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Thứ hai, 11 Tháng 7 2011 06:51


Bước đi trong tỉnh lặng
Mỗi bước nhịp thở đều
Tâm an nhiên tự tại
Mầu nhiệm biết bao nhiêu.

Thiền hành còn gọi là thiền đi. Đi là một động tác vận động rất tốt cho cơ thể. Ngày nay, người ta khuyến khích và cổ động cho phương pháp đi bộ nầy. Đi bộ được coi là một bộ môn thể dục rất tốt cho sức khỏe, nhứt là đối với những người trọng tuổi cần phải tập đi thiền nhiều lần trong ngày. Ở đây, chúng ta đi thiền, ngoài việc vận động cơ thể ra, nó còn là một cách thực tập thiền rất dễ chịu và an lạc.

Thiền hành khác với kinh hành. Thiền hành là ta đi trong tĩnh lặng và sáng suốt. Không niệm Phật ra tiếng như kinh hành. Khi đi, ta giữ mỗi bước đi thật đều đặn, không cần đi nhanh lắm. Đi một cách thoải mái và tự nhiên. Phải đi trong tư thế vững chãi và thảnh thơi.  Đi theo nhịp thở đều. Mỗi bước chân ta đi là một chữ của câu hiệu Phật. Như bước đầu là chữ Nam, bước kế là chữ Mô. Cứ như thế mà tiếp tục. Tâm ta gắn liền từng chữ của câu hiệu Phật theo mỗi nhịp bước chân. Không phải đợi đến khi thiền hành, ta mới thực tập như thế. Trong đạo tràng, nhứt là trong những ngày tu học thọ bát, ta phải cố gắng thực tập cho mình có những bước chân đi vững chãi và thảnh thơi như thế.

Khi di chuyển đi đâu, dù chỉ vài ba thước, ta cũng phải tập đi thiền hay đi trong tịnh độ. Phương pháp tập đi thiền nầy, giúp cho ta có được một nội lực thật an bình và hạnh phúc hằng ngày. Hãy cố gắng thực tập ngay đi, thì chúng ta sẽ thấy sự hiệu nghiệm của nó. Đã lâu rồi, chúng ta thật sự chưa biết đi những bước đi hạnh phúc. Chúng ta đi trong phiền muộn, đi với những nỗi lo âu sợ hãi. Đi như một con ma đói đang bị hành hạ từng bước nặng trĩu khổ đau. Bây giờ, ta nhứt định không còn những bước đi sầu khổ, tiêu cực, héo mòn đó nữa. Đi không mong tới và cũng không có dự án, tính toán trong đầu. Chính những thứ mong mỏi, dự án tính toán đã làm cho ta nhức đầu đau khổ nhiều rồi. Ta hãy mạnh dạn quăng hết những gánh nặng lo âu, tính toán đó, để cho những bước chân đi của ta thật sự thành những dấu ấn an lạc, vững chãi và thảnh thơi trên mặt đất.


Many meditation exercises, such as the above "mindfulness of breathing", are practiced while sitting. However, walking is commonly alternated with sitting as a form for meditation. Apart from giving you different things to notice, it's a skilful way to energize the practice if the calming effect of sitting is making you dull.

If you have access to some open land, measure off about 25-30 paces' length of level ground 
(or a clearly defined pathway between two trees), as your meditation path. Stand at one end of the path, 
and compose your mind on the sensations of the body. First, let the attention rest on the feeling of the 
body standing upright, with the arms hanging naturally and the hands lightly clasped in front or behind. 
Allow the eyes to gaze at a point about three meters in front of you at ground level, thus avoiding visual distraction. 
Now, walk gently, at a deliberate but "normal" pace, to the end of the path. Stop. Focus on the body standing for the period of a couple of breaths. Turn, and walk back again. While walking, be aware of the general flow of physical sensations, or more closely direct your attention to the feet. The exercise for the mind is to keep bringing its attention back to the sensation of the feet touching the ground, the spaces between each step, and the feelings of stopping and starting.

Of course, the mind will wander. So it is important to cultivate patience, and the resolve to begin again. Adjust the pace to suit your state of mind -- vigorous when drowsy or trapped in obsessive thought, firm but gentle when restless and impatient. At the end of the path, stop; breathe in and out; "let go" of any restlessness, worry, calm, bliss, memories or opinions about yourself. The "inner chatter" may stop momentarily, or fade out. Begin again. In this way you continually refresh the mind, and allow it to settle at its own rate.

In more confined spaces, alter the length of the path to suit what is available. Alternatively, you can circumambulate a room, pausing after each circumambulation for a few moments of standing. This period of standing can be extended to several minutes, using "body sweeping".

Walking brings energy and fluidity into the practice, so keep your pace steady and just let changing conditions pass through the mind. Rather than expecting the mind to be as still as it might be while sitting, contemplate the flow of phenomena. It is remarkable how many times we can become engrossed in a train of thought -- arriving at the end of the path and "coming to" with a start! -- but it is natural for our untrained minds to become absorbed in thoughts and moods. So instead of giving in to impatience, learn how to let go, and begin again. A sense of ease and calm may then arise, allowing the mind to become open and clear in a natural, unforced way.

By Matthew Flickstein

In addition to sitting, one can practice a walking form of insight meditation. There are many benefits to this type of practice. For example, if our legs get cramped after sitting for long periods of time, walking meditation provides the opportunity to stretch them.

The greatest value from walking meditation is that it supports the arising of insight. Through walking meditation we are able to see how a psychological act of intention precedes each physical movement. We can observe how each action is comprised of many sub-movements that arise and pass away with incredible speed.

We can also experience how each movement, together with the intention that precedes it, is impermanent and unsatisfactory and occurs with the presence of a self.

Meditators usually alternate between the sitting and walking forms of meditation. The typical sequence is either forty-five minutes of sitting and fifteen minutes of walking, or sixty minutes of sitting and thirty minutes of walking. Please read the following instructions and then practice your first walking meditation session.

Walking Meditation Instructions

To practice walking meditation, find a straight and level walkway which continues for about twenty-five feet. This path length prevents you from having to constantly stop and turn around to continue walking. A longer path would not be suitable, since without the need to stop occasionally, it would be too easy for your mind to drift and lose its concentration.

•         Each of the following steps are to be performed in slow motion. As you walk, cultivate momentary concentration, apply the principles of bare attention, and observe the three characteristics of your experience.

•         Begin with both feet touching the floor and with your hands at your sides. Stay in this posture for about a minute, until your concentration is centered on the rise and fall of the breath (see figure 14).

•         Slowly raise your hands and place the palm of one hand on your abdomen and the palm of the other hand on top of the first. (Which hand is placed on top does not matter.) Look down at the ground at a point about three feet in front of you (see figure 15).

•         Your mouth is closed and you are breathing through your nose. You are going to coordinate the stages of the walking process with your breath.

•         Begin by slowly raising the heel of your right foot and coordinating this movement with your inhalation.

•         After lifting the right heel (with your toes still touching the ground), maintain this posture and slowly exhale (see figure 16).

•         As you raise your right foot off the floor and shift it forward, slowly inhale (figure 17).

•         Drop your right foot to the floor and slowly exhale at the same time (figure 18).

•         As you begin lifting the heel of your left foot, coordinating it with your inhalation, move your body slightly forward to maintain your balance. After the left hell is lifted (with your toes still touching the ground), maintain this posture and slowly exhale (see figure 19).

•         As you raise your left foot off the floor and shift it forward (a short distance beyond your right foot), slowly inhale (figure 20).

•         Drop your left foot to the floor and slowly exhale at the same time (figure 21).

•         As you once again begin lifting the heel of your right foot, coordinating it with your inhalation, move your body slightly forward to maintain your balance (figure 22).

•         Continue with the slow walking movements. When you reach the end of the walkway, stop and drop your hands to your sides. Stay in this posture for a short while until your concentration is centered on the rise and fall of your breath.

•         Raise your hands, placing them on your abdomen as you did before, and begin turning around. Lift the heel of your right foot, raise that foot off the floor, shift it toward the right, and slowly drop it to the floor. Then, lift the heel of your left foot, raise that foot off the floor, shift it toward the right, and slowly drop it to the floor parallel to the right foot. Repeat the sequence of steps until the turn is completed. Coordinate each ofyour turning movements with your breath as you did when walking straight ahead.

•         When you complete your turn and are facing the length of the path once again, drop your hands to your sides. Remain in this posture until your concentration is centered on the rise and fall of your breath.

•         Repeat the entire sequence for the duration of the meditation session.

In summary, the walking process involves four stages: lifting, raising, shifting, and dropping. Your inhalation is coordinated with the lifting movement of the heel of your foot and your exhalation with keeping your foot lifted, while your toes are still touching the ground. Your inhalation is coordinated with the raising and shifting movements and your exhalation with the dropping of your foot. While you are coordinating your breath with your physical movements, remember to pay bare attention to what is taking place; avoid making judgments, decisions, or comments.

Observe the impermanent nature of your walking experience: the intention that precedes each movement, the movement itself, and every breath which rises and falls from moment-to-moment. When your mind shifts to another object of awareness, focus on seeing that it is also impermanent. Then, gently but firmly, place your attention back on your walking movements, coordinating them with your breath.

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Lần cập nhật cuối lúc Thứ bảy, 23 Tháng 7 2011 01:08
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