These three aspects of meditation are interlinked. I’ve said single-pointed-focus and mindfulness are opposite sides of the same coin. I’d like to add; absorption may be seen as the edge of that same coin….
So how do these three facets differ from each other and how do they function to build our meditation?
One analogy I find useful is to say single pointed focus is like our sight when focusing on something specific – such as focusing on this page of writing. While mindfulness is like the peripheral vision, so if you wanted to you could un-focus slightly and (while still looking at this page) observe the room with the side of your eyes. Absorption is akin to the way the scenery in the background seems to reduce (and disappear) when we re-focus on these written words.
Although this analogy is very limited, it does give us an inkling of how these three facets work together when we meditate.
- Single pointed focus is to focus our attention exclusively upon one object, steadily observing without distraction.
- Absorption is the result of focused attention and creates a bubble of spaciousness and stillness in which you can focus more deeply.
- Mindfulness is a broader focus of attention, keeping the mind in the present moment and being aware of what is happening.
There is more on single pointed focus (click here)
There is more on absorption (click here)
There is more on mindfulness (click here)
I’ll also be writing more on these topics in the near future, especially mindfulness.