Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Bill's big Dharma/Sadhana cheat sheet

This is my big cheat sheet of Sadhana practices
and other related background material,
which has come from a 2.5 year study*
of Eastern/Indian Wisdom (Yoga, Buddhism, Vedanta),
and related healing modes & creation technologies.
(* began fall 2007)


I hope an inquiry into this material
helps someone be free from their suffering.

I. Introduction:

The first section deals with background into the Yoga / Vedanta and/or Buddhist systems
and may be helpful to know about before the discussion of the practices themselves.

Four Stages of Life

1: Learn the Game (Brahmacharya ashram): celibate student, age 0-20
2: Play the Game (Grihastha ashram): householder, hedonist, citizen, worker, age 20-50
3: Reflect on the Game (Vanaprastha hermitage): retirement, forest dweller, age 50-70
4: Exit Gracefully (Sannyasa): complete non-attachment from society and the fruits of action, spiritual purification, moksha, age: 70+

The ages are only approximate and customary.
People can abandon Householder life and enter Vanaprastha or Sannyasa at any time.

These are called the Four Ashramas in Hinduism.

Eight Winds of the Householder

During the longest stage of life, the Householder,
our lives are blown about by the Eight Winds,
or Eight Worldly Conditions or Vicissitudes
  • gain/loss,
    lābha / alābha

  • fame/disrepute
    yasa / ayasa

  • praise/blame,
    pasamsā / nindā

  • pleasure/pain
    sukha / dukkha
The Buddha said:

"A truly wise man will not be carried away by any of the eight winds:
prosperity/decline, honor/disgrace, praise/censure, happiness/suffering. He is neither elated by prosperity nor grieved by decline. The heavenly gods will surely protect one who does not bend before the eight winds."

Attha (eight) loka (worldly) dhamma (laws)

Atthalokadhamma (From the Lokavipatti Sutta)

Professions of the Householder
We tend to work in different professions.
Four are identified in the ancient texts:
  • priests (brahmanas v. 42)
  • warriors, lawmakers, diplomats, administrators (ksatriyas v.43)
  • craftsmen, merchants, tradesmen (vaishas v. 44)
  • laborers(sudras v.45)
Others also exist:
  • teachers, artists, journalists
  • mothers, caregivers, doctors, healers
Bhagavad Gita ch. 18 v.41-45
Three Goals of the Householder

This stage of our life is dominated by two goals:
  • Sense Pleasures (kama)
    • food, sex, drugs
    • travel, relationships, adventures, life drama,
    • intellectual pursuits, ideas, books, television,
    • entertainment, arts, aesthetics
  • Security, Wealth (artha)
  • Law, Duty, Ethics (dharma)
One eventually learns none of these brings lasting happiness or a sense of completeness.
This is when the final goal is sought
  • Release from the cycles of suffering and rebirth (moksha)

All stages of life require ethics and practice

All stages of life require ethics and practice, as if life is lived
without ethics or practice, great suffering is created.
  • sadhana (spiritual practice), and
  • dharma (ethics)

II. List of Dharmas and Sadhana Practices

As you read this list, see how some are contained in others.
See how these are all related.
  • Four Yogas:
    • Jñāna: Intellectual Study (scriptures, sacred texts, spiritual lectures)
    • Raja/Ashtanga/Eight-Limbs/Dhyana: Meditation or Prayer (stillness, intention, gratitude, concentration)
    • Bhakti: Devotion, Praise, Ecstasy,
    • Karma: Service to others
  • Eight Limbs of Yoga
    • Code of conduct, duties to self and others
    • Postures
    • Breath Control,
    • Sense-Withdrawal,
    • Meditation: Concentration, Awareness of Being, Non-dual absorption.
  • Yamas (shall nots)
    • Non-violence, Truthfulness, Non-stealing/Non-coveting, Divine Conduct, Patience/Here-Now practice, perseverance, compassion, modesty,
  • Niyamas (shalls)
    • keeping body, mind, and speech pure, contentment, (heat) austerity/asceticism/mortification, study, self-surrender
  • Four Brahmaviharias
    • Sympathetic Joy
    • Loving-Kindness/Benevolence,
    • Compassion,
    • Equanimity:

      This last one has many names and is celebrated in many traditions:

      Non-discriminating mind, calm mind, citta vritti nirodha (yoga), hashlamah, upeksha (Sanskrit), uppeka (Pali), Stoic virtue, stoic apatheia, calm, patience, non-attachment, Gelassenheit or Abgescheidenheit, undisturbed peacefulness, dispassion, non-attachment, allowing, patience, acceptance, pratyahara (sense withdrawal), observing w/o reacting.

