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Boris, January 17, 2010 in General Discussion
You are already mindful. Having enlightened mind isn't a choice you make...it's our natural condition! So 'mindfulness' isn't something you practice.
Having your attention of breathing at the nose is calming, and this is why Buddhists use that spot.
Having your attention at the dantien is also calming...and it's grounding, healing and empowering.
So dantien breathing is really the most ideal method. And it's still "mindfulness".
Thanks TaoCow and Scotty,
Scotty, you say having your attention at the dan tien is better than at the nose. Why do you think so? Do you know if there are any budhist schools in London that have the dan tien as their main point of focus? I like to meditate but I also like to meditate with other people sometimes. This is one of my reasons why budhism is interesting for me. There are many accesible schools around. I have not come across any Taoist 'groups' in London, but that might be just me.
TaoCow, you say it's fine to combine both practices. I have in fact already done some experimenting and when I do practice mindfulness and dan tien meditation after each other I feel a very strong energy current in my head and nose. Something that was not so strong before I only did the mindfulness. Almost to the point that it feels almost like a head ache. This can not be right, can it?
boris, perhaps some embryonic breathing would be what you're looking for. it absolutely requires mindfulness to kick start things, until you can drop stuff and simply be aware try a natural abdominal breath and right when you get to the top, gently lower the huiyin-dantien-diaphragm to start the inhale in a gradual and gentle fashion and ignore your nose as if your air passageways did not even exist - you'll feel the air just pass by, and once you've calmed your system enough, you wont feel the air move. so its ostensibly beginning and drawing breath from a very low point (ldt) - that helps soften the diaphragm and will let the heart rest peacefully and comfortably in the breath dynamic. with practice, of course
A common overgeneralization is that Buddhists focus on cultivating the mind (essence), while Taoists cultivate both the mind & body, essence & energy...
In fact, many Taoist sects incorporated Ch'an Buddhist meditation into their practice. I do that myself too - breathe from the dantian while stopping & emptying my mind.