Attention to Attention

Attention pays attention to a lot of things, but when attention pays attention to attention, then there is a stillness, and that stillness introduces you to your Self.


This entry was posted in Sitara and tagged by Sitara. Bookmark the permalink.

About Sitara

Sitara was born in 1954, she became a disciple of Osho in 1979. In 2002, she met Dolano and from then on,discovered Western-style Advaita teachings, especially those of Gangaji. After reading Back to the Truth by Dennis Waite in 2007, Sitara started to study traditional Advaita Vedanta (main influences being Swami Paramarthananda, Swami Dayananda and Swami Chinmayananda). She teaches several students on a one-to-one basis or in small groups (Western-style teaching inspired by Advaita Vedanta). Sitara is highly appreciative of Advaita Vedanta while at the same time approving of several Western Advaita teachers. She loves Indian culture and spent many years in India.

6 thoughts on “Attention to Attention

  1. Sounds clever but I’m not sure I like this loose use of words to make the satsangee feel good. Does it not ultimately confuse rather than enlighten?

    What is this subject ‘attention’ that supposedly ‘pays attention’? And, as if that is not bad enough, it then ‘pays attention’ to itself?! What is he really saying if we translate this into traditional terminology? Surely attention is an activity performed by the mind. As such, it can be neither subject nor object. You, the subject, ‘direct’ attention (or not).

    (Just a few thoughts trigerred by this provocative quote!)


    • Hi Dennis, I am quite sure that it does work if a prepared seeker tries it and a teacher was there to point out what actually happens. Anyone trying to do this – attention paying attention to attention – will fail, meaning he will unfailingly end up in a state of no-mind, what Mooji calls stillness. This stillness or state of no-mind is a moment of crystallized chitta shuddhi, and it is true that the Self shines through it and can be pointed to. Again: it would work only for a prepared seeker, in the right moment and surely not for everyone; plus it would work only if someone who is Self-realized points to the Self as Self (“This is who you are”), It’s similar to the story of the 10th Man.

      • Yes, of course I know what you are saying. But you are a j~nAnI, using your understanding of Advaita to interpret what is being said in a way that make sense. Many (most?) people who attend this sort of occasional meeting do not have this understanding and can only use their knowledge of English grammar, language and intuition. You have to ask yourself whether, at that level, it is actually likely to be helpful. I guess, for those who are unable to commit to long-term learning, it may be the best they are going to get…

  2. You say: “I guess, for those who are unable to commit to long-term learning, it may be the best they are going to get…”

    Two aspects:
    1. Even if the majority of satsang attendees will not be able to fully understand the implications of such a statement, isn’t it more than enough if, once in a while, one or two of them will? How many of the long term learners in a traditional class are likely to fully understand the implications of what they learn?
    2. The reason that most Westerner are “unable to commit to long-term learning” is because most Vedanta teachers are unable to convey its immense value to Westerners (see my posts on Seeking and Seekers).

    • 1. There is certainly some truth in that. It’s just that I always bridle when I come across something that could be expressed more clearly so that there is no room for misunderstanding. But then I guess the cleverly expressed aphorism can sometimes have more effect than a long explanation so maybe I take back my first thought! (After all, traditional teaching has such things as ‘you are That’!)
      2. I think there are two problems for Westerners. One is that there are so few traditional teachers in the West. The other is that many Westerners seem to have the attitude that they want (and expect to get) immediate results!

  3. Yes, especially for people who do not speak English there is hardly anyone. I agree that Westerners are very impatient. Yet I think that the first point is more weighty because the Western mentality will first of all look for a teacher who “feels right”. The teacher is central, not the teaching – although you cannot really separate the two.

Comments are closed.