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Sitting meditation is a practice that calms delusive thoughts and manifests one’s true nature. It is also a practice that, in the body, causes the fiery energy to descend and the watery energy to ascend.

As delusive thoughts are calmed, the watery energy will ascend; as the watery energy ascends, the delusive thoughts will be calmed. Consequently, one’s body and mind will be in perfect harmony, and both the spirit and energy will be refreshed.


However, if delusive thoughts persist in one’s mind, the fiery energy will constantly ascend, burning up the watery energy throughout the entire body thus dampening the brightness of spirit. The body functions like a steam engine; without the energies of fire and water, not even a finger can be lifted.

The six sense organs are all controlled by the brain and hence when one uses the six sense organs to see, hear, or think, the fiery energy rises upwards and the watery energy is depleted, just as oil in a lamp is burned when the lamp is lit.

Therefore, whether we think long and anxiously on something using our mental powers, look carefully at something using our visual powers, or raise our voices to talk energetically about something, our faces will flush and our mouths will become dry.
We should use our six sense organs sparingly even with things that must be done; how much less should we let the wicks of our heads burn continually day and night with useless delusive thoughts!

Therefore, sitting meditation is a practice that aims to remove all of these delusive thoughts, to manifest our original nature, to bring down all of that fiery energy, and to raise the refreshing watery energy.


The Benefits of Sitting Meditation

When one attains the power that comes from long training in sitting meditation, the following ten benefits will result:

  • Rash and thoughtless behavior gradually disappear.
  • The operation of the six sense organs becomes orderly.
  • The suffering of illness decreases, and one’s complexion will brighten.
  • Memory improves.
  • Patience and endurance grow.
  • The attachment to desires diminishes.
  • Unwholesome states of mind change into wholesome states of mind.
  • The wisdom of one’s true nature shines forth.
  • One enjoys Absolute Bliss.
  • One is liberated from the cycle of birth and death.

(from The Principle Book of Won Buddhism, Chapter 4)