This is the second of a series of reviews of the Seven Awakening Factors, with the first talk as an overview of the factors on June 3, 2020, posted on June 4. Sati (sah-tee), translated as mindfulness, is perhaps the most important characteristic of the mind to be cultivated during the process of Awakening. Mindfulness as an awakening factor has the function of monitoring the presence or absence of the other six factors as well as supporting the most appropriate and effective coordination of these factors. Peter provides a brief history of the application of sati in Buddhist history and reviewes how it operates in relation to supporting the other factors, based on the practice of mindfulness of breathing meditation. Passages from the Satipatthana Sutta are read to emphasize the refrain in each of the four foundations that repeatedly urges atapi sati sampajanna (ah-tah-pee sah-tee sahm-pah-jah-nyah), diligent, mindful, clearly knowing what arises in the mind in an ongoing way. The explanations are followed by a brief question and answer period to clarify how mindfulness can be applied in the context of challenging decision-making, focused on two approaches: one is to be mindful of how the mind can be balanced as the information and solution stages are developed and the other is of monitoring during the process of applying a solution, alert to changes in circumstances that might alter the intended outcome and requiring a different approach.
Here are the notes prepared for this talk: Working With The Mindfulness Awakening Factor
The topic for next week’s meeting is the cultivation of dhamma vicaya (dah-mah vih-chah-yah), the investigation of mental phenomena, another of the Seven Awakening Factors.