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Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 4:51 am
by alan
Will any of this matter without a strong base of concentration?

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 4:53 am
by Ben
Understanding this so deeply and completely that one lives continuously with such Mindfulness and Insight is a whole nuther matter....
Well said!

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 5:03 am
by alan
I have no insights to reveal after Vipassana, and I would not recommend it to a friend. I found it to be a waste of time.

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 5:12 am
by cooran
alan wrote:I gave up Vipassana because I found it to be a waste of time. Forget about "insight knowledge". Just concentrate, and then take it from there.
Hello Alan,

You may like to read this article by Thanissaro Bhikkhu:
One Tool Among Many - The Place of Vipassana in Buddhist Practice
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... etool.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

metta
Chris

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 5:38 am
by christopher:::
alan wrote:Will any of this matter without a strong base of concentration?
My own experience is it's impossible to be mindful without also having strength of concentration, simultaneously. Last night i didn't get enough sleep, had to teach this morning, have papers that need grading... Have not been able to muster much mindfulness or concentration beyond what is needed to complete such tasks.
Ben wrote:
Understanding this so deeply and completely that one lives continuously with such Mindfulness and Insight is a whole nuther matter....
Well said!
:smile:
Chris wrote: One Tool Among Many - The Place of Vipassana in Buddhist Practice
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... etool.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Thanks for that, Chris.

:anjali:

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 5:52 am
by alan
Thanks Chris! That was an excellent article. It is bedtime here in the U.S., but I look forward to conversing with you later--goodnight!

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 8:03 am
by Sanghamitta
I have found Vipassana far from a waste of time. I learned first the Burmese method and then the more informal method taught by Ajahn Chahs community at Chithurst. It has been the basis of my Dhamma practice.

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 8:21 am
by Sanghamitta
Having just read the article linked to by Chris I would add that Vipassana forms the basis of my practice alongside Samatha, I too was taught to see them as complimentary and mutually supportive. I realise that I see Samatha as the default that needs no further comment. Vipassana still feels to me like something innovative, but thats just me I suspect .Thats the order in which I learned them.

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:26 pm
by christopher:::
Definitely, Sanghamitta, they go hand in hand... It seems like all the factors of skillful dhamma practice are inter-related and mutually reinforcing....

:anjali:

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Thu Dec 31, 2009 3:00 am
by catmoon
Hiya Smokey! You still around?

I stumbled into an insight the other day. For a brief moment I saw the extent of my mental obscurations. I was like floating into the air on a foggy day, looking down at the ground, and seeing where the clear spots were. I could see that attachment to this idea or that was obscuring the truth about things. Sadly, not the kind of insight that will do anyone else much good.

Funny thing is, just knowing there is a barrier and it's nature, does not permit seeing through the barrier. You still have to take the barrier apart.

Oh, one thing that might be useful fell out of this. When one is unaware of obscurations, it appears that vision is completely unobstructed in all directions. So the fog analogy isn't a very good one.

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 1:39 pm
by smokey
catmoon wrote:Hiya Smokey! You still around?

I stumbled into an insight the other day. For a brief moment I saw the extent of my mental obscurations. I was like floating into the air on a foggy day, looking down at the ground, and seeing where the clear spots were. I could see that attachment to this idea or that was obscuring the truth about things. Sadly, not the kind of insight that will do anyone else much good.

Funny thing is, just knowing there is a barrier and it's nature, does not permit seeing through the barrier. You still have to take the barrier apart.

Oh, one thing that might be useful fell out of this. When one is unaware of obscurations, it appears that vision is completely unobstructed in all directions. So the fog analogy isn't a very good one.
Thank you, Catmoon :D

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 4:58 pm
by rowyourboat
There are 4 steps to stream entry:
1) association with spiritual friends (read: a dhamma teacher who can teach you the path -inclusive of insight)
2) listening to the true dhamma (of an (semi)elightened being- discussing the components of reality. four noble truths)
3) appropriate contemplation (yonisomanasikara)
4) practice according to the dhamma

Some people find that their understanding is adequate to jump into numbe 4 without doing number 3. However if number 3 is not done some minght find that their vipassana is fruitless, in my experience. It only makes sense if you can start seeing phenomena in a 'differnt way' (to put it crudely) ie- with some degree of understanding of the dhamma. This is the way to start undermining mundane reality and start the process of true letting go. Seeing everything the same old way will not get us far.

The Buddha once said that it takes Right View and morality before one starts on the four foundations of mindfulness. Two factors which lead to right view are listening to others (paratoghoso) and appropriate contemplation (yonismanasikaro) This leads to insight born of meditation to arise. Otherwise it is just mindfulness and may lead to concentration states (useful, but limiting). What is requires is mindfulness with clear comprehension (sampajanna). Clear comprehension is helped by some degree of prior theoretical understanding (to know what aspect to be mindful of- namely arising and passing away, and of what components/aggregates).

Some may gain insight without step 3 if their faculty of wisdom is strong.

with metta

RYB

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:00 pm
by meindzai
I wouldn't have stated it quite as the poster above, but I have found that most "Vipassana meditation" techniques did not do much for me either. I suspect it's that I just have such a lack of concentration to begin with, the vipassana is just too wobbly for me. Like the Buddha said: "Different strokes for Different folks!" Just kidding :tongue: Though I'm sure we can find something along those lines in the canon.

Anyway, there's plenty to be done just by working with concentration, and it is not devoid of insight.

-M

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 3:17 pm
by christopher:::
In line with your "Different Strokes" observation, I sometimes feel that the various methods, approaches, schools and traditions are a bit like music... There is no one "best" way, and people are drawn to what works for them, and "feels right"....

ideally, what feels like home...

:anjali:

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 3:31 pm
by PeterB
I was a student of a very well known Vajrayana teacher who used to say " tell me when you feel comfortable in your practice, so I can change it straightaway." He meant it too.

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 12:32 am
by christopher:::
Wasn't talking about feeling "comfortable" in the sense of not being challenged... just that people are drawn to what works for them, and feels right. But its a good point, if the Buddha recommended something, and we don't do it simply cause we "don't like" that approach, this could be a warning sign, to try again...

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 5:04 am
by Monkey Mind
Apologies in advance for my ignorance. I am wondering about the experience of "bhango" that occurred on the Goenka retreat. For me it was a mind blowing experience that changed everything about how I practice, and how I conceive of the world and how I relate to it. Most other people on the retreat also experienced this "bhango", and stated that it also had a profound effect on them. Since then I have tried to find more information about this "bhango", and I come up empty handed. (Even know, as I Google it, my name is at the top of the list with a post from another forum....)

So was that an insight, a partial insight, the opening to insight, or none of the above? Goenkaji stated that many students return to the retreats to relive that experience, but that is not appropriate motivation as one should not become attached to it or crave it.

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 5:11 am
by retrofuturist
Greetings Monkey Mind,
Monkey Mind wrote:Since then I have tried to find more information about this "bhango", and I come up empty handed.
I'm pretty sure it's actually bhanga, which supposedly means dissolving, and is experienced as subtle high-frequency vibration.

Well, that's what I've heard/felt anyway.

Metta,
Retro. :)

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 5:22 am
by Monkey Mind
Thank you. That word provides more hits when I search.

Re: Vipassana - Insight Knowledge

Posted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 5:52 am
by tiltbillings
bhanga
Isn't that something you smoke in order to get a divine buzz?