Ānāpānā, Ānāpānāssati, Ānāpānāsati,


Canonical 16 steps (thanissaro english transl.)

1) “dīghaṃ vā assasanto ‘dīghaṃ assasāmī’ti pajānāti,

"[1] Breathing in long, he discerns, 'I am breathing in long';
dīghaṃ vā passasanto ‘dīghaṃ passasāmī’ti pajānāti;
or breathing out long, he discerns, 'I am breathing out long.'
2) rassaṃ vā assasanto ‘rassaṃ assasāmī’ti pajānāti,
[2] Or breathing in short, he discerns, 'I am breathing in short';
rassaṃ vā passasanto ‘rassaṃ passasāmī’ti pajānāti;
or breathing out short, he discerns, 'I am breathing out short.'
3) ‘sabbakāyapaṭisaṃvedī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[3] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to the entire body.'[2]
‘sabbakāyapaṭisaṃvedī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to the entire body.'
4) ‘passambhayaṃ kāyasaṅkhāraṃ assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[4] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in calming bodily fabrication.'[3]
‘passambhayaṃ kāyasaṅkhāraṃ passasissāmī’ti sikkhati.
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out calming bodily fabrication.'

5) “‘pītipaṭisaṃvedī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
"[5] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to rapture.'
‘pītipaṭisaṃvedī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to rapture.'
6) ‘sukhapaṭisaṃvedī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[6] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to pleasure.'
‘sukhapaṭisaṃvedī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to pleasure.'
7) ‘cittasaṅkhārapaṭisaṃvedī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[7] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to mental fabrication.'[4]
‘cittasaṅkhārapaṭisaṃvedī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to mental fabrication.'
8) ‘passambhayaṃ cittasaṅkhāraṃ assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[8] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in calming mental fabrication.'
‘passambhayaṃ cittasaṅkhāraṃ passasissāmī’ti sikkhati.
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out calming mental fabrication.'

9) “‘cittapaṭisaṃvedī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
"[9] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to the mind.'
‘cittapaṭisaṃvedī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to the mind.'
10) ‘abhippamodayaṃ cittaṃ assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[10] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in satisfying the mind.'
‘abhippamodayaṃ cittaṃ passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out satisfying the mind.'
11) ‘samādahaṃ cittaṃ assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[11] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in steadying the mind.'
‘samādahaṃ cittaṃ passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out steadying the mind.'
12) ‘vimocayaṃ cittaṃ assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[12] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in releasing the mind.'
‘vimocayaṃ cittaṃ passasissāmī’ti sikkhati.
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out releasing the mind.'[5]

13) “‘aniccānupassī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
"[13] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on inconstancy.'
‘aniccānupassī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on inconstancy.'
14) ‘virāgānupassī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[14] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on dispassion [literally, fading].'
‘virāgānupassī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on dispassion.'
15) ‘nirodhānupassī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[15] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on cessation.'
‘nirodhānupassī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati;
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on cessation.'
16) ‘paṭinissaggānupassī assasissāmī’ti sikkhati,
[16] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on relinquishment.'
‘paṭinissaggānupassī passasissāmī’ti sikkhati.
He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on relinquishment.'

evaṃ bhāvitā kho, bhikkhave,
"This is how mindfulness of in-&-out breathing is developed & pursued so as to be of great fruit, of great benefit.
ānāpānassati evaṃ bahulīkatā mahapphalā hoti mahānisaṃsā.

