This chapter explores the nature of sati/mindfulness and analyzes its different aspects: an equanimous “bare attention” supported by wise and probing attention, protective awareness, clear recollection that calls up helpful qualities, and contemplative recollections. The roles of mindfulness in calm (samatha) and insight (vipassanā) meditations are explored, emphasizing that it is equally important in both of these, though used in different ways. Both are ways of practicing the satipaṭṭhānas, or “applications of mindfulness,” though in samatha, mindfulness works with strong concentration (samādhi) to develop lucid trances (jhāna) that in turn can be a good basis for vipassanā. The nature of “secular” mindfulness is analyzed and compared to the fuller forms of it in the kinds of Buddhism explored in this chapter. The chapter ends with a discussion of how mindfulness is seen in Theravāda and Sarvāstivāda Abhidhamma, as this raises issues of its natural complements, and whether or not it is a quality unique to certain states of mind.
7.1 Introduction 115 7.2 Mindfulness and Attention 116 7.3 Mindfulness as Protective Awareness 117 7.4 Mindfulness as Clear Memory and Introspective Awareness 117 7.5 Mindfulness as Calling to Mind Certain Concepts 118 7.6 Mindfulness as a Kindly and Light Type of Awareness 119 7.7 Everyday Mindfulness 119 7.8 The Four Satipatthānas 119 7.9 Samatha and Vipassanā 120 7.10 Samatha Meditation 122 7.11 Mindfulness in Samatha Meditation 124 7.12 Mindfulness and Concentration/Mental Unification (samādhi) 126 7.13 Mindfulness in Vipassanā Meditation 128 7.14 Secular Mindfulness and Buddhist Mindfulness 131 7.15 Mindfulness in the Theravādin and Sarvāstivādin Abhidhammas, and Whether It Is a Universal Feature of the Mind 133 7.16 Conclusion 135 Abbreviations 136 References 136