April Newsbyte


Trust all is well!

All Past Tips

 Tip o’ the Day below


I’ll be in Japan when you receive this letter. Back on 22nd. Hope to tell you some tales on return. Sorry don’t do blogging.


Meditation Teacher Training: If you have a done a few courses and think you might like to run a group or would like to know how you might introduce a friend, do apply. (See below)

On-Line Course: Noirin will again be leading on-line courses this year, to support your home practice and help integrate the wisdom you gain on retreat with ordinary daily life. This years course focuses on the Four Noble Truths and will run for 6 weeks. One course starts in June, the second one in October. Open to all who attend a retreat at Satipanya during the year.  Email noirinsheahan@gmail.com to register or for further information.


***Assistants: Plenty of opportunity to come and serve. It’s still a retreat for you. Up to six hours sitting practice is possible and an occasion to bring the practice into ‘ordinary daily life’ tasks. It does help if you have done a retreat in the Mahasi tradition – if only a weekend. Or any long vipassana retreat whatever the tradition.

Mahasi Tradition: Participants are needed to take part in research concerning the experiences of experienced Vipassana meditators (Mahasi tradition). This is a study being conducted by Chimen Ekici, an undergraduate psychology student at the University of Derby, UK. Email for further info:

Çimen Ekici <C.Ekici1@unimail.derby.ac.uk> Interview for about one hour. Do help out!

Treasurer’s Note

Introducing our New Treasurer

I would like to take this opportunity of introducing Richard Benjamin, who has taken over the task of Treasurer of the Satipanya Trust, from Mike Regan. I am sure many of you know Richard, he has been a committed member of the Satipanya community for many years and has fulfilled different roles, builder, manager and recently a prime organiser for Bhante's birthday. Richard’s bio is on the website.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Mike for his help as treasurer and his continued role as a Trustee.

Rob Poleykett
Chair of the Trust

In Rob’s last Treasurer’s Note in October last year, he says, ‘costs always outrun expectations’. Well, Bhante has kept you in touch with the whole building process, but has kept secret the amount that it actually finally cost.

It was billed for about £200k It did come close at £206,909. On top of that with all the earth works and the additional expense of the PV panels on the roof, another £35k. All the expenses are not paid yet, such as 5% retainage of the builder about £5K. 

Unfortunately the building cannot be used as yet since there are some fire prevention that we have to do and that will also add to our cost. Hopefully it will be up and running by the end of April.

So the upshot is: please continue to donate and if you can offer a little extra, please do so.

If you have not yet donated to the project, do consider doing so. It’s very easy these days to make a small recurring donation through PayPal  http://www.satipanya.org.uk/donations/

However, if you prefer to offer by way of Internet Banking the details are below.

Meanwhile Bhante has tripped off to Japan!

Here’s where you can see the whole project unfold:  Accommodation Block

Richard Benjamin



The Complete Calendar for 2017

Download PDF Calendar 2017

Assistants Needed

N.B. All the courses are serviced by assistants.
As an assistant, we do not expect payment of the deposit because you have kindly offered your time.
And as usual any dana by you is entirely in your gift.
However, your commitment is essential, for the course would be very difficult to run without an assistant and may indeed have to be cancelled. 

If you are interested, follow this link: Course Assistant  

For info. about Retreats and teachers see website www.satipanya.org.uk

See drop down menus: especially About Us, Teachings and Retreats 

If you would like to come and assist on a course?
Scroll down to see where we need you. 

Click on teacher names for bio. 

Easter Mahasi Retreat
Sat. 15 – Sun. 30 April

Noirin Sheahan

Assistant : Dario Alvino : John MacDougall

The usual schedule and format – see website.

Preference given to those who want to stay two weeks.

Vipassana means “Seeing clearly”. When we see the world as it really is, we will be free from the distress that comes from identifying with a limited view of who and what we are.
During the retreat, we relax from all our usual busyness to give our full attention to present experience. 
e learn to see the world more clearly, and to disentangle the knots of confusion that bind us to emotional turmoil. 
At precious moments, the heart opens and we may sense what it means to be free.

 Buddha Day

Saturday  29 April

Bhante Bodhidhamma
 Celebrating the Life of the Buddha

 Taking Refuges and Precepts Ceremony

Please bring veggie food to join us for communal lunch at noon.

Ceremony starts 13.30 

Mahasi Weeklong Retreat
Sat. 20 – Sun. 28 May
Noirin Sheahan

Assistant : Ann Nemo
The usual schedule and format – see website.

See above for Noirin’s description.

Meditation Teacher Training

Sat. 3 June – Sun. 11 June 

Bhante Bodhidhamma

Assistant : Needed

Please contact Bhante direct if you wish to join this course. 

It is for those who have a regular daily Mahasi practice 

and who wish to start a group or be able to teach individuals 

 or have some vague desire that they might like to do so. 

Mahasi Weeklong Retreat
Sat 17th – Sun 25th June
Carl Fooks

Assistant : Needed

The usual schedule and format – see website.

The Mahasi system can feel challenging, and its emphasis on moment-to-moment mindfulness can prove to feel particularly difficult.
Carl teaches a gentle approach to the practice encouraging a skilful and effective orientation that helps practitioners to commit themselves fully to the practice and the schedule, and thereby get the most out of the course.

