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Meditation as a Perfection

Prezi examining meditation as one of the Six Perfections of the Bodhisattva path.

Jack Lale

on 7 November 2012

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Transcript of Meditation as a Perfection

Meditation Samadhi Why is Meditation a Perfection? Generosity (dana) Ethics (sila) Patience (ksanti) Energy (virya) Meditation (samadhi) Wisdom (prajna) The Six Perfections Meditation is seen as crucial to developing oneself in Buddhism regardless of school: the Buddha gained enlightenment through meditation, and through it one can gain wisdom. Meditation is something that comes into many different areas of the Bodhisattva path, as it allows beings to contemplate on the effects of something else. Dhyanaparamita Meditation as a perfection should be considered as a set of qualities rather than strictly as a practical thing - qualities to perfect such as thoughtfulness, contemplation and calmness. Avalokitesvara: Embodiment of compassion. These qualities are the foundation of either a Bodhisattva or an enlightened being in general. The Perfection of Meditation is important for the Bodhisattva: "At this stage the Bodhisattva's ethical awareness is so thoroughly and securely developed that his his mind is unlikely to be corrupted." (Nagapriya) The Perfection of meditation leads to the ability to distinguish between the two levels of truth within Buddhism: conventional and ultimate. The Perfection comes after that of energy, as it takes great effort to reach the perfection of meditation, and before that of wisdom as it leads to the ability to see the true nature of things. Loop of positive feedback Loop of positive feedback Loop of positive feedback Calming meditation Insight meditation Calming meditation is used to calm and focus the mind, whilst at the same time developing positive qualities such as friendliness, compassion and equanimity. More basic type of meditation than insight meditation, and it is the stage arguably more focused on the qualities of meditation. 'Dhyana' Insight meditation differs from calming meditation in so far that it cultivates thinking, not the single-minded focus of calming meditation. It is based around giving rise to 'enlightened thoughts', those which perceive reality without delusion. The word 'dhyana' is actually the word for a profound state of consciousness, as opposed to meditation (which is samadhi). This was chosen for the perfections (the paramitas), as it is intended that it is the state of consciousness that should be perfected, not one's ability to meditate. Some people may deduct from this that therefore insight meditation has no place in this perfection. However, this view is too narrow as insight meditation is far too important to be dismissed out of hand like this. One could be in a state of higher consciousness and use insight meditation to allow them to realise the true experience of those higher states themselves. Comparisons to the Therevada path Meditation is important throughout Buddhism, and so therefore can also be found within Therevada Buddhism. The third 'way' of the Eightfold Path to Enlightenment path is the way of meditation or Samadhi. This comprises three steps: effort, mindfulness and contemplation/concentration The Six Perfections are followed more as a step by step path than the Therevada Eightfold path, which is more focused on everything which needs to be first attained. Meditation as a Perfection is more based upon the qualities of meditation, as opposed to the practice itself.
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