Then, Bāhiya, here is how you should train: In the heard, there will be just the heard; .....When there is, for you, in the heard just the heard; ........ then you are not by that. When you are not by that, then you are not there. When you are not there, then you are neither here nor beyond, nor in between the two. Just this is the end of suffering. (The Buddha Udāna 1.10)
Back: Insight 29: Mindfulness of Seeing.
Next: Insight 31: Mindfulness of Smelling.
During this meditation, you develop your sensitivity to movements of attention towards the experience of the sense door of hearing by using external sound and a bell to observe and develop an inclination in your mind to disentangle awareness from habitual grasping of the heard.
Learning to observe awareness of hearing creates a grounding for mindfulness within daily life and also the ability to observe attraction or aversion as they arise towards what is heard.
This sensitivity allows you to soften into your relationship towards what is heard, deconditioning any habitual pattern of attraction or aversion through mindful non-participation.
Conditions: It is helpful to meditate in a place with sound or to put on some quiet music in the background. Play games with this and do not always put on pleasant music or expose yourself to only pleasant situations. Learn to soften into any subtle habitual aversion you may experience.
For this meditation you will also need a bell or can set up bell chimes using insight timer.
Step 1: Sit in meditation, gently closing your eyes.
Step 2: Establish mindfulness of your body as you sit in meditation.
Step 3: Bring your awareness to the flow of change within sound as it comes into you and soften listening.
Step 4: Bring your awareness to the flow of breathing within your body in a very general way. Be careful of developing too much samadhi instead relaxing your mental grip so that you can be distracted. Observe breathing experience and awareness as two separate experiences.
Step 5: Come out of formal meditation and strike a bell, observing the sound. Observe your mind create the idea ‘a bell’.
Step 6: Disentangle your awareness from the sensory world by developing nirvikalpa samadhi (stillness) as in Meditation 43 for the rest of your meditation session, continuing to incline your mind towards letting go of habitual sensory experiencing.
You are ready to progress to Insight 31: Mindfulness of Smelling when:
You can clearly experience:
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