Summer Mahasi Retreat
Bhante Bodhidhamma

Assistant : Needed

Eleven week roll-on, roll-off Retreat.
Minimum stay eight nights.

Start dates: Saturdays:-
01 & 15 & 29 July; 12 & 26 Aug. 09 Sept.
Finishing Sun. 17  Sept

Celebration Sat 16. See below

N.B. Start restricted to listed Saturdays.
Alternate Sun. possible for Mahasi devotees.

A challenging Retreat easily modified for beginners.
See Beginner’s Testimonials on website.

You are encouraged to stay for more than one week.

Assistants : Needed

Starting and ending on following Saturday.

01 – 15 July : Ulla Mergen

15 July – 29 July : Assistant : Jean Anderson

29 July – 12 August : Assistant : Gwen Sanderson

12 – 26 August: Assistant : Rosalie Dores

26 August – 09 September: Assistant : Grace Kelly

09 – 17 (Sunday) September: Assistant : Dea Paradisos

Sangha Day : Ninth Anniversary
Saturday 16 September

Please bring veggie food to join us for communal lunch at noon.

Ceremony starts 13.30
Talk: To be announced. 

Weekend Retreat 
Fri. 29 Sept. – Sun.01 p.m. October
Carl Fooks

Assistants : Needed

See usual weekend Schedules

Mahasi Two Week Retreat
Noirin Sheahan

Preference given to those who want to stay two weeks.

Assistant : Needed

Sat. 07 Oct.  – Sun. 22 October

The usual schedule and format – see website. 

Day Retreat
Saturday 28 October

Local Assistant : Needed

Jenny Birkett

 Kick Start/Top

Arrive 09.30. Finish 17.00
Please bring veggie food to share.

Autumn Mahasi Retreat
04 Nov. – 26 Nov.

Noirin Sheahan

Assistant(s) : Needed

Preference is given to those who wish to stay for the full three weeks.
The usual schedule and format – see website. 

Day Retreat
Kick Start/Top up

Saturday 16 December

Bhante Bodhidhamma

Local Assistant : Needed

Arrive 09.30. Finish 17.00

Please bring veggie food to share.

New Year Retreat

Fri. 29 December to Tues. 02 January

Bhante Bodhidhamma

Assistant : Needed

 N.B. This retreat is reserved for those who have completed a Retreat as Satipanya.
The first day will be a normal retreat schedule though we shall rise at 5.30.
An opportunity to make it a day of fasting
in solidarity with the one in nine people undernourished and starving.

On the second day, the Eve, we will see in the New Year.
During a group event, you will be asked to tell us about an event which has had a effect upon you - international, national or local or personal.
A day to reflect on the past year, plenty of time to oneself.

Retreatants will be asked to say a little about an virtuous event chosen by them.
The third day, New Years Day, is communal with a walk – weather permitting. 

For Bhante’s courses away from Satipanya:



Equanimity is not the sort of word you hear very often. As for myself, I didn’t really know what it meant. Something about balanced mind.

In the Buddha’s teaching, it is arguably the most important of all virtues. For sitting on the bed of equanimity, the other virtues are less likely to be corrupted into their direct or subtle enemies. And we are more likely ‘to see things as they really are’.

Every virtue has its opposite: love and hatred, generosity and greed, courage and cowardice and so on. And more subtle ones too: love and attachment, generosity and overly generous excessive largesse detrimental to oneself or the other or both: courage and fool hardiness? Even equanimity has a subtle enemy – indifference.

Equanimity is a quality we would expect of a judge. We don’t expect them to be seduced by the clever arguments of the lawyers.  They are to be unbiased. We don’t expect them to be persuaded by the baying the crowd. They are to be impartial. We do not expect them to be angry with the criminal so clouding their sentencing. Or indeed fearful of possible reprisals from a guilty criminal. On summing up and guiding the jury and eventual sentencing, they are not meant to come from a personal angle, but from the position of the law.  

So it is with equanimity in ordinary daily life.  Do we know our biases? Do we only read, listen and talk to those who have the same? Do we take the position of ‘I’m right’?. Or more subtly ‘we’re right’?. It always feels more right-eous when others agree with us.

In a quiet moment when we can talk to ourselves truthfully, what do we really think about politics, sexual identities, religion and other questions of our time? And then how we really feel. Do they match up? Are there hidden darknesses we have kept secret even from ourselves?.  Little prejudices that our ideal sense of self has not really allowed or accepted? ‘If I thought that, it wouldn’t be me.’

Imagine yourself to be a Buddha. How does that effect your views and feelings? Do we have the humility to accept that?

So when are we equanimous? When we come into any given situation without prejudice, without fear, without anger and without preference.

Mmmm. Well, that’s where we are aiming.


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Many thanks.

Finally, please forward this email if you know someone who may be interested. Thanks.





Away Calendar





Directors - Rob Poleykett, Richard Benjamin, Dea Paradisos, Jim Tibby

Limited Company Number 05924965 Registered Charity Number 1116668

Satipanya, White Grit, Minsterley, Shropshire  SY5 0JN
0044 (0)1588 650752  email: bodhidhamma@satipanya.org.uk  info: info@satipanya.org.uk



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