30 day retreat

Discussion of Satipatthana bhavanā and Vipassana bhavana.
jd84
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30 day retreat

Postby jd84 » Mon Oct 18, 2010 9:47 pm

Hi all,

After doing a few 10 day courses (both goenka and mahasi) my teacher suggested I come back for 30 days of mahasi meditation this summer. I wasn't sure at first if I was ready for that (and thought maybe I should do 20 days) but he said if I want to do longer retreats then I should just go for it (not put quite like that!). Now I'm really looking forward to it.

Would anyone like to share their experiences of longer mahasi retreats? and any advice would be appreciated.

thanks a lot,

jon

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby Phra Chuntawongso » Mon Oct 18, 2010 11:19 pm

jd84 wrote:Hi all,

After doing a few 10 day courses (both goenka and mahasi) my teacher suggested I come back for 30 days of mahasi meditation this summer. I wasn't sure at first if I was ready for that (and thought maybe I should do 20 days) but he said if I want to do longer retreats then I should just go for it (not put quite like that!). Now I'm really looking forward to it.

Would anyone like to share their experiences of longer mahasi retreats? and any advice would be appreciated.

thanks a lot,

jon

Hi Jon.Sounds good.Where are you doing your retreat?
I once did 5 months,but it was not all sitting and walking meditation as I often did other odd bits and pieces for the monastery as well.It not only gave me a chance to practice but also allowed me to experience a little more of the every day workings of a temlpe which was quite interesting.
A 30 day retreat will definately(in my opinion)step it up a level.
Good luck and when you finish please come back and tell us how you went.
With metta
And crawling on the planets face,some insects called the human race.
Lost in time
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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby rowyourboat » Tue Oct 19, 2010 7:48 pm

Sounds good, but you should attain your jhanas first. Otherwise you will spend considerable time just developing the required amount of samadhi!

good luck!

with metta
:anjali:
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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby Ben » Tue Oct 19, 2010 7:55 pm

Hi Jon.
I am doing my own 30-day retreat later this year. I've done a few long courses but this is my first 30-day.
Be diligent in your practice and be careful not to develop craving for any particular meditative attainment.
Wishing you the very best with your endeavours.

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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jd84
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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby jd84 » Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:04 pm

thanks for your replies and yes I'll be sure to report back when I'm done! I'm doing the retreat at Satipanya centre in Wales with Bhante Bodhidhamma.

rowyourboat wrote:Sounds good, but you should attain your jhanas first. Otherwise you will spend considerable time just developing the required amount of samadhi!

good luck!

with metta
:anjali:
RYB


Hi rowyourboat, could you elaborate a little? I thought some mahasi centres suggest 30 day retreats for complete beginners, so these people will not have attained first jhana? Do you think that you should have a high level of samadhi before you sit longer retreats? :thinking:

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Tue Oct 19, 2010 9:25 pm

You don't need any level of jhāna before undertaking a Mahāsi style retreat. The practice develops awareness of ever-changing mental phenomena, not absorption onto a single kind of phenomenon. Concentration and insight will develop as mindfulness develops.

See Sayādaw U Pandita's discourse on Vipassana Jhānas
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jd84
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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby jd84 » Wed Oct 20, 2010 6:45 am

ok, thanks for clearing that up :smile:

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby jd84 » Wed Oct 20, 2010 6:51 am

ben,

wow 30 days self retreat goenka style? respect to you, I'm sure it'll be great. I'll keep my eyes peeled on here for your experience when you finish, If you feel like telling us about it

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby elcfa » Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:04 am

I have done many one-month meditation retreats in Thailand as part of my ongoing, annual "ritual".
I would not hesitate one moment to highly recommend it for everyone.
You progress much quicker than you would doing meditation at home.

Important:
Try to settle all unfinished business before going. It is NOT good to worry about worldly issues while in intensive retreats.
Every time you check your email for example, it would take you 3-4 hours of meditation to come back to the equanimity state you had before checking the email.

The only downside I have is that you would be in such equanimity state that you would:
- think that it is easy to do it in 'outside world'.
- or you would not look forward to meeting the outside world again

Good luck.

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby Sanghamitta » Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:27 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:You don't need any level of jhāna before undertaking a Mahāsi style retreat. The practice develops awareness of ever-changing mental phenomena, not absorption onto a single kind of phenomenon. Concentration and insight will develop as mindfulness develops.

See Sayādaw U Pandita's discourse on Vipassana Jhānas

What Bhante and Ben said.. :goodpost: in the plural.

30 days is good amount of time...do-able and sufficient. Let is know how it goes ?

:anjali:
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby rowyourboat » Wed Oct 20, 2010 5:14 pm

Practicing Vipassana Meditation with Jhana
MONDAY, 16 MARCH 2009 18:17

Vipassana Meditation - THE METHOD IN BRIEF (BY MAHASI SAYADAW)

With Jhana

Those who desire to practise Vipassana should first of all be well equipped with a knowledge, either in brief or in extension, of the fact that living beings are made up of only two constituents of body (rupa) and mind (nama), that the body and mind are formed because of relative cause and effect and that as they are undergoing perpetual change, they are impermanent subject to suffering and devoid of any permanent ego substance i.e. "atta." See Non-Self.

A person who is thus fully equipped with the knowledge as mentioned above should, first and foremost, induce the jhanic state he has already attained and concentrate on it. He should then proceed by contemplating continuously the sensations, such as 'seeing, hearing, touching, knowing (mind consciousness), etc.,' occurring at the six sense-doors. If tiredness or exhaustion is felt by continuous effort in the contemplation of these varied objects, the jhana to which he has become an adept may again be induced by making a firm resolve to remain in that jhanic state for 15 or 30 minutes.

On expiry of the jhanic state, he should begin with the contemplation of that jhana and proceed by contemplating continuously on the phenomena that occur at the six sense-doors, as before. This procedure of alternately inducing jhanic state and then proceeding with the contemplation of sensations at the six sense-doors should be carried out repeatedly. When vipassana samadhi is sufficiently strong he will be able to carry on the contemplation continuo usly day and night without any physical or mental strain.

At this stage, it will be distinctly perceived, as a matter of course, that at every moment of contemplation body and mind (rupa and nama) are blended together and arising in pairs. It will be also clearly perceived that this is but a process of cause and effect. At every moment of contemplation as both the object of sensation and mind-consciousness vanish, it will also be appreciated that all are impermanent, and that they are ills without any pleasantness and dependability; and also that they are merely a natural process of arising and passing away of things which do not consist of enduring entity or soul. When the full knowledge of this phenomenal existence-'impermanence, suffering, and non-self' is accomplished, there will arise the insight-knowledge of "Path and Fruit," which will carry him on to the actual realization of Nibbana . This is, in short, the practice by way of 'samatha-yanika' for the purpose of realizing Nibbana.
:namaste:
With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha

jd84
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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby jd84 » Thu Oct 21, 2010 7:37 am

hmmm unfortunately no time for attaining jhanas before this retreat! i've got exams to pass! :juggling: (i just really wanted to use that smiley)

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby fabianfred » Sat Oct 23, 2010 9:21 am

I did the 26 day one at Wat Rampoeng, Chiangmai which teaches the same as the Mahasi style.
If you have concentration ailities first, jhanas or access concentration...all the better....but not essential.
The main thing is avoiding all distractions, especially talking...and keep 'noteing' everything ...all the time....every second.....keep the momentum going.
Like it takes a certain amount of prolonged energy to lift a satellite into orbit. If you try it a million times without enough, then it'll fall back and not escape. if you do a thousand retreats but do not keep the noteing constant then you will not achieve breakthrough.
Just try your best....and hardest.
Eat little, sleep little, talk little...practice alot :tongue:

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby rowyourboat » Sat Oct 23, 2010 4:29 pm

:goodpost:

:anjali:

with metta
With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha

jd84
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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby jd84 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 12:41 pm

thanks very much for all replies... much appreciated!

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby chargingbull » Thu May 30, 2013 2:23 pm

Why sleep little? I still dont understand this aspect of meditative practice...! Surely a refreshed mind is able to prolong effort. All of my 'best' meditations have been whilst refreshed and alert...?

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Re: 30 day retreat

Postby Bakmoon » Fri May 31, 2013 7:10 am

chargingbull wrote:Why sleep little? I still dont understand this aspect of meditative practice...! Surely a refreshed mind is able to prolong effort. All of my 'best' meditations have been whilst refreshed and alert...?


I think that they are specifically talking about not sleeping a lot during retreat. In the context of retreat, you will actually find that you need much less sleep than you normally do.
The non-doing of any evil,
The performance of what's skillful,
The cleansing of one's own mind:
This is the Buddhas' teaching.


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