Pali Word ‘Vipassanā’ and Bhāvanā’ are two words with same meaning. In Pali word Vipassanā’, ‘Vi’ means which is something very deep and ‘Passanā’ means see with deep Philosophy, thinking or idea. So, the inner meaning of ‘Vipassanā’ is insight that means higher philosophy and deep thinking. So, which is locally known as ‘Bhāvanā’ , internationally it is known as Meditation. Meditation is the source of deep thinking which finds the way to get rid of all sufferings. ‘Vipassanā’ is very important step for ‘Sādhanā’. To get the real taste of pure mind which is free from all attraction, one has to meditate ‘Sīlā ,‘Samādhi ’ and ‘Paññā '. Tathāgata Buddha spent every period of his life for finding out the right way of meditate mind. Without concentration one can’t acquire real knowledge. This is eternal truth.
Origin of Buddhist Meditation and development:
At the beginning of the world awareness comes from human mind. Human being was born with human mind. The Buddha was known about meditation before his enlightenment. For example when his age was seven, the great king Suddhadhana went to join Halakarsana festival with prince. During the period of festival, the prince Siddhartha sat under a tree and practiced meditation. That means his thinking; awareness and concentration came automatically from his human mind. After than, when he left his family life at the age of 29th and he met with great sages Rāmputta Uddak and Ārāl Kālām. They were both historical figure and they had vast knowledge about two early Brahmanic literatures such as Upanisad and Moksadharma. The Buddha was taught by Ārāl Kālām and Rāmputta Uddak, as stated in the literature of numerous early Buddhist sects, is historically authentic. Ārāl Kālām and Uddak Rāmputta taught a form of early Brahmanic meditation. The Buddha must consequently have been trained in a meditative school whose ideology was provided by the philosophical portion of early Upanisad . The teachings that Buddha received from his teachers can reach him up to Moksha Dharma stage but he was not satisfied with that. He developed the skills and discovered the way to reach Nirvana. The final goal to get freedom from sufferings
When Buddha was alive, he taught the people to practice Dharma in very simple way. That time whenever any confusion arose in the mind of his followers, they discussed it with Buddha and received the solution. After Mahāparinibbāna of Buddha, First and Second council were held and the followers of Buddha tried their best to record the true teachings of Buddha in Vinayā, Sutta and Abhidhammā. But as the times goes on, the conflict between different religious leaders became serious and many sects were created. Some of them are Bajrayana, Mahayana, Theravada and Zen. Among all sects, Theravada sects are still following the true teaching of Buddha. But I am not against other sects.
Meditation and Buddhist aspect:
One who is in practice of meditation can control his emotion and then his mind helps him to enjoy heavenly peace which is free from all sufferings. This matter is supported by Buddhism. It is very clear in Buddhist Philosophy that to achieve Nibbāna , it is essential to practice Meditation. To get success in personal, family, social and state life and there is no alternative of Meditation means concentration.
To cure one physically and mentally, meditation is very effective. Meditation is a magical medicine which is very useful for all diseases. Monks, devotees, Students-teachers, rich-poor, leader-follower and religious leaders all can control their anger and bring peace in mind through concentration and practice meditation. Meditation can help us in every step and in every moment of our life. Hope to get success without proper concentration is useless. So, it is said that none can get relief from sufferings without meditation.
Every human being on this earth is suffering from some physical and mental problem. So he wants to get relief from these sufferings. He is running like a bull for getting a little peace. To become free from all suffering Siddhāttha
Gautama left his family and through strong meditation he became Buddha, the man of knowledge, wisdom and power who came back for the welfare of common people. He preached his deep knowledge through very simple language and informed people that meditation can cure any kind of mental disease.
In the holy book Tripitakā , there mentioned many ways of meditation. One can easily reach his goal practicing any of those methods. This is why; meditation is given preference in the daily way of life in the whole world. Specially, to know himself, to understand other and to keep himself peacefully, meditation is very much effective.
Buddhist philosophy is practical philosophy. Buddha preached everything from his deep thought and thinking about the future. This is undoubtedly true that before Buddha Era starts, man used to meditate in mountain, hill and cave. This kind of practice and Buddhist meditation though sounds almost same but there are lots of difference between these two on Philosophical point of explanation .
In Yoga one can discover himself but that is not enough to destroy our thirst completely. But through Buddhist meditation, one can reach from mundane level to spiritual level,
through his efforts and practice. There is no separate rule for monk and family holders. There is a fixed and clear rule for everybody .For this reason, Buddhist meditation is widely accepted and practiced all over the world.
People believe in Buddhist Meditation not only for their religious belief but only for it can fulfill all their requirements. Now there is no fixed place for meditation. In bus, school, launch, steamer, for conducting state, in social revolution, for controlling one’s mind, everyone is trying to get success through meditation. And most of them are getting success. So, people take meditation as their last hope.
