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40 meditation subjects

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The 40 meditation subjects are topics for contemplation and meditation, primarily for samatha, tranquility, one-pointed concentration. The subjects are for access to the jhanas, although insight can be attained as well.

List of the 40 meditation subjects

  1. Earth device
  2. Water device
  3. Fire device
  4. Air or wind device
  5. Blue device
  6. Yellow device
  7. Red device
  8. White device
  9. Space device
  10. Consciousness device
  11. A corpse that is bloated
  12. A corpse that is livid (has patchy discoloration)
  13. A corpse that is festering (trickling with pus in broken places)
  14. A corpse that is cut up
  15. A corpse that is gnawed
  16. A corpse that is scattered
  17. A corpse that is hacked and scattered
  18. A corpse that is bleeding
  19. A corpse that is worm-infested
  20. A corpse that is a skeleton
  21. Contemplation of the Buddha
  22. Contemplation of the Dhamma
  23. Contemplation of the Sangha
  24. Contemplation of Virtue
  25. Contemplation of Charity
  26. Contemplation of the Devas
  27. Mindfulness of Death
  28. Mindfulness of the Physical Body
  29. Mindfulness of Breathing
  30. Contemplation of Calmness
  31. Loving-kindness
  32. Compassion
  33. Sympathy
  34. Equanimity
  35. Sphere of Infinity of Space
  36. Sphere of Infinite Consciousness
  37. Sphere of No-thingness
  38. Sphere of Neither Perception nor Non-Perception
  39. Contemplation of the loathsomeness of food
  40. Analysis of the four physical elements

The Visuddhimagga discusses the 40 subjects at length and provides instruction.

See also

References

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