Yogis on retreats sometimes note pleasant feelings or painful feelings. Early in the retreat, the yogi may have relatively weak controlling faculties indriya [1. confidence saddha 2. wisdom/discernment panna 3. mindfulness sati 4. concentration samaadhi and 5. energy viriya] and not be very well developed or resilient. The yogi may be distracted by the various feelings and feel compelled to move the body or to speak. Some yogis even give up the retreat.
For those yogis who persevere, the controlling faculties will gradually strengthen and stay in balance with each other. The yogi will be able to note feelings without allowing them to weaken the factors for enlightenment bojjha.nga and other wholesome mental conditions [1. mindfulness sati 2. investigation dhammavicaya 3. energy viriya 4. joy/rapture piiti 5. tranquillity passadhi 6. concentration samaadhi and 7. equanimity upekkhaa]. The body also becomes more resilient though not in a tense way. The body becomes suffused with delight and tranquil.
“And how, Aggivessana, is one developed in body and developed in mind?
Here, Aggivessana, pleasant feeling arises in a well-taught noble disciple. Touched by that pleasant feeling, he does not lust after pleasure or continue to lust after pleasure. That pleasant feeling of his ceases. With the cessation of the pleasant feeling, painful feeling arises. Touched by that painful feeling, he does not sorrow, grieve, and lament, he does not weep beating his breast and become distraught. When that pleasant feeling has arisen in him, it does not invade his mind and remain because body is developed. And when that painful feeling has arisen in him, it does not invade his mind and remain because mind is developed.
Anyone in whom, in this double manner, arisen pleasant feeling does not invade his mind and remain because body is developed, and arisen painful feeling does not invade his mind and remain because mind is developed, is thus developed in body and developed in mind.
2. Then Sakka, ruler of gods, went to the Blessed One, and after paying homage to him, he stood at one side and asked: “Venerable sir, how in brief is a bhikkhu liberated in the destruction of craving, one who has reached the ultimate holy life, the ultimate goal, one who is foremost among gods and humans?”
3. “Here, ruler of gods, a bhikkhu has heard that nothing is worth adhering to, he directly knows everything having directly known everything, he fully understands everything; having fully understood everything, whatever feeling he feels, whether pleasant or painful or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, he abides contemplating impermanence in those feelings, contemplating fading away, contemplating cessation, contemplating relinquishment. Contemplating thus, he does not cling to anything in the world. When he does not cling, he is not agitated. When he is not agitated, he personally attains Nibbaana.
He understands: ‘Birth is destroyed, the holy life has been lived, what had to be done has been done, there is no more coming to any state of being.’ Briefly, it is in this way, ruler of gods, that a bhikkhu is liberated in the destruction of craving, one who has reached the ultimate end, the ultimate security from bondage, the ultimate holy life, the ultimate goal, one who is foremost among gods and humans.”