November Newsbyte


Trust all is well!

All Past Tips
 Tip o’ the Day below

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I have been on my usual trips to teach, but the highlight this year was Mudita, the new Swiss meditation centre. It was a former children's activity centre and it works so well. The cows still have bells of course, but you can get used to anything - almost! It was delightful to teach there and the weather was blue skies, sharp sun and warm - very unseasonable. Anne Michell who is the teacher will be coning to teach a weekend retreat in December next year on Dhamma Dialogue, a great way to use discourse to explore ourselves.

By the time you get this Newsbyte, I shall be in Myanmar to pass a month at Panditarama meditation centre. I'll be back by the end of November. The refurbishment of the Kitchen will have started then.


Winter Mahasi :  Sat. 13 January – Sun. 11 March : 

I started a new long session of retreats last year and now mean to continue it indefinitely.

It is an eight weeks long and runs along the same lines as the Summer Mahasi,  except – only those can apply who have done at least one full week retreat here with any of the teachers or a week with a recognized Mahasi teacher.

Applications are open at the end of August as from now.

NB Applications are open for the Winter Mahasi, but for other retreats please don't apply till early January.
See website for 2018                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 ***Assistants Needed:         
                                                      Autumn Mahasi Retreat :  Noirin Sheahan : 04 Nov. – 10 Nov. The First week only.

Karuna Book: Every morning at puja we call the names of those who are sick or dying, or are having a hard time. 

Mudita Book: Every evening at puja we call the names of those who have something to rejoice about.

The Complete Calendar for 2017

Download PDF Calendar 2017

For Bhante’s courses away from Satipanya:

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

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. 

 Autumn Mahasi Retreat

04 Nov. – 26 Nov.

Noirin Sheahan

Assistant(s) : Needed for the first week only.
Mai Ryan for the last two weeks

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 : Gwen Sanderson

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 : Anne Ashton

 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. 

Day Retreat
Kick Start/Top up
Saturday 06 January

Bhante Bodhidhamma
Local Assistant : Needed
Arrive 09.30. Finish 17.00
Please bring veggie food to share.

Winter Mahasi
Bhante Bodhidhamma
Assistant(s) : May be needed
Eight week roll-on, roll-off Retreat.
Start dates restricted to these Saturdays :  
Sat 13 Jan – Sun 21 Jan : Sun 21 Jan – Sat 27 Jan
Sat 27 Jan – Sun 04 Feb : Sun 04 Feb – Sat 10 Feb
Sat 10 Feb – Sun 18 Feb : Sun 18 Feb – Sat 24 Feb
Sat 24 Feb – Sun 04 Mar : Sun 04 Mar – Sat 10 Mar
Finishing Sat 11 March
Open only to those who have at least one Mahasi Retreat
either at Satipanya or with another teacher
Alternate Sundays possible: 22 Jan.; 05 & 19 Feb.; 05 Mar.
You are encouraged to stay for more than one week.

Sat 13 Jan – Sat 27 Jan  Jim Tibby
Sat 27 Jan – Sat 10 Feb  Mark Blaxland
Sat 10 Feb – Sat 24 Feb 
Assistant : Needed
Sat 24 Feb – Sat 10 Mar  Mark Blaxland


One of the Hindrