Modalities of Mind

This talk describes five modalities of mind that we can learn to distinguish when we commit to a path of meditation and mindfulness:

(1) discursive thinking
(2) applied thinking
(3) attentional consciousness
(4) felt sense
(5) awareness

We encounter the modality of discursive thinking when we first sit down in meditation. We begin to see that it obscures, blocks, obstructs the other modalities. By learning to be less invested in discursiveness, over time, we can become more and more familiar with each of the other modalities and see their value, interrelatedness, and limitations. This increasing granularity allows us to employ our minds more and more skillfully on our path of transformation, liberation, wisdom, and compassion.

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Zenki Christian Dillo Roshi is the the guiding teacher at the Boulder Zen Center in Colorado, USA. This podcast shares the regular dharma talks given at the center. Zenki Roshi approaches Zen practice as a craft of transformation, liberation, wisdom and compassionate action. His interest is to bring Buddhism alive within the Western cultural context, while staying committed to the traditional emphasis on yogic embodiment.