1. To the fore (parimukham): The Abhidhamma takes an etymological approach to this term, defining it as around (pari-) the mouth (mukham). In the Vinaya, however, it is used in a context (Cv.V.27.4) where it undoubtedly means the front of the chest. There is also the possibility that the term could be used idiomatically as "to the front," which is how I have translated it here.
2. The commentaries insist that "body" here means the breath, but this is unlikely in this context, for the next step — without further explanation — refers to the breath as "bodily fabrication." If the Buddha were using two different terms to refer to the breath in such close proximity, he would have been careful to signal that he was redefining his terms (as he does below, when explaining that the first four steps in breath meditation correspond to the practice of focusing on the body in and of itself as a frame of reference). The step of breathing in and out sensitive to the entire body relates to the many similes in the suttas depicting jhana as a state of whole-body awareness (see MN 119).
3. "In-&-out breaths are bodily; these are things tied up with the body. That's why in-&-out breaths are bodily fabrications." — MN 44.
4. "Perceptions & feelings are mental; these are things tied up with the mind. That's why perceptions & feelings are mental fabrications." — MN 44.
5. AN 9.34 shows how the mind, step by step, is temporarily released from burdensome mental states of greater and greater refinement as it advances through the stages of jhana.
6. As this shows, a meditator focusing on feelings in themselves as a frame of reference should not abandon the breath as the basis for his/her concentration.


step 3 sabbakayapatisamvedi


interesting comment from b.bodhi, on why he switched from "breath body" to "whole body"


Bhikkhu Bodhi is known for his willingness to constantly modify his positions on, and therefore translations of, early Buddhist discourses--a sign of a responsible and humble translator whose translation is hardly ever final, but rather improves as the person refines and expands his/her knowledge.
In translating the infamously controversial passage regarding the "body"/"breath-body" in the Anapanasati-sutta (whether kaya is literally the whole physical body or the entire duration of a breath), he had first rendered the term "body [of the breath]," only to change it to simply "the body" in later editions (post-2001) of his Majjhima translation.


I've come across a lecture given by Bhikkhu Bodhi which explains his reasoning for the change:


http://www.bodhimonastery.net/courses/MN/MN_course.html


"I used to think that the commentary was completely correct on this, but then it struck me to just focus on the Pâli words sabbakâya, which simply means "whole body," and also the word that comes after that, paṭisaṃvedî. Now the word paṭisaṃvedî has the sense of "experiencing" rather than the sense of awareness or knowing. It's more akin to what you might call the feeling aspect of experience than to the knowing aspect of experience. In fact, the root of this word is related to the word vedanâ which means feeling. And so what seems to me to be taking place here is that while breathing in and breathing out, one's awareness (or range of experience) is now expanding to the point that it can encompass the whole body and take in the whole body while one's attention is still fixed at this particular point at the nostrils where one feels the breath most distinctly coming in and going out.
And I think this can be related to one's experience in the jhanas in that it might be suggesting a stage in the development of mindfulness of breathing, either approaching close to the jhâna or within the jhâna itself. I find some support for this if one takes a look at the Mahâ-Assapura Sutta, which gives a standard way of explaining the four jhanas. The text describes a monk who has abandoned the five hindrances and who "enters upon and abides in the first jhâna, which is accompanied by applied and sustained thought, with rapture and pleasure born of seclusion. He makes the rapture and pleasure born of seclusion drench, steep, fill, and pervade this body, so that there is no part of his whole body..." (it uses the expression sabbakâya), "... unpervaded by the rapture and pleasure born of seclusion." And then the text goes on to use the simile of the barber or barber's apprentice who prepares a ball of bathing powder or shaving powder in a metal basin, sprinkles it with water, and then mixes it so that the water entirely pervades the soap powder inside and out. We get a similar simile in each of the next three paragraphs. Each paragraph includes the expression of the "whole body" being completely pervaded by the qualities within each particular jhanic attainment."


As a side note: Bhikkhu Bodhi's disciple, Analayo, whom I've spoken to over email correspondences and the phone, is apparently going to publish a book on the Anapanasati-sutta (his first book was on the Satipatthana-sutta). From the articles he sent me over the years (they are mostly on comparative studies of the Pali Nikayas and the Chinese Agamas), I also see a clear transition in his thinking and interpretation--which increasingly rely on a simple and direct reading of the suttas themselves rather than resorting to tortuous hermeneutics or exegetical writings composed centuries after the suttas.
(excerpted from a public yahoogroups message board discussion around 2010)


Related Topics

samādhi

tags: anapana, anapanasati, anapanassati, mindfulness of breathing, breath meditation