zerostao

vipassana

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been curious about vipassana after hearing Gerard speak about it.

is it in the theravada and mayahana traditions? is it also in dzogchen?

is it either an intellectual or intuitive experience?

is this a meditation that can be done independant of buddhist beliefs?

i am confident i did not ask all the appropiate questions, so feel free to answer also the ones i did not address.

 

humble thanks,

z

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It's not an intellectual practice, you are meditating to experience reality, this is intuitive.

You can simply be aware of any sensations that arise as you meditate without becoming attached, remaining equanimous. Realise that our perceived reality is all sensate. So a good base to be able to do this is the concentration practice, which calms and hones your mind to practice insight.

There's no dogma attached, it's straightforward and effective.

 

I sometimes get the feel people think the Buddhist practice is all dry and lifeless. It's just because they've not put some time and effort into the meditation practice and think the whole thing is just intellectual.

Edited by Ish
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My understanding is the Vipassana part is actually body sensation meditaion. In the Goenka type retreats you do Samatha meditation on the breath or something similar for a few days so it focuses your concentration, then you do Vipassana body scan sensation meditation, which is when many people seem to gain transformations. I have heard good things about this approach.

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been curious about vipassana after hearing Gerard speak about it.

is it in the theravada and mayahana traditions? is it also in dzogchen?

is it either an intellectual or intuitive experience?

is this a meditation that can be done independant of buddhist beliefs?

i am confident i did not ask all the appropiate questions, so feel free to answer also the ones i did not address.

 

humble thanks,

z

Vipassana is at the heart of all Buddhist traditions, but there's absolutely no need to adopt Buddhism in order to practice and apply its benefits. Its a simple and safe technique to develop, one you can master even without attending any paid tuition - most Buddhist centers offer regular weekly sessions to guide new students on Vipassana and other related practices, free of charge, but donations are always appreciated, though not compulsory. Remember, if anyone at any of these places give you strange looks because you do not wish to be a Buddhist, tell them to keep it, and look for another more welcoming, more embracing center with a jollier atmosphere and peeples. :) Some so-called Buddhist sanghas can be very puritanical, which is rather yuck, but there are others which can be pretty chilled out. Just keep looking.... genuine teachers never discriminate.

Edited by C T
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I'll just put in my 2 cents about practicing vipassana, which is that it is one of the most accessible "post-meditation" practices in that it allows for meditation any where any time. I find one place I tend to practice it a lot is on public transportation. There's often a feeling to escape into a book or ipod or read advertisements, but turning off those thoughts and being aware is like opening a door to another realm of the subway ride or bus ride. When I realize I'm feeling escapist tendencies, I'll look at a single point and let my senses grasp what they grasp, turn off my thoughts and just be aware of everything that comes to my attention without grasping for it.

 

Another "post-meditation" vipassana is being aware of the early ripples of the "5 hindrances" (sensual desire, ill will, sloth & drowsiness, restlessness, and doubt) which tend to quickly dissolve under the light of our attention. When people talk about vipassana, I find this type of emotional vipassana is often given less attention while it is at least as important as the other types (you could say they are all one, or complementary at the very least).

 

Here's an article about the "5 hindrances."

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is it in the theravada and mayahana traditions? is it also in dzogchen?

There is quite a bit more material available from the Theravada tradition on vipassana than Mahayana and Vajrayana. I looked into this a bit and apparently, some Mahayana (e.g. Tiantai) and Vajrayana (Sutra Mahamudra and Dzogchen Semde) paths also emphaize the shamatha-vipashyana (=Sanskrit word for vipassana) model of meditative practice.

 

My understanding is the Vipassana part is actually body sensation meditaion.

Well, this is one approach to vipassana. Apparently there are quite a few. It seems to me like the idea of vipassana is to deconstruct your experience. Body scanning deconstructs your experience at the level of body. Whereas Mahamudra and Dzogchen vipashyana try to deconstruct the mind straight off.

 

That's the impression that I get.

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the goenka type is what have available closest to me.

 

Unfortunately, Goenka strips off the real gem of the Vipassana method: walking meditation. Without this component, it's nothing more than a denatured "product."

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Unfortunately, Goenka strips off the real gem of the Vipassana method: walking meditation. Without this component, it's nothing more than a denatured "product."

