Finding a teacher, when and how often?

Discussion of Satipatthana bhavanā and Vipassana bhavana.

Finding a teacher, when and how often?

Postby innerd00r » Fri Sep 28, 2012 2:15 am

Hi all,

My name is Bill and I'm new to the forum, thanks for being here.

I took a Mindfulness course 8 months ago, and since then have been meditating almost daily. Although the course didn't specifically say so, I believe it followed the basic outline of Vipassana technique (it's based on Jon Kabat-Zinn's MIT MBSR course, which having read his books is basically secular Vipassana).

In any case, although I feel secure in my practice (it is what it is what it is), I'm thinking of finding a group in London to sit with for the community aspect (I'm currently checking out Shambhala, who are very nice). But also, I'm thinking that it might be good to find a teacher, and thus to my question:

What is involved in finding and working with a teacher? Do you meet weekly, monthly, just as needed? I'm a bit confused as to what is involved. Also, how does one find one? I know there are groups in London (London Insight for example) but would I just attend a talk, and then ask for a teacher? Or is it more a case of finding a group lead by a teacher and attending until you feel that it's appropriate to formally ask to be taken on as a student? How does one tell if someone would be a good teacher (other than gut feeling, which will of course play a role)?

Sounds like a ridiculous question, but I'm a bit unclear about it tbh.

Thanks in advance for your responses, :)

Bill
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Re: Finding a teacher, when and how often?

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Sep 28, 2012 11:14 am

Welcome Bill!

There are no hard and fast rules about this. I would visit a few places and see how they operate. Many will have group sessions that you can just turn up to.

There is a directory here that may be helpful:
http://www.buddhanet.info/wbd/
http://www.buddhanet.info/wbd/search.ph ... &tradition[]=theravada

Bhikkhu Pesala, who posts regularly here, is in the London area and would presumably be happy to offer some advice:
http://www.aimwell.org/Classes/classes.html

Best Wishes,
:anjali:
Mike
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Re: Finding a teacher, when and how often?

Postby Ben » Fri Sep 28, 2012 11:55 am

Hi Bill and welcome to Dhamma Wheel!
All the best with your own noble search.
kind regards,

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725


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Re: Finding a teacher, when and how often?

Postby innerd00r » Sat Sep 29, 2012 10:37 pm

Thanks everyone :)

Bill
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Re: Finding a teacher, when and how often?

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Sep 29, 2012 11:31 pm

Hi Bill, if distance is not an issue there are some great places outside of london also who have weekly lessons during the weekend, and you can make it a break from the hustle of london.
The Buddhist society has some classes which have visiting teachers form different places each week/month so there is a good veriety of traditions to see there which may make your choice easier, but then charisma of an individual is not always the best indicator.
good journeying!
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"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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