Orlando Insight Meditation Group

A Contemporary Buddhist Mindfulness Meditation Community For Central Florida

The Six Beautiful Pairs of Cetasikas October 14, 2020

This talk reviews the benefits of coordinating the previously reviewed Universal Wholesome Cetasikas, resulting in the manifestation of the Six Beautiful Pairs: tranquility of mind and mental factors, lightness of mind and mental factors, pliancy of mind and mental factors, wieldiness of mind and mental factors, proficiency of mind and mental factors and uprightness of mind and mental factors.  The “mind” reflects the reflective capacity of consciousness and “mental factors” represent those categories of mind conditioning factors called cetasikas; when these are skillfully coordinated, one’s consciousness operates at a higher level of clarity, discipline and accuracy in the process of Awakening.  Each of these cetasikas is reviewed individually, with Peter describing the classical Buddhist rendering as well as his personal experience of them, typically fully realized during a residential retreat.  This talk is meant to be accompanied by the recording of the guided meditation presented before this meeting entitled “Guided Alerting The Mind Meditation”, which can be found in the website archives.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  SIX PAIRS OF WHOLESOME CETASIKAS

Next week’s talk will focus on the Wholesome Cetasikas of Right Speech, Right Action and Right Mindfulness as they can be understood and applied in the context of current cultural distress and confusion resulting from the pandemic, political turmoil and environmental dysfunction.

Guided Alerting The Mind Meditation

This training meditation is intended to suggest ways to cultivate awareness of what are called the “Six Beautiful Pairs” of cetasikas, categories of mind that promote self-states that are free from dukkha, distress and confusion.  These qualities are manifested through thorough and persistent investigation of the cycles of breathing in and breathing out mindfully.  The pairs represent beneficial pairings of sankhara, mind conditioning factors and the mind that reflects them in awareness.  The pairs are: tranquility, lightness, pliancy, wieldiness, proficiency and uprightness.  There is an accompanying posted recording entitled “The Six Beautiful Pairs of Cetasikas–October 14, 2020” that reviews and clarifies these cetasikas, which can be found in the archive.

Cultivating Equanimity October 7, 2020

This talk reviews the Universal Wholesome Cetasika of Upekkha (ooh-peh-kah),Equanimity, which provides balanced functioning in the mind that is free from dukkha, distress and confusion.  The review emphasizes the balance of energy–avoiding too much excitement or too much tranquility–with attention, avoiding too much identification or too much skepticism–producing the quality of mind that supports the process of Awakening.  Equanimity is also described as the factor that brings balance to lovingkindness, compassion and sympathetic joy.  Peter relates upekkha to another important and synonymous concept, tatramajjhattata (tah-trah-muh-jah-tah-tah), which literally is translated as “that which is found in the middle”, emphasizing the development of mindfulness, investigation of mental phenomena and Right Effort to foster this balancing.  There is an accompanying recording entitled “Guided Cultivating Equanimity Meditation” found in the archives of this site that suggests the practice of mindfulness of breathing for this cultivation.  This description is followed by a question and answer period to clarify the concept and practice.

Here are the notes accompanying this talk, including a graphic illustrating the interactions between energy and cognition that are reviewed during the talk:  Cultivating Equanimity

The topic for next week’s talk is the realization of the “Six Beautiful Pairs” of Wholesome Cetasikas.

Guided Cultivating Equanimity Meditation

This guided meditation focuses on cultivating a quality of attention that balances emotional energy and cognitive labeling.  In the untrained mind, there can be either too much excitement or too much sedation, or too much identification or too much skepticism; equanimity creates the optimal levels of energy and attention that support the process of Awakening.  During the training suggestions are provided in the practice of mindfulness of breathing meditation that encourage the application of mindfulness, investigation of mental phenomena and Right Effort to foster the cultivation of equanimity.

Reviewing Non-Attachment and Non-Aversion September 30, 2020

This talk reviews alobha (non-attachment) and adosa (non-aversion), two of the Universal Wholesome Cetasikas, categories of mind conditioning functions that participate in the shaping of each moment of self-experience that is free from dukkha–distress and confusion.  During the talk Peter reviews each of these conditioning elements individually and then describes how they coordinate in their functioning.  Non-Attachment is essential in the process of understanding anatta, the absence of an enduring, autonomous self, a concept that is a core element of Buddhist liberation philosophy.  Non-Aversion is also recognizable as metta, lovingkindness, another key practice of Buddhist liberation philosophy.  This description is followed by questions and comments by those participating in the Zoom meeting.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Reviewing NonAttachment and NonAversion

Next week’s talk will focus on reviewing Equanimity

Guided Non-Attachment and Non-Aversion Meditation

This training meditation focuses on two of the Universal Wholesome Cetasikas, alobha (non-attachment) and adosa (non-aversion).  The meditation suggests how to use mindful investigation of the breath sensations to develop enough sensitivity of insight to observe the ephemeral, dreamlike and transitory nature of internal narratives, the “selfing story”.  This insight supports viewing the flow of subjective experience as an impersonal process, a natural phenomenon, not a self, and this skillful practice manifests as non-attachment.  The same approach of using mindful awareness of uncomfortable and unpleasant subjective experience as ephemeral and transitory leads to a non-reactive characteristic of subjective experience, non-aversion.  This meditation is meant to support the Dharma talk that was presented afterwards: “Reviewing Non-Attachment and Non-Aversion”.