 

thanks Gerard. i will look further for other vipassana

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been curious about vipassana after hearing Gerard speak about it.

is it in the theravada and mayahana traditions? is it also in dzogchen?

is it either an intellectual or intuitive experience?

is this a meditation that can be done independant of buddhist beliefs?

i am confident i did not ask all the appropiate questions, so feel free to answer also the ones i did not address.

 

humble thanks,

z

is this a meditation that can be done independant of buddhist beliefs?

 

No to disparage your post in any way........

 

There are other great traditions with their own meditative techniques that you could use in order to advance spiritually. Why even bother doing vipasyana in the first place, if not to deconstruct your experience in order prove for yourself the teachings of anatta, dependent origination, impermanence and whatnot?

 

I mean all of Buddhism is built around samatha-vipasyana and developing prajna, which is what separates it from other traditions of the world. The whole point of vipasyana, being to deconstruct and investigate our sensate experience in order to come to an experiential understanding of no-self and D.O.

 

Vipasyana is not needed, if you aren't going to investigate into the emptiness nature of experience (or what Buddhism teaches in general.)

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glad to hear from you Simple_Jack,

 

my idea is i do not want to enter into anything with a pre-conceived notion of what to expect.

imo to enter with a completely open mind and without expectation or holding to any belief is the way

i will gain the better experience .

i thought vipassana was to find reality?

i dont want to prejudge what reality may or may not be.

 

i am curious about the process. if you think it holds no value unless i am seeking to become a Buddhist?

what is with the labels anyway?

i am seeking to find reality.

if it leads to Buddha thats cool , if it don't that's cool too.

i am under the impression that taoists and buddhists share many of the same concepts but give them different names?

this is the type of thing i am trying to explore.

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i didnt dismiss anything. this is all new to me and i expect to be baby stepping awhile.

i did say i would look further.

i also thought i could use my bgz circle walking as a walking meditation, as i already do.

or my immortal walking, or taoist jogging.

 

i greatly appreciate everyone's who has ideas to share , experiences to share.

one thing i have in common with Gerard is the baguazhang thing.

i had thought it was basically all i ever needed. Gerard suggested i try some vipassana retreat.

i thought sure, why not.

 

i have had some intuitive experiences made big impact on me already.

i am interested to see how those compare with the vipassana.

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yep get in the ten day retreat and then consider its effects. total open mind going in.

edit> it will be May at the soonest i have ten consecutive days available.

 

 

 

Edited by zerostao

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Unfortunately, Goenka strips off the real gem of the Vipassana method: walking meditation. Without this component, it's nothing more than a denatured "product."

 

It is true that it is not formally introduced at the Goenka retreat. He says however that you should apply the method 24/7 also when walking.

 

He even mentions that if you can't sleep because of the energy then it "wonderful!" because of the opportunity for practising.

 

I think the retreat I went to was worth the effort.

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I read a book written recently by an academic who had little belief in spirituality and Buddhism but had a long term health problem which many different doctors and alternative health specialists couldn't help with, so as a last resort he went on a Goenka retreat. He found it very difficult not being used to meditation at all and many people left after a couple of days but he stuck with it and when he moved onto the body sensation meditation phase he experienced a huge range of changing sensations and emotional releases and after he finished his ten days he found his health problem was completely gone. The writer said that he had tried to keep up the meditation but didn't get any further breakthroughs outside of the retreat environment but his health remained improved.

 

I was thinking of trying a Goenka type retreat myself after reading this.

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I read a book written recently by an academic who had little belief in spirituality and Buddhism but had a long term health problem which many different doctors and alternative health specialists couldn't help with, so as a last resort he went on a Goenka retreat. He found it very difficult not being used to meditation at all and many people left after a couple of days but he stuck with it and when he moved onto the body sensation meditation phase he experienced a huge range of changing sensations and emotional releases and after he finished his ten days he found his health problem was completely gone. The writer said that he had tried to keep up the meditation but didn't get any further breakthroughs outside of the retreat environment but his health remained improved.

 

I was thinking of trying a Goenka type retreat myself after reading this.

 

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Yeah that that's the guy thanks :) I can't say it is the best book I have ever read as much of it is him talking about his prostate problems, but it's a good example of the healing potential of vipassana meditation

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I don't know what ended up happening to this woman's book, but she claims to have been healed by vipassana in prison. Of course, she had the "luck" to be able to practice 20 hours a day.

 

http://www.radcliffe...2010mthida.aspx

 

i reckon doing time is a tremendous challenge. to turn it into a positive is remarkable.

either makes or breaks someone.

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