When praying to the Buddha, the practitioner should wear loose, thin clothes. After finishing the dharma subject of praying to the Buddhas, the practitioner bows once, as described previously. For the semi-cross-legged sitting, the practitioner can change into shorts, but the waist should be loose because if it is tight while one is sitting, it will prevent free circulation of dharmas, which could later cause back pain or intestinal pain. The dharma subject of meditative sitting must be comfortable and at ease. For sitting meditation in Tibet, the practitioner is allowed to wear only a loincloth, just as in Japan, causing neither binding nor entanglement. After completing the arrangement, the practitioner sits for meditation with a purely calm mind in silence for five minutes.
The practitioner begins sitting meditation by number counting observation, which means counting numbers in his or her mind. The sound is soft enough for the ears to just pick up; one should not count loudly. The first night, one can count from 1 to 200 or 320. Once the counting is finished, there is definitely no thought. Sitting definitely without thoughts is the practice of meditation. Each sitting session lasts from twenty to forty minutes, the longer the better, but it depends on the root capability, effort, and confidence of the practitioner.
On the second night, the practitioner prays to the Buddha again, and then performs number counting observation from 1 to 320 or 490. This must be done slowly; one should not count fast. The purpose is for one’s mind to reach a state of stillness in order to enter meditation. When the counting is done, there should definitely be no thought, as noted above.
Each night, one should perform the meditation for twenty to forty-five or sixty minutes. But one should perform the number counting observation for the first seven nights only. After that, one still prays to the Buddhas but does not need the counting anymore. The process goes like that; one should make an effort for meditative sitting.