Insight (vipassana)

Unique to Buddhism, the meditation practice of self-observation that reveals the true nature of reality
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    Commit to Sit: Week Three, Emotions & Hindrances Paid Member

    WEEK THREE: Emotions & HindrancesHalfway there! Until now, you have been experiencing emotions and hindrances during your meditation periods, but the instructions have been to focus on the breath and the body. This week you will devote more attention to these emotions and hindrances and become more skillful in dealing with them. In order to do this, we investigate the nature of these experiences as they happen. This week, as your daily time commitment increases to two thirty-minute meditation sessions and two walking periods, you will continue to work with the breath and the body while putting particular attention on emotions like anger and hindrances like restlessness. The following guided meditations provide instructions for working with the hindrances and emotions. Guided Meditation: Handling Hindrances More »
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    Undivided Mind Paid Member

    Over the last half-century, Buddhist practices in the West have grown in popularity. Mindfulness has become associated with stress reduction, enhanced immunological protection, psychological well-being, and profound states of happiness. In many cases, mindfulness has been uncoupled from the Buddha’s teaching altogether and is a stand-alone cognitive therapy for the treatment of various mental difficulties, from depression to obsessive-compulsive disorder. More »
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    A Glob of Tar Paid Member

    EVEN THOUGH WE PRACTICE, we continue to fall for pleasant feelings. Feelings are illusory on many levels. We don't realize that they're changeable and unreliable. Instead of offering pleasure, they offer us nothing but stress—yet we're still addicted to them. This business of feeling is a very subtle matter. Please try to contemplate it carefully, this latching onto feelings of pleasure, pain, or equanimity. And you have to experiment with pain more than you may want to. When there are feelings of physical pain or mental distress, the mind will struggle because it doesn't like pain. But when pain turns to pleasure the mind likes it and is content with it. So it keeps on playing with feeling even though, as we've already said, feeling is inconstant, stressful, and not really ours. But the mind doesn't see this. More »
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    Basic Insight Meditation Instructions Paid Member

    Sit on the floor, legs crossed. (If this is uncomfortable you can sit in a chair. Those who are ill may do this exercise lying down.) Close your eyes or leave them open. Focus your attention on a spot on the abdomen along the body’s vertical midline.As the abdomen expands during respiration, watch the movement with your mind, from beginning to end. When it contracts, do the same. Continue watching the abdominal motions, one after another, keeping your attention in the immediate present moment.Rather than focusing on the breath or the abdomen’s shape, observe the motion itself, experienced as a tactile sensation of pressure. Breathe naturally and follow the movements lightly, keeping your mind on the surface of the abdomen. You don’t have to concentrate too hard. If you have difficulty perceiving the movements, put your hands on your stomach. More »
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    A Quiver of the Heart Paid Member

    © Rami Efal Compassion is known in Buddhist teaching as the quivering of the heart in response to pain or suffering. Finding the right relationship to pain, both ours and that of others, is very complex, because pain can be a tremendously powerful teacher and an opening. It can also be the cause of terrible anger and separation. We can be filled with loneliness and resentment because we’re in pain; we can feel very isolated because we’re in pain; we can feel a lot of guilt in a state of grief, blaming ourselves for something we did or something we didn’t do or something we didn’t say. We can blame ourselves for seemingly being ineffectual in a world that needs so much help. More »
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    In the Blink of an Eye Paid Member

    HOW FAR AWAY from one another are suffering and the end of suffering? The distance can be traversed in the blink of an eye. That is the good news delivered to us by the Buddha in the Indriyabhavana Sutta, the very last text of the Middle-Length Discourses (Majjhima-nikaya 152). In an exchange with a Brahmin student named Uttara, the teaching begins with a description of something universal in human experience: More »