mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

On the cultivation of insight/wisdom
User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23044
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by tiltbillings » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:27 am

alan wrote:It means responding to your needs instead of mindlessly sticking with the program. The Goenka people were adamant about not differing from the technique, which chafed.
You mean that that your self did not like it, so it came up with a creative way of justifying not doing it.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 19961
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by retrofuturist » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:31 am

Greetings,
tiltbillings wrote:
alan wrote:It means responding to your needs instead of mindlessly sticking with the program. The Goenka people were adamant about not differing from the technique, which chafed.
You mean that that your self did not like it, so it came up with a creative way of justifying not doing it.
That seems rather uncharitable.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23044
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by tiltbillings » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:45 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,
tiltbillings wrote:
alan wrote:It means responding to your needs instead of mindlessly sticking with the program. The Goenka people were adamant about not differing from the technique, which chafed.
You mean that that your self did not like it, so it came up with a creative way of justifying not doing it.
That seems rather uncharitable.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Chafed, a bit of dukkha, and dukkha is when things are not as one wants them to be. In the context of a meditation retreat it might have been a good thing to experience the chafing. There might be something to be learned, or one can find fault, criticize and move on to something more creative. Hard to say where to draw a line here between giving into the self not wanting to be chafed and moving on to something more productive/creative, or staying with the discomfort. Always, however, the self is more than happy to undermine anything that threatens it, and it can be very, very creative in doing so. It is something that we all deal with to one degree or another all the time.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

MisterRunon
Posts: 64
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 6:43 pm

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by MisterRunon » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:51 am

alan wrote:It means responding to your needs instead of mindlessly sticking with the program. The Goenka people were adamant about not differing from the technique, which chafed. No one there had any answers besides astonishing me for not staying correct with their strict interpretation of what should be done.
Ah yes, the technique is certainly more rigid. Another metaphor would be another technique, such as Mahasis', being a swiss army knife that is multipurpose. Goenka's style is more of like having a hammer. It packs quite the punch, but it's not going to open your letter for you.

alan
Posts: 3087
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by alan » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:54 am

Of course, any personal opinion can be described as selfish or unworthy, if one chooses to characterize it negatively. And anyone can do that. But is there any value in it?
I volunteered my impressions at a Goenka retreat for the benefit of those who might be wondering if it would be right for them. It wasn't to prove a point or make myself look good, but for the sake of others who might be asking the same question. AllI ask is that it is taken as an honest statement of my experience.

User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23044
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by tiltbillings » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:56 am

MisterRunon wrote:
alan wrote:It means responding to your needs instead of mindlessly sticking with the program. The Goenka people were adamant about not differing from the technique, which chafed. No one there had any answers besides astonishing me for not staying correct with their strict interpretation of what should be done.
Ah yes, the technique is certainly more rigid. Another metaphor would be another technique, such as Mahasis', being a swiss army knife that is multipurpose. Goenka's style is more of like having a hammer. It packs quite the punch, but it's not going to open your letter for you.
How far down the Goenka practice road have you gone? I am wondering if long-time student might not see t a bit differently.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

MisterRunon
Posts: 64
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 6:43 pm

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by MisterRunon » Fri Dec 12, 2014 4:08 am

tiltbillings wrote:
MisterRunon wrote:
alan wrote:It means responding to your needs instead of mindlessly sticking with the program. The Goenka people were adamant about not differing from the technique, which chafed. No one there had any answers besides astonishing me for not staying correct with their strict interpretation of what should be done.
Ah yes, the technique is certainly more rigid. Another metaphor would be another technique, such as Mahasis', being a swiss army knife that is multipurpose. Goenka's style is more of like having a hammer. It packs quite the punch, but it's not going to open your letter for you.
How far down the Goenka practice road have you gone? I am wondering if long-time student might not see t a bit differently.
About 18 months, 5 courses sat and 3 served. My opinion is just what it is though.. I'm not saying everyone else sees it that way. I have met a few students (while serving) who have been with his network for quite a long time, and to be honest, they don't seem to be doing better at all. One guy was throwing a tantrum and getting mad at every other server.. the funny thing was that he was the male manager. Another one was the kitchen manager, and she is still extremely cynical, negative, and skeptical. Maybe it has more to do with her than the network/technique, who knows.

