3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

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3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby konchokzopa » Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:01 pm

Hi, its been two and half weeks since i sent the application letter to Pa Auk Forest Monastery for 3 month meditation retreat.

I know that it takes time but if for some reason i cant go there i wanna look for alternatives where you can do samatha practice in retreat conditions for 3 months. i would like intensive meditation retreat so that the time is used to fullest and nothing goes to waste.

can you list here monasteries or meditation centers all over the world wherever where you can do 3 month long shamatha meditation retreat, as much meditation in a day as possible.

thanks. :anjali:
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Re: 3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:15 pm

Samatha centres are rather less common than vipassanā centres.

There are many places to go to practice vipassanā for 3 months or more, but you will still have to wait for a visa to get to Burma — Thailand is easier.

My knowledge is too out of date now to recommend the best centres to apply to.
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Re: 3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby reflection » Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:50 pm

You can probably do it in many monasteries, but a lot like it if they already know you. For them of course it is also a sort of 'risk' to take a person they totally don't know in for three months. But, there will be jobs in most if not all monasteries but I don't think they will be detrimental to the practice - I'd say it's quite the opposite even. For one thing, jobs can also be done in meditation.

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Re: 3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby bluppy » Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:19 am

konchokzopa wrote:Hi, its been two and half weeks since i sent the application letter to Pa Auk Forest Monastery for 3 month meditation retreat.


You might consider making an international call to Myanmar, to get faster answer. I tried before to communicate via email to Myanmar (for a pilgrimage tour, not to Pa Auk Monastery) and didn't get any answer for weeks, until I called them and got the answer right away.
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Re: 3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby konchokzopa » Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:17 pm

ive tried to call the monastery many times but nobody never answers the phone there.
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Re: 3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby konchokzopa » Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:19 pm

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Samatha centres are rather less common than vipassanā centres.


do they teach samatha in the vipassana centers, since according to what i have learned from my Teachers and teachings, that vipassana without at least some grounding and foundation in samatha practice is futile and wont penetrate the mind.

so what is the point in jumping straight to vipassana. do they in vipassana retreat center's teach you satipattana to get a solid foundation in concentration so you can actually work with vipassana.
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Re: 3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Nov 14, 2013 5:00 pm

konchokzopa wrote:What i have learned from my Teachers and teachings, that vipassana without at least some grounding and foundation in samatha practice is futile and wont penetrate the mind.

Here is what the Venerable Ledi Sayādaw says in his Manual of Respiration
When can one proceed to Vipassanā? In the Ānāpānassati Sutta and the Commentary, the order of practice is to undertake the work of the fourth tetrad only after the attainment of the four jhānas. If one can adhere strictly to this order it is ideal. However, if one finds oneself unable to follow this order of practice one may proceed to insight from the third jhāna. It is permissible to proceed to insight also from the second jhāna, or from the first jhāna, or from access concentration before jhāna is attained, or from the connection stage, or even from the counting stage after the wandering tendencies of the mind have been overcome.

If time is limited (and three months is not all that long), one should proceed directly to insight as soon as the wandering tendencies of the mind have been overcome. If the five hindrances have been dispelled, then purity of mind (citta visuddhi) has been gained, and one may contemplate the five aggregates to develop insight into the three characteristics. As long as effort is continuous, constant, and vigorous, one can maintain mental purity while contemplating whatever mental and physical phenomena arise in the present moment.

If mindfulness slips,then the hindrances may again overwhelm the mind, but the five hindrances are also valid objects for contemplation since they are included in the fourth section of the Satipaṭṭhāna Sutta (Dhammānupassanā Satipaṭṭhāna). For example, if one becomes doubtful (regarding the method, or regarding one's own ability, etc.), one can contemplate the doubtful mind until it disappears. Then mindfulness is re-established, and purity of mind is regained.
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Re: 3 month meditation retreat ( samatha ) where ?

Postby konchokzopa » Thu Nov 14, 2013 5:58 pm

hmm. ill make a new thread asking for places for vipassana retreat.
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