This training meditation reviews the fundamental application of attention called vitakka and its accompanying mind conditioning factor vicara, which maintains focused attention. The practice involves intentionally aiming attention at the beginning of the in-breath and then sustaining that attention for the duration of the in-breath, then repeating this routine for the out-breath. The persistence of a determined intention to maintain this routine is encouraged periodically during the meditation. When attention is inevitably drawn away, the practice involves repeating the vitakka/vicara in order to interrupt the potential for the distraction to become a hindrance, returning attention to the breathing process again. As practice matures, vitakka/vicara become “blended”, manifesting as one of the 7 Awakening Factors, Investigation of Mental Phenomena.
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