To be fair, I know a few people who have had their lives changed thanks to Goenka and his contributions. I know of a couple who do a combined 20 10 day sits or serves per year.. and they're very well entrenched in the Dhamma. The problem is that they don't really know much outside of the Goenka bubble and take his word for Gospel. They are my friends, but I think the reason why it fits for them is that they don't like to ask a lot of questions (which is neither a good nor a bad thing to me). They are told what the rules are, and they just follow them.

Sanjay PS
Posts: 311
Joined: Thu Sep 26, 2013 2:26 pm

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by Sanjay PS » Fri Dec 12, 2014 4:13 am

MisterRunon wrote:
alan wrote:It means responding to your needs instead of mindlessly sticking with the program. The Goenka people were adamant about not differing from the technique, which chafed. No one there had any answers besides astonishing me for not staying correct with their strict interpretation of what should be done.
Ah yes, the technique is certainly more rigid. Another metaphor would be another technique, such as Mahasis', being a swiss army knife that is multipurpose. Goenka's style is more of like having a hammer. It packs quite the punch, but it's not going to open your letter for you.[/quot

Well "opening the letter" will depend person to person :smile: For many it opens not just a letter , but a dam :smile: and this also holds true for other traditions , so long as there is no compromise on Sila Sammadhi and Panna . Neither being obssesed with Sila , nor being under the illusion that paying no importance to Sila , one can very well progress in Dhamma . As rightly described it is a middle path , but not a middle path that is to be suited to ones own convenience :smile:

As Goenkaji mentions , if you find one particular tradition suitable , then stick to it and make it a life long commitment , nothing to gain if one digs here and there all the time and keeps on just moving and testing . The purpose does not get served .
The Path of Dhamma

The path of Dhamma is no picnic . It is a strenuous march steeply up the hill . If all the comrades desert you , Walk alone ! Walk alone ! with all the Thrill !!

U S.N. Goenka

alan
Posts: 3087
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by alan » Fri Dec 12, 2014 4:27 am

..
Last edited by alan on Sat Dec 13, 2014 2:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
badscooter
Posts: 403
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:07 am
Location: New Jersey

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by badscooter » Fri Dec 12, 2014 2:19 pm

mikenz66 wrote:
Billymac29 wrote:As for monastics, venerable Analayao stated that he practices the Goenka method as one of his meditation practices.

Kind regards
That's interesting. In the talks I've heard from Ven Analyo I recall him saying that he used metta as a daily practice and elements for formal sitting. However, it's been a while since I listened to them:
http://www.audiodharma.org/teacher/208/
http://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/439/

Perhaps of some relevance to the topic, the first link contains a talk, "Dynamics of Insight of Meditation", where he compares teachings on Satipatthana from Mahasi, Goenka, and Pa Auk. It's a nice presentation, but he didn't give the impression that he had personally practised any of them at great length at the time of the talk.

:anjali:
Mike
Yes that's correct Mike, I heard him say he uses metta as his main "samatha practice" instead of the breath. And he tends to keep that as his object of mediation throughout the day. But I have heard him also state that he does a body sweeping meditation quite like that of goenka.
I believe he states here http://www.wiseattention.org/blog/2012/ ... n-analayo/that he uses or used the goenka technique as one of the techniques for body contemplation.

kind regards
"whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon will be the inclination of one's mind"

User avatar
badscooter
Posts: 403
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:07 am
Location: New Jersey

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by badscooter » Fri Dec 12, 2014 2:23 pm

Travis wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:
Billymac29 wrote:As for monastics, venerable Analayao stated that he practices the Goenka method as one of his meditation practices.

Kind regards
That's interesting. In the talks I've heard from Ven Analyo I recall him saying that he used metta as a daily practice and elements for formal sitting. However, it's been a while since I listened to them:
http://www.audiodharma.org/teacher/208/
http://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/439/

Perhaps of some relevance to the topic, the first link contains a talk, "Dynamics of Insight of Meditation", where he compares teachings on Satipatthana from Mahasi, Goenka, and Pa Auk. It's a nice presentation, but he didn't give the impression that he had personally practised any of them at great length at the time of the talk.

