About Insight Meditation

Mindfulness is a practice rooted in ancient Eastern traditions, particularly Buddhism and has been practiced for over 2,500 years. Mindfulness means to pay attention in an open, non-judgmental way to what is occurring in one’s immediate experience with care and discernment.  This practice encourages individuals to observe their thoughts, emotions, and sensations with an attitude of curiosity, acceptance, and compassion. The benefits of mindfulness meditation are well known and studies suggest that focusing on the present can have a positive impact on mental, physical health and well-being.   

The Insight Meditation retreats at Sangsurya are all rooted in this ancient and well-mapped path to awakening. The core teachings found in the Satipatthana Sutta or Anapanasati Sutta, also know as the four foundations of mindfulness, are most commonly taught on retreat.

Insight Meditation Retreats cover a range of mindfulness practices, contemplative inquiry and movement practices.  Daily meditation instructions include: 

*Cultivating the four foundations of mindfulness from the Sattipatthana Sutta and Anapanasati Sutta.   

*Inquiry into the nature of mind, the habitual patterns of thinking that cause distress and suffering and understanding the cause and effect relationship.  

*The cultivation of the boundless heart qualities of; love, compassion, joy and equanimity.  

*Mindful movement practices – walking meditation and healing practices of Qigong or Yoga guided by qualified teachers.  

Four Foundations of Mindfulness:   

1. Mindfulness of body, breath, posture & movement.  Also includes contemplation of anatomical parts, 4 elements, earth, water, fire and air, as well as contemplation of death and decay.  

2. Mindfulness of feeling: Unpleasant, pleasant and neutral which is the affective tone that underlies all our experience.  

3. Mindfulness of mind states: thoughts, concepts, beliefs, perceptions and inquiry into consciousness itself.    

4. Mindfulness of Dharma: the larger body of knowledge of the path, a philosophical and ethical map of the territory; the 4 Noble truths, eight-fold noble path, cultivating integrity and observing ethical behaviour the boundless heart teachings, dependent arising and the awakening factors.   

By practicing Insight Meditation and the four foundations of mindfulness participants aim to reduce their overall arousal and emotional reactivity and gain a deeper sense of calm. Mindfulness enhances clear comprehension and when paired with inquiry brings perspective, balance and freedom. It develops the capacity to embrace and live life to our fullest potential with greater contentment and peace of mind. Its liberating power supports inquiry into our whole mind, body process from a place of stillness and equanimity. It allows us to see clearly into the true nature of reality and live with greater happiness,
freedom, wisdom and compassion.