During this talk Peter reviews Viriya, the Energy Awakening Factor, which, when combined with the Mindfulness and Investigation of Mental Phenomena Awakening Factors, coordinates and empowers the remaining 4 Awakening Factors. Peter talked of the manifestation of Viriya as Right Effort in the Noble Eightfold Path, with four attributes: to deny unwholesome states, support the arising of wholesome states, enabling wholesome states to reach fulfillment and prevent the future arising of unwholesome states. His review was followed by discussion of how participants can further understand and contemplate this quality of attention.
Here are the notes prepared for this talk: The Energy Awakening Factor
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This contemplation focuses attention on how the energy of attention is managed in the mind’s creation of a self. During the meditation, Peter suggests how mindfulness and investigation are associated with the energy awakening factor to reduce the likelihood that attention will be captured by any of the five hindrances, then applied to activate the remaining Awakening Factors, Joy, Tranquility, Concentration and Equanimity.
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This talk explores Viriya Bojjhanga, translated as the Energy Awakening Factor. Peter quoted Daniel Siegel’s suggestion that “the mind… regulates the flow of energy and information”, that is, we are energy transforming organisms. In Buddhist psychology, energy is related to Right Effort of the Eightfold Path, among other beneficial categories. He suggested that the practice of mindfulness of breathing meditation channels energy away from unwholesome self-organizing processes and builds neural networks that are wholesome and mindfully channeling the energy of attention through the Seven Awakening Factors. This was followed by general group discussion of how the practice of channeling energy through mindful Right Effort brings benefit.
Here are the notes prepared for this talk: Transforming Energy Into Awakening
Next week’s topic will focus on the Awakening Factor of Joy/Enthusiastic Interest.
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During this talk, the exploration of the 52 cetasikas, categories that condition how the mind creates a self continues. The focus is the Universal Cetasikas, that is mind conditioning categories that occasionally coordinate with the Universal Cetasikas. These occasional cetasikas are vitakka, (aiming attention at a mind object), vicara, (sustained attention regarding a mind object), adhimokkha, (conviction or determination regarding a mind object’s formation), viriya (energy or persistence regarding the emerging mind object formation), piti, (enthusiasm regarding the emerging mind object formation) and chanda, (will to do, that is, the activating of the emerging mind object formation).
These mind conditioners co-operate with the Universal Cetasikas; these combinations are then aligned either with unwholesome cetasikas (producing dukkha, that is, confusion and distress) or wholesome cetasikas (producing liberation from dukkha).
Peter talked about how the simple practice of mindfulness of breathing supports liberation because mindfulness (a wholesome mind conditioner), when combined with vitakka, vicara and viriya supports deeper insights into how self-state organization is manifested, in the moment of becoming a self.
This was followed by discussion by the other meditators regarding how this understanding of self-organization processes is of benefit for dedicated meditators.
Here are the notes prepared for this talk: the-occasional-cetasikas
During this dialogue, Peter reviewed how certain of the cetasikas (mind conditioning factors) can be associated with the word “commitment”. The purpose of these comparisons is to set the stage for revisiting the Buddhist precepts in order to understand the core virtues they represent and develop a contemporary usage. The cetasikas reviewed are cetana (volition), vitakka (applied attention), vicara (investigative attention), adhimokkha (determination), viriya (energy), piti (enthusiasm), and chanda (zeal).