Six powers

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The nine stages of resting the mind are accomplished through the six powers (Skt. ṣaḍbala; Tib. སྟོབས་དྲུག་, tob druk; Wyl. stobs drug):

  1. Listening/study (Skt. śrūtabala; Tib. ཐོས་པ་, töpa; Wyl. thos pa) – ‘resting the mind’ is accomplished through listening to meditation instructions
  2. Reflection (Skt. āśayabala; Tib. བསམ་པ་, sampa; Wyl. bsam pa) – ‘resting the mind longer’ is accomplished through reflection and contemplation
  3. Mindfulness (Skt. smṛtibala; Tib. དྲན་པ་, drenpa; Wyl. dran pa) – through mindfulness one accomplishes ‘continuously resettling’ and ‘fully settling the mind’; whenever one is distracted one gathers the mind and slowly, through habituation, non-distraction occurs
  4. Awareness (Skt. saṃprajanyabala; Tib. ཤེས་བཞིན་, shé shyin; Wyl. shes bzhin) – through awareness one accomplishes ‘taming the mind’, ‘pacifying the mind’ and ‘completely pacifying the mind’; with joy for awareness and seeing the faults of succumbing to thoughts and negative emotions, one no longer falls prey to them
  5. Diligence (Skt. vīryabala; Tib. བརྩོན་འགྲུས་, tsöndrü; Wyl. brtson ‘grus) – through diligence one accomplishes ‘complete pacification’ and ‘one-pointedness’; even subtle thoughts and negative emotions are abandoned
  6. Complete familiarity (Skt. abhyasabala; Tib. ཡོངས་སུ་འདྲིས་པ་, yongsu dripa; Wyl. yongs su ‘dris pa) – the final stage of ‘resting in equanimity’ where the mind is unaffected by the obstacles of dullness or agitation is accomplished through complete familiarity.

Further Reading

  • Sogyal Rinpoche, A Treasury of Dharma (Lodeve: Rigpa, 2005), pages 228-234.