  • Tonglen (Tibetan Buddhist)
    • Pranayama (in-breath taking-on / out-breath releasing), combined with
    • increase a sense of renunciation / taking on suffering (of others)
    • reduce selfish attachment
    • create positive karma by giving and helping
    • develop and expand loving-kindness and bodhicitta
  • Ho'oponopono (Polynesia)
    • Repentance,
    • Forgiveness
    • Gratitude / Transmutation,
  • Eightfold Path of Buddhism:
    • Wisdom (Right View and Intention)
    • Ethics (Right Speech, Action, and Livelihood
    • Mental Discipline (Effort, Mindfulness, and Concentration)
  • Six Perfections:
    • giving, ethics, patience, joyous effort, concentration and wisdom.
  • Four Foundations of Mindfulness (noticing practice)
    • Mindfulness of breath and body
    • Mindfulness of emotions
    • Mindfulness of our own thoughts, energy, affect (consciousness)
    • Mindfulness of dhammas
      • factors of enlightenment
      • mental hindrances
      • perceptions and sense-organs
      • the cause of and the cessation of suffering
  • Seven Factors of Enlightenment
    • Mindfulness, Investigation, Energy, Joy/Rapture, Relaxation/Tranquility, Concentration, Equanimity
  • Ten Paramitas
    • generosity
    • virtuous conduct
    • renunciation
    • transcendental wisdom / insight
    • diligence, effort
    • patience, tolerance, acceptance, endurance, forbearance
    • truthfulness
    • determination
    • loving-kindness
    • serenity
  • Louise Hay
    • Self-love, Self-nurturing, Self-healing
    • Allowing practice
    • Replace the bad story with a better story
  • Nonviolent Communication (NVC -- system developed by Marshall Rosenberg)
    • Connect with others with compassion, empathy, and presence
    • See and express feelings and needs without judgment or attachment
    • Mindfulness of OFNR as consciousness model
    • Observation, Feelings, Needs, Request
  • Abraham-Hicks and Wayne Dyer (creation technology)
    • Desire which is aligned with Source
    • Allowing, Visualization
    • Gratitude
  • A Course in Miracles
    • Forgiveness
    • Waking up from the dream of separation
  • Toltec / Don Miguel Ruiz
    • Waking up from the dream of separation
    • Ideas and words are creative
    • The ego is the monkey mind. All suffering is created here.
    • Love is the ground state of being, which must be cultivated with compassion and care.
  • Vedanta:
    • Waking up from the dream of separation
    • Using logic and the insight of experience to discover the truth
      • neither ethics, wealth, nor sense pleasures bring a lasting sense of completeness or happiness
      • the true self is not the body or ego, but the eternal witnessing awareness
  • Mickey Method:
    • Sit in stillness, while you
    • Visualize all of your needs are met
    • Spend time in the ecstasy of this moment!
  • Emotional Freedom Technique
    • Viscerally stimulate your body w/tapping, while you
    • perform allowing practice/affirmation
  • Eckhart Tolle
    • Stillness, Presence, Noticing

Hindrances, Kleshas, Poisons, Fetters
  • Three Poisons (Buddhism)
    • Delusion, Anger, Greed,
  • Five Kleshas (Yoga Sutras)
    • Ignorance, Craving, Aversion, Ego, Fear of Death
    • All the others are contained in the first: Ignorance
  • Five Hindrances (SN 46.37)
    • Sensual desire, Anger or Ill-will, Sloth/torpor or boredom, Restlessness/excitability/worry, Doubt
  • Eight Fetters (MN 54)
    • Destroying life, stealing, false speech, slander, coveting and greed, aversion, anger and malice, conceit
  • Ten Fetters (Pali Canon SN 45.179 -180)
    • Belief in an individual self, doubt or uncertainty (of the teachings), attachment to rites and rituals, sensual desire, ill will, lust for material existance, lust for immaterial existance, pride-conceit-arrogance, restlessness/distraction, ignorance.
  • Ten Fetters (Dhs. 1113-34)
    • Sensual desire, anger, pride in self, views, doubt, rites and rituals, lust for existence, jealousy, greed, ignorance

Dimensions of Conscious Experience
(This is my version and slightly different from the standard Buddhist Five Aggregates of Mind)
  • Perceptions (5 sense organs + body sensations)
  • Intellect/Cognitive Mind
    • Thoughts, Knowing, Naming, Judging, Opinions, Ideas, Views
    • Reason, Logic, Induction, Deduction
    • Preferences (Likes/Dislikes)
    • Sense of Separate Self, Ego
    • Time (Past/Future)
    • Memory
    • Imagination, Fantasy, Creativity
  • Feelings (Emotions + Body Sensations) (pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral)
  • Affect (Resisting, attachment, desire, craving, aversion --or-- allowing, patience, compassion),
  • Energy (sloth, efficient/appropriate, hyperactivity)
  • Impulse / Will / Volition
  • Action
Four Stages of Enlightenment
  • stream-entry Sotāpanna
    • kleshas (hindrances): Identity View, Skeptical Doubt, Clinging to Rites and Rituals
  • once-returning Sakadagami
    • Fetters: Sense Desire, Ill Will
  • non-returning Anāgāmī
    • Fetters: Clinging to fine-material-existance (first 4 jhanas), Clinging to fine-immaterial-existance (last four jhanas), conceit, restlessness, and ignorance.
  • Arahant

Seven Stages of Wisdom / Jnana Bhumikas
  1. Subheccha (desire for truth, enlightenment, everlasting happiness)
  2. Vicharana (investigation, self-enquiry, though contact w/teacher)
  3. Tanumanasi (the quiet mind, thread-like mind, transparent mind,
    "making mind your tool, and then put the tool aside" -- Peter Marshand)
  4. Sattvapatti (attainment of purity, purest most harmonious form of energy, instantly can touch inner bliss of self, self-realization, always choice to be happy or to be at peace)
  5. Asamsakti (utter detachment)
  6. Padartha (unbroken awareness of the Absolute Self)
  7. Turiya (the fourth state beyond waking, dream and sleep, beyond self and non-self)
Also: this is great, "Enlightenment, the Concept" by PeterPandoer at Youtube (Peter Marchand)

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