The Mindfulness and Confidence Cetasikas, September 16, 2020

The two reviews during this talk, focused on sati and saddha (mindfulness and confidence), represent the first two of the “Universal Wholesome Cetasikas”, within the full listing of 52 cetasikas found in the Buddhist commentaries.  During the talk the fundamental benefits that are the consequence of cultivating anapanasati, mindfulness of breathing meditation, are reviewed.  Peter described the relationship between sati and the remaining six of the Seven Awakening Factors, as the monitor of the coordinated actions of these factors in shaping the experience of “selfing”, the goal of which is to find liberation from dukkha, that is, relief from distress and confusion.  As mindfulness becomes more workable in one’s life, confidence regarding the benefits of regular and diligent mindfulness meditation increases, providing what is contemporaneously termed “self efficacy”, confidence in one’s ability to manage the stresses we are confronted with in current life experience.  There is an accompanying guided meditation recording, “Guided Mindfulness With Confidence Meditation” that is posted and found in the guided meditation archive.  The review is followed by a brief question and comment opportunity.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Mindfulness and Confidence

Next week’s talk will review the next two of the Universal Wholesome Cetasikas, Hiri (clear conscience) and Ottappa (respect for consequences).  These two mind conditioners support cultivating the virtue aggregate of the Noble Eightfold Path:  Right Speech, Right Action and Right Livelihood.


Guided Cultivating Mindfulness With Confidence Meditation

This meditation focuses on the first two of the listed “Universal Wholesome Cetasikas”, Confidence and Mindfulness, in the complete list of 52 cetasikas found in Buddhist commentaries.  The emphasis during this training exercise is on diligent and persistently mindful attention focused on the sensations noticed while practicing mindfulness of breathing meditation.  The commentaries state that when mindfulness is present in each moment of self-formation, there will be no dukkha, that is, no distress and confusion.  It is suggested that each time the attention becomes “enchanted” with a thought process through craving and clinging, intentionally becoming mindful of that process as impersonal and conditional will intervene in the craving and clinging.  This intervention, combined with redirecting attention back to the breath sensations, will release the mind from dukkha.  As this practice becomes more repeatable and routine over time, the wholesome cetasika of confidence will be strengthened, with great benefit.  This meditation is intended to accompany studying the talk entitled “Mindfulness and Confidence”, recorded the same day, after this meditation.