- The Eight Ways of Recollecting Death
- I As having the appearance of a murderer.
- Death is like a murderer that is born along with a person and follows him all life long with a drawn sword and may at any time lop off his head.
- II As the ruin of success.
- No matter what riches, beauty, power or fame a being may have, it will all come to nought with death.
- III By comparison in seven ways:
“Monks, for one whose awareness-release through good will is cultivated, developed, pursued, handed the reins and taken as a basis, given a grounding, steadied, consolidated, and well-undertaken, eleven benefits can be expected. Which eleven?
“One sleeps easily, wakes easily, dreams no evil dreams. One is dear to human beings, dear to non-human beings. The devas protect one. Neither fire, poison, nor weapons can touch one. One’s mind gains concentration quickly. One’s complexion is bright.
One dies unconfused and — if penetrating no higher — is headed for the Brahma worlds.
translated from the Pali by
I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One, on a wandering tour among the Kurus with a large community of monks, arrived at Thullakotthita, a town of the Kurus. The brahmans & householders of Thullakotthita heard it said, “Gotama the contemplative — the son of the Sakyans, having gone forth from the Sakyan clan — has arrived at Thullakotthita. And of that Master Gotama this fine reputation has spread: ‘He is indeed a Blessed One, worthy, & rightly self-awakened, consummate in knowledge & conduct, well-gone, a knower of the cosmos, an unexcelled trainer of those persons ready to be tamed, teacher of human & divine beings, awakened, blessed.
adapted from the Vissudhimagga
There are seven Factors of Enlightenment given by the Buddha. Of these, Mindfulness is the foremost. It must be developed at all times in full measure. The other six fall into two groups, those which tend to exert the mind when it needs to be exerted, and those that subdue the mind when it needs to be subdued. One important facet of Mindfulness is to determine which factor needs developing.
The following list gives the methods recommended for developing each factor.