What is the Mahasi method?

Discussion of Satipatthana bhavanā and Vipassana bhavana.

What is the Mahasi method?

Postby Jhana4 » Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:01 pm

I've seen the term "Mahasi method" around. Googling it doesn't give a clear, short description of what it is about.

Would anyone care to post 3-4 lines giving the gist of it?
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Re: What is the Mahasi method?

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:23 pm

Hi Jhana4,

Hmm 4 lines to summarize everything? Simply, the Mahasi method is what Sayadaw Mahasi and his students teach....

You can find a lot of information at:
http://aimwell.org/
e.g. http://aimwell.org/Books/Mahasi/Fundame ... ntals.html

or
http://buddhanet.net/insight.htm
where this is the sort of short summary you're probably looking for:
http://buddhanet.net/imol/wrkshp.htm

:anjali:
Mike
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Re: What is the Mahasi method?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Apr 01, 2011 4:53 am

This from a footnote of some book, I know not which, but it neatly give the Mahasi Sayadaw rationale of teaching:

Cf. Mahasi 1990:PP.17and 21:"the actual method of practice in vipassana meditation is
to ... observe ... the successive occurrences of seeing, hearing, and so on, at the six
sense doors. However, it will not be possible for a beginner to follow these on all successive
incidents as they occur, because his mindfulness, concentration and knowledge
are still very weak. ... A simpler and easier form of the exercise for a beginner is
this: With every breath there occurs in the abdomen a rising-falling movement. Abeginner
should start with the exercise of noting this movement." Mahasi 1992: P.7S:
"we used to instruct the yogi whose powers of concentration have strengthened to
extend this method o fmeditation to noting all that happens at his six sense doors." Ba
Khin 1985=P.94: "in fact one can develop the understanding of anicca through any of
the six organs of sense. In practice, however, we have found that ... the feeling by
contact of touch ... is more tangible than other types of feeling and therefore a beginner
in Vipassana meditation can come to the understanding of anicca more easily
through bodily feelings .... This is the main reason we have chosen the body feelings
as a medium for the quick understanding of anicca. It is open to anyone to try other
means, but my suggestion is that one should have oneself well established in the
understanding of anicca through bodily feelings before an attempt is made through
other types of feeling."
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: What is the Mahasi method?

Postby Jhana4 » Fri Apr 01, 2011 3:03 pm

That is pretty much what I wanted, a thumbnail sketch of what those people actually do when they sit down to practice.

Thanks much.
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
Jhana4
 
Posts: 1309
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 5:20 pm
Location: U.S.A., Northeast


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