By Jack Kornfield, Paul Breiter
Buddhist grasp Achaan Chah spent years meditating in a wooded area monastery of Thailand. This striking publication displays his easy and strong message in addition to the quiet, pleased Buddhist perform of dhudanga, or "everyday mindfulness," with profound insights for the West.
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Additional info for A Still Forest Pool: The Insight Meditation of Achaan Chah
The Self/other, ego/allo distinction is fundamental. Please refer to figures 1 through 5 whenever you need to refresh your understanding of this pivotal difference between Self-centered and other-centered attentive processing. Any time we perceive the world egocentrically, we are embracing the sovereignty of our own subjective Self to some degree. In sharp contrast, the allo-centric perspective tends to remain subordinate, hidden out of sight at subconscious levels. During meditative training—without your being aware of it—two developments can emerge and deepen simultaneously: (1) the letting go, and restructuring, of some prior habitual Self-centered attentive processing, and (2) the gradual easing toward (and rarely, a shift into) those covert, bottomup modes of attending that emerge naturally as you revise your habits of allocentric attentive processing.
It turns out that the long-term practice of training attention becomes an integral part of dissolving our overconditioned Self. That’s the main reason why this book frames the training of attentiveness in the context of our becoming less Selfcentered. Only during this decade has neuroimaging research shown that attention and Self — seemingly joined at the hip like twins — still represent functions that can pull in opposite directions. In fact, when we normally shift attention toward the external world, what effect does this shift have on our ever-dominant Self-centeredness?
Each is represented much lower down, yet again over the outside of the brain. One is the temporo-parietal junction (TPJ). The other is the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). A key point: The functions of this ventral attention system are represented asymmetrically. Indeed, figure 2 shows the right side of the brain because this right side dominates the ventral system. How is this possible? The circuits on this right side cross over the midline to co-opt those other ventral attentive mechanisms that we represent over on the left lower side of our brain.
A Still Forest Pool: The Insight Meditation of Achaan Chah by Jack Kornfield, Paul Breiter