Saturday, October 21, 2006

There are many types of meditative stabilization

There are many types of meditative stabilisation, but let us explain calm abiding (samatha) here. The nature of calm abiding is the one-pointed abiding on any object without distraction of a mind conjoined with a bliss of physical and mental pliancy. If it is supplemented with taking refuge, it is a Buddhist practice; and if it is supplemented with an aspiration to highest enlightenment for the sake of all sentient beings, it is a Mahayana practice. Its merits are that, if one has achieved calm abiding, one's mind and body are pervaded by joy and bliss; one can--through the power of its mental and physical pliancy--set the mind on any virtuous object one chooses; and many special qualities such as clairvoyance and emanations are attained.

--from The Buddhism of Tibet by the Dalai Lama, translated and edited by Jeffrey Hopkins, published by Snow Lion Publications

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