Our life is very short. So, it is necessary to practice meditation in every step of our life. But now Vipassanā (Buddhist meditation) brings revolution in the mind of the people. People are using and practicing Vipassanā from different point of view and the teachers who are teaching Vipassanā, they have some conflict on some terms of meditation.
What is Vipassanā?
To concentrate our find on one point, deep thinking, and right decision and to acquire the power for knowing everything on earth is simply called Vipassanā. New question is arising in the mind of the people everyday regarding life and the world. These questions are mainly on ‘the first source of life’. According to one group of scientist, from the molecules of matter first life is created. This is scientifically proved in their research centre. But some scientists and philosophers are not ready to accept this . This is why; they are telling to kill those scientists who are telling this type of things because this thing will destroy their belief in God. They believe that all the things of this universe sun, moon and even fruits all these things are created by some supreme power. They call this power by the name of God, Fate or Destiny. But the scientists who believe in science proved that others’ belief is not true. They can create life in scientific lab by discovering clone. Even they showed them by creating the life of Lamb, other animals and even human. This is why; the development of science brings revolution in the field of Philosophy . Before five hundred years of Jesus Christ’s birth and before one thousand years of Hazrat Mohammad’s birth, scientifically proved Buddhist Philosophy was created. To make the idea clear about source of first life, it is necessary to explain four noble truths and ‘Patityasamuppāda’ theory of Buddhist Philosophy.
In noble truths, it is clearly explained about sorrow, reasons for sufferings, source of sufferings and how to protect sufferings. Again in Patityasamuppāda theory, the source of sufferings in life and the way to protect sufferings is clearly explained from psychological point of view. These two subjects are supported by Buddhist philosophy and by other philosopher who don’t believe in blind faith. We can destroy the reasons of every suffering and it is explained in Four Noble Truths. Like that, every subject matter of this whole universe including action-reaction are clearly explained in Patityasamuppāda Theory. This is why; there is no contradiction between modern science and Buddhist Philosophy. Buddha preached ‘Anātthabād’ in so many years before and scientist brought new dimension in modern science by proving it again in scientific lab through the theory of JIN .
Vipassanā doesn’t mean fake emotion, imagination or believing any supreme power. Vipassanā means discover himself crossing all the barrier, watch himself with perfection, search for other’s existence in himself. Vipassanā means not the attraction of heavenly peace or fear of hell, Vipassanā search for proper explanation of every change, action and reaction of our body and mind. One can prove the existence of heaven and hell in himself through the Vipassanā. This is not imagination, for good deeds good results and for bad deed bad results. Heaven and hell is nothing but the state of good and bad. To dicover this, there is no alternative of Vipassanā.
Everyone expect to get happiness and tries to avoid sorrows. If one can get rid of sorrows, happiness automatically comes. There is no theory in Buddhism other than, four noble truths, Eight fold path and Patityasamuppāda.To practice Vipassanā on the basis of these theories and discover himself is known as Vipassanā.
Vipassanā in Buddhism and people who practice Vipassanā:
One who practise meditation on the basis of Buddhist philosophy is called Vipassanā. And through this meditation who wants to destroy all the sufferings of his mind is called the meditator of Vipassanā. The way of the meditator of Vipassanā is known as perfect way to practise Vipassanā. Through the meditation one can see the real state of sufferings and if he can destroy the reason of sufferings then he is free from all sufferings of the world. The meditator of Vipassanā tries to know the state of his mind and body again and again.
Men are living in the darkness of ignorance. And in Buddhist Philosophy ignorance is the main reason for sufferings. It is very difficult to cross this barrier. It is very necessary to practice Vipassanā to get rid of ignorance. The main thing of Tripataka is Satipattan Sutta and the explanation given about Four Noble truth and Satipatthāna Sutta. One who is a meditator of Vipassanā, he has to understand the theory of Satipatthāna Sutta, apply it and practice it for getting success in meditation. But at present some teachers are teaching Vipassanā with their little knowledge. This way, he is not getting success and can’t help the others. They are also making the condition more complicated.
In human life when man and woman involved in physical intercourse, child born after lot of troubles. Next they have to take care of their children and help him for their establishment. This is known as the responsibilities of parents. This is why, they doesn’t take it as sorrow. Day by day, they build the mountain of dream which is related with their child.
When they find their child in troubles, they take it as sorrow. Only by practicing Vipassanā, one can understand the real state of sorrow. This is why Vipassanā means to know himself.
Satipatthāna Sutta and Vipassanā Bhāvanā :
At present, in every religion it is told about meditation. The Mahavir, the founder of Jaina Religion, also told about the spiritual meditation. But the explanation of Vipassanā is quite different from other religion from Philosophical point of view. We can get the idea of Vipassanā if we truly study and practice Satipatthāna Sutta.The a main subject of Satipatthāna Sutta is four. These are called Kāyānudassanā Satipaţţhāna, Vedanānudassanaā Satipaţţhāna, Cittānudassanā Satipaţţhāna and Dhammānudassana Satipaţţhāna . On the basis of Satipaţţhāna Sutta, a meditator can understand the real state of body through Kāyānudassanā Satipaţţhāna, he can understand the feeling of joy-sorrow and negligence through Vedanānudassanaā Satipaţţhāna, he understand the greed-attraction-jealousy through Cittānudassanā Satipaţţhāna, he can get the proper knowledge about sixth senses through Dhammānudassana Satipaţţhāna. In Satipatthāna Sutta, explanation of 21 kinds of meditation is clearly given. A meditator can able to know himself practicing any of this process.
Ānapana Sati.and Meditation:
Ānapana Sati is one of the most important steps than other steps of Meditation. At present situation the practice of Ānapana Sati meditation is very forceful all over the world. The meditator or yogi meditate following by relationship between his belly up and down with his nose or breathing up-down with related body. We can separate Ānapana Pali word according to the grammatical rule. Āpana Sati. can be divided into two words one is Āan and another is Āpan. Here Aan means to get breath with nose and Āna means take out breath from nose. So Ānapana means Yogi or meditators who meditate according to breath get and come down the way from nose and relation between nose and belly. It is called Ānapana Sati.meditation.
The Ānapana Sati meditation was praised by the Lord Buddha. Everyone can destroy evil and ignorance of mind by practicing Ānapana Sati.Meditation. A maditator or Yogi who wish to practice or study Ānapana Sati. Sati Meditation they can easily and comfortably practice in forest or secluded place. The Yogi must keep concentration and relation breathing with nose and body at the beginning of Ānapana Sati meditation. Some times a new Yogi cannot concentrate of still mind without Ānapana the Ānapana Sati. Meditation can be practiced by the counting too. The Yogi try to create meditate mind according to breathing get in and breathing out from the nose.
The practitioners of Ānapana Sati. Meditation always keeps concentration to take breath in and leave breath. As a result, sometimes breathing is increased and decreased. On this mood the Yogi thinks about his death and become afraid of death. When it creates cause and fear in mind, then Yogi tries to destroy cause and fear with the meditate mind and concentration. Then Yogi understands himself and come to know his mind’s position perfectly. At the final stage he finds out the real path of freedom.
Practice of meditation at present all over the World:
Now-a-days an important message for all human beings all over the world is “Save yourself and save World” from the Global worming. Some great world researcher finds out from their research desk that a number of countries will go under water within 2050 because of climate change. So, Eastern and Western people became very conscious about this warming and send message everywhere “Save World, Save nature” and save yourself because we live in lap of nature. So if we want to save nature and ourselves we must control ourselves. But it is very difficult to control our six senses, emotion and act of awaking humanity without practice of meditation or Ānapana Sati. In this warming mood all nature scientists advised us to control our mind, save world and save ourselves with practice of meditation. Now I include here my own experience from UN climate Change conference in DENMARK, Copenhagen. The theme of conference subject “A change awareness and awaking mind” this gathering of approximately 30 spiritual leaders from all around the world took place in Copenhagen, Denmark. The conference is consisting both of private and public sessions. I was one of the members of the Conference. After every session all spiritual leaders and publics practice 10 minutes silent meditation. That means every participant wants to realize themselves and they could able to find out that the Earth is the only living place. I include here one quotation from hand out
“Living systems theory is a body of work that describes how all living systems function, how they sustain themselves and how they develop and change. Living system is a metaphor that represents an animate arrangement of parts and processes that continually affect one another over time. By definition, living systems are self organizing. They grow, they change, they connect, they are cyclic, and they are whole and systematic ”
That means all planets are animate and all animals want to live like as human. So, don’t cut tree or planet, don’t kill animals. The planet and animals always save the nature with silence. Every spiritual leader discusses and advised same view point practice meditation and understands nature. Practice meditation and realize yourselves. After then you could be able save Earth, save people and save yourselves. So, there is no alternative of practicing meditation for saving world.
Human life is full of problems and mystery. So we cannot bind problems one specific diagram. Our great master Lord Buddha went to find out 21 real paths from Mahā Sati Satipaţţhāna Sutta. Now-a-days many people got benefit with the practice of Mahā Sati Paţţhāna Sutta.
The important thing is that our lives are now full of troubles. So we cannot bind problems one specific diagram .Now it is very difficult to control our emotion and anger. Our minds are locked in greed-jealousy-attraction. But we have to save this world from destruction, hatred and war. If we want to get relief from all the problems and save the earth, we have to practice Vipassanā.
The teachings of all sects help people to develop their mind and to bring peace in mind. Though they are divided into different groups but they want to do work for the welfare of human mind . Buddha is their teacher and they are the followers. Besides Bidarsana, people now practicing meditation in different way for getting peace of mind .But I think the goal of every people is to get freedom from sufferings. Only the true teachings of Buddha help people to reach Nirvana.
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