THE MIDDLE WAY and BROADBAND SENSINGThis essay is written with a different attitude, it's not proof - merely a personal anecdote.
The Middle Way
Buddha started his life as a Prince and enjoyed all the pleasures of this world. When he was around thirty years old he left his home to search for truth. He followed the Hindu way, renouncing all attachments and abstaining from all sensory pleasure, and he became an ascetic (hermit) for many years.
Thus, he experienced the two extremes of unrestrained sensual pleasure - and sensual withdrawal.
Then he realised there was a third way to find happiness and fulfilment in life, and he called this 'The Middle Way'. It is clearly written and unquestioned by Buddhists that The Middle Way is a way between the two extremes of sensual indulgence (as a prince) and sensory withdrawal (as an ascetic). - That it is unquestioned doesn't necessarily make it true, i too believe this, and it only means i don't have to argue it with any other Buddhists.
The Middle Way and The Third Noble Truth
The following explanation is not intended as rational reasoning or proof, it is purely anecdotal. This is the chain of thougts which led me to the idea that Broadband Sensing is the practical teaching behind The Middle Way.
I felt the Middle Way led to ''release from suffering' and this was also the message in the Third Truth. I felt both were essentially about, or should indicate a way to make life Sukkha. Getting life to run smoothly. And so i wanted to know if or how the Middle Way could be applied to the Third Truth.
The Mahasattipathana's Second and Third Truth discuss the cause and ending of Dukkha. The subject matter in the full text of the Mahāsatipaṭṭhāna is incredibly long winded. It connects the Aggregates (now expanded to a list of Ten Aggregates), to each of the six senses. Sixty steps in our sensory process are described. It describes something which happens not only with the mind, but also with the eye, the ear, the nose, the mouth and the tactile sense.
When applied to the mind, i could only understand the Middle Way as a vague attitude to life, maybe moderation, or non-attachment, and there are many other possible applications, but there was nothing incisive, nothing definate, just a broad area in between the two extremes.
When applied to the body it seemed to indicate taking care of the body, not ignoring it or being finicky and over-sanitised. Again, this left a vague broad area of moderation. (See Broadband Body Awareness for my later deeper understanding).
But then i asked myself, could the two extremes of sensual indulgence and sensory withdrawal be applied to the physical senses? .. what else could i do with my eyes apart from focussing with them or closing them? ... And immediately i thought of how some birds and horses see their entire visual field without focussing on anything special, with their so-called peripheral vision. This was a clear and specific third way. And my experiments and the practical development of this idea continues in Seeing. The results are described in the Introduction.
The Middle Way is a way between sensory indulgence and sensual withdrawal. Broadband Sensing fulfills these criteria perfectly.
And if broadband sensing isn't exactly the answer, then i suggest it must be part of it - simply because it has nothing to do with sensual indulgence or sensual withdrawal.
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