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Why doesn't the Buddha get Deep Vein Thrombosis?


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by rhysaurus:

Sitting in the lotus position for eternity... Surely that can't be good for the health?
This may sound like a flippant question, but in fact it's a serious one. Isn't the long inactivity associated with certain meditation postures likely to increase the chance of potentially fatal blood clots? If not, why not?
(I am a Buddhist myself, but I find meditation to be almost impossibly difficult endeavour).

Answer by ʎəʌəəʍ ʎəʌəəd ʎəʌəəls
because he does his in-flight exercises
but seriously. I think half the point of the Buddhas life was that he renounced the ascetic life and came back to be with people instead of sitting by himself in the forest meditating the whole time. he realized that wasn't the way to go.
It's not necessary to spend hours and hours forcing yourself to meditate.

3 Answers
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Actually, if you read the sutra carefully, there is no information about a person sitting in the lotus position for eternity.
The Buddha and his men are SUPPOSED to be begging for food every morning and eat before noon. Then they have their daily studies. They only meditate when all their studies is done.

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he's a brass neck that one brass knees too and that's gotta help the situation the one in my nannies parlour was brass anyway.You have a point though with the blood clots maybe as the body is so relaxed during meditation blood may flow at a better rate than if tense

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There's no doubt that meditation is nearly impossibly difficult.
But that difficulty comes from the mind's resistance - not from any physical risk.
In 20 years of steady meditation, including many long retreats, I've never heard of anyone suffering any kind of injury from meditation practice. Occasionally, someone will have a knee injury that prevents them from sitting cross-legged, in which case they sit in a chair.
A well-run meditation hall includes walking meditation between sitting meditation periods. Sit for 30 minutes, walk for 10 minutes, and repeat. (Or whatever the length of the sitting period.) This pattern of walking and sitting is more than adequate to prevent clotting.
Further, there's no reason to sit in the full lotus position - a posture that most Westerners cannot sustain. There's nothing magical or special about full lotus. Meditation simply requires that your body be stable and that you can sit without moving for however long the period lasts. Many people sit in half-lotus or "Burmese" position (with the legs bent and feet on the mat). Some people sit in seiza (kneeling, maybe using a bench) or in a chair. I've even seen people with serious injuries meditate while lying down. The posture doesn't matter - what matters is how you keep your mind.
As I said, most of the challenges in meditation come from our thinking mind. The mind resists meditation fiercely. It begins with the urge to itch that is so familiar to new meditators. Then, when we resist that urge, the mind gets sleepy. Or it tells us whacky stories about what we should be doing with our time. Mind does not like to be examined - and meditation is all about examining the mind. It takes great courage to put up with the mind's b*llsh*t.
As a side-note, I think it's important not to mythologize the Buddha and thereby give him god-like powers. He did not sit without moving for days on end. He had to go to the toilet, just like the rest of us. He slept and ate. He got up and stretched. He was a human being, and did what ordinary human beings do.
But the Buddha never lost sight of the point of practice: to awaken from suffering and help others.
Best wishes on your path!