taking a walk, which is interesting.
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Eric M W, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 288 Join Date: 3/19/14 Recent Posts
There was a guy who used to post on KFD who, apparently, attained arahatship at home without any retreats. I think his username was cmarti??? His entire practice journal is posted somewhere on Awake Network.

I made it up to EQ without any retreats or even much formal sitting, but the dark night sucked pretty hard for a year. I'm still pre-path but I'm hoping to do some kind of retreat in the near future, but it's hard with three kids and one on the way. emoticon
Robin Woods, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 155 Join Date: 5/28/12 Recent Posts
I managed to get pretty 'enlightened' (to the extent that my brain now seems to default to mindfulness more often than to the memory/planning/fantasy circuit) whilst practicing over a year and a half mainly at work. It struck me that the people on KFD who made the most progress were the ones who started to blur the distinction between 'cushion time' and the 'rest of their lives' as early as possible. I've noted on the toilet, in meetings, at lunchtimes, on stairwells, on conference calls, whilst filling the photocopier.....

Probably much easier if you have a shitty, mind-numbing job like mine but I'm pretty sure that this is the key to the whole thing if you can't afford retreats for whatever reason. I didn't actually do that much sitting in the dark with my eyes closed.

Anyways, apologies if this is obvious but I think beginners would benefit from this advice.

http://thehamiltonproject.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/yogi-toolbox-gathering-momentum-at-work.html
Adam Dietrich Ringle, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 685 Join Date: 12/4/11 Recent Posts
Robin Woods:
I managed to get pretty 'enlightened' (to the extent that my brain now seems to default to mindfulness more often than to the memory/planning/fantasy circuit) whilst practicing over a year and a half mainly at work.



For me the memory/planning/fantasy circuit is not separate from mindfulness practice. I would just call these different objects of mindfulness.
Robin Woods, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 155 Join Date: 5/28/12 Recent Posts
Adam Dietrich Ringle:
Robin Woods:
I managed to get pretty 'enlightened' (to the extent that my brain now seems to default to mindfulness more often than to the memory/planning/fantasy circuit) whilst practicing over a year and a half mainly at work.



For me the memory/planning/fantasy circuit is not separate from mindfulness practice. I would just call these different objects of mindfulness.


Yep - ok - I take your point. But there's a world of difference between being consciously aware in real-time of the arising and passing of mental images and talk and being unconsciously ''lost' in it 50-90%(?) of the time in the sorry state we were in before we found this awesome website isn't there? Also - the 'circuit' does tend to dry up as soon as you become aware of it in operation doesn't it?
Adam Dietrich Ringle, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 685 Join Date: 12/4/11 Recent Posts
You got me there.
Robin Woods, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 155 Join Date: 5/28/12 Recent Posts
Adam Dietrich Ringle:
You got me there.


Shit - sorry! Didn't mean to 'get' anyone. I think I'm better now at actually just doing this practice than trying to understand it or talk about it so maybe I'll just get on with that! emoticon
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Eric M W, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 288 Join Date: 3/19/14 Recent Posts
If I could be proficient at "mindful daydreaming" I'd be fully enlightened next week. emoticon
Robin Woods, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 155 Join Date: 5/28/12 Recent Posts
Eric M W:
If I could be proficient at "mindful daydreaming" I'd be fully enlightened next week. emoticon


Haha - we've all been there!!

It really is just a habit. The more of it you do the more you can do. Your brain will repeatedly rebel at the ludicrous simplicity of it all. But it's the habit that makes you realize everything else is also just a habit emoticon

It really is worth it!

Christ - getting all a bit evangelical about it. I'll Stay Off The Internet for a bit.....
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Dream Walker, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Enlightenment at home

Posts: 1312 Join Date: 1/18/12 Recent Posts
I got to first path as a stay at home dad with a baby. Evey time the baby slept I napped/meditated on the recliner listening to binaural beats. I had just read "My Big Toe" and it got me into meditation. I got the flu and apparently found the Dukkha door while sleeping...I kept loosing consciousness in the recliner and at the gym sauna and per another author I called it clicking out. I did not find MCTB until I looked up different phrases for 3 dimensional black space (Boundless space/5th jhana)...
It is definitely possible to get to first path at home, without a good practice, without retreats, without knowing much about Buddhism, etc...I would say it is probably rare though. There are things that were in my favor I believe.
I would recommend stacking all the best practices that you have available.
Good luck,
~D

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