Four applications of mindfulness
Four applications of mindfulness (Skt. catuḥ-smṛtyupasthāna; Tib. དྲན་པ་ཉེ་བར་བཞག་པ་བཞི་, Wyl. dran pa nye bar bzhag pa bzhi) sometimes translated as the four foundations of mindfulness refers to the close application of mindfulness to:
The Buddha's most detailed teaching on mindfulness is to be found in the Satipatthana Sutta (Pali). ‘Sati’ means ‘mindfulness’ and ‘patthana’ means application or ‘foundation’. There are four of these ‘Applications or Foundations of Mindfulness.’ four applications of mindfulness (smrty-upasthana):
Part of the thirty-seven branches or factors of enlightenment.
Training in the four applications or foundations of mindfulness enjoys a special place in the Theravadin tradition. But, the Four Foundations of Mindfulness also form part of the thirty-seven factors of enlightenment on the Mahayana path.
If one practices according to the mahayana, during the meditation session one meditates on the same things as being spacelike, beyond all conceptual constructs. In the post-meditation period one considers them as illusory and dreamlike.
- 1. In the basic yana, the focus is on our own body, feelings, and so forth, while in the mahayana, the focus is also on the bodies, feelings, and so forth, of others.
- 2. Again, in the basic yana, the focus is on the impurity aspect and so on, while in the mahayana the meditator concentrates on emptiness.
- 3. Finally, with regard to the purpose of this meditation, in the basic yana the practice is performed with a view to liberation from the impure body and so on, while in the mahayana this meditation is performed in order to attain complete enlightenment.
Khenpo Namdrol says:
- "When the shravakas practise the application of mindfulness of the body, they meditate on their body in the form of a skeleton, and concentrate on its impermanence, impurity and suffering nature. By contrast, the
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