Sunday, October 2, 2016 – “Samatha and Vipashyana” – by Sokuzan

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It is often taught that one should begin with samatha practice (sanskrit; mindfulness meditation, calming abiding, resting the mind) by using the technique of observing the breath and labeling thinking before vipashyana (sanskrit; panoramic awareness, openness, seeing not two) occurs. After many years of his own pracitice and of teaching others, Sokuzan sees the importance of starting off with samatha and vipashyana together by holding still and watching what continues to move, trusting the mind to rest on whatever needs to be observed. This is the practice of “shikantaza” (Japanese) or sitting, observing “just precisely this”.