:anjali:
Mike
He mentions it here http://www.wiseattention.org/blog/2012/ ... n-analayo/
Analayo wrote:I have been practising the Goenka technique for ten years and I got very good results with it. But I wouldn’t say that it’s the only correct technique.
thanks I didnt see this... ignore my previous post.
"whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon will be the inclination of one's mind"

User avatar
mikenz66
Posts: 16281
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: Aotearoa, New Zealand

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by mikenz66 » Fri Dec 12, 2014 8:57 pm

Thanks Billymac and Travis. It's interesting to have these perspectives.

:anjali:
Mike

nintendo
Posts: 40
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 3:42 pm

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by nintendo » Sat Dec 13, 2014 7:18 am

Is body scanning is presant in mahasi vipassana

SarathW
Posts: 9581
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by SarathW » Sat Dec 13, 2014 7:47 am

When we comparing teachers we should not forget that they all come under the umbrella of Sangha.
There are other two aspect of this equation, that is Buddha and Dhamma.
We always remember that Dhamma is our teacher and Sangha is the Kalyanmitt.
:thinking:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
mikenz66
Posts: 16281
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: Aotearoa, New Zealand

Re: mahasi vipassana vs goenka vipassana

Post by mikenz66 » Sat Dec 13, 2014 11:21 am

nintendo wrote:Is body scanning is presant in mahasi vipassana
"Mahasi Vipassana" is a very broad term, since variations are taught in thousands of places. Some teachers I've had experience with sometimes advised some body scanning, probably because they also had experience with Goenka courses.

To me the key thing about the Mahasi approach is the use of an anchoring, or "primary" object to develop concentration (which is typically abdominal motion and motion of the feet while walking) and the moving of attention to whatever else arises (sensations, thoughts, etc) --- the "secondary objects". When concentration gets strong it can be useful to add more objects, such as the feeling of sitting and touching, between the breaths.
Mahasi also recommends a "naming" technique to focus attention on the objects and minimise mental proliferation.

Both the Mahasi and Goenka approaches seem designed to bring one face to face with impermanence. The Mahasi approach by paying attention to all the different objects that arise (and then disappear), the Goenka by scanning through the body, which invariably is changing.

I don't think the particular objects or what particular strategy you use to discern them, are that important. One could use knitting rather than walking or breathing.... The important thing is the development of careful attention to what is arising, so all these techniques are just implementations of:
"And what is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to mindfulness & alertness? There is the case where feelings are known to the monk as they arise, known as they persist, known as they subside. Perceptions are known to him as they arise, known as they persist, known as they subside. Thoughts are known to him as they arise, known as they persist, known as they subside. This is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to mindfulness & alertness.

"And what is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents? There is the case where a monk remains focused on arising & falling away with reference to the five clinging-aggregates: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its passing away. Such is feeling, such its origination, such its passing away. Such is perception, such its origination, such its passing away. Such are fabrications, such their origination, such their passing away. Such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.' This is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents.
http://suttacentral.net/search?query=an+4.41
At Savatthi. “Bhikkhus, a bhikkhu should dwell mindful and clearly comprehending. This is our instruction to you.

“And how, bhikkhus, is a bhikkhu mindful? Here, bhikkhus, a bhikkhu dwells contemplating the body in the body … feelings in feelings … mind in mind … phenomena in phenomena, ardent, clearly comprehending, mindful, having removed covetousness and displeasure in regard to the world. It is in this way, bhikkhus, that a bhikkhu is mindful.

“And how, bhikkhus, does a bhikkhu exercise clear comprehension? Here, bhikkhus, for a bhikkhu feelings are understood as they arise, understood as they remain present, understood as they pass away. Thoughts are understood as they arise, understood as they remain present, understood as they pass away. Perceptions are understood as they arise, understood as they remain present, understood as they pass away. It is in this way, bhikkhus, that a bhikkhu exercises clear comprehension.

“Bhikkhus, a bhikkhu should dwell mindful and clearly comprehending. This is our instruction to you.”
http://suttacentral.net/en/sn47.35
:anjali:
Mike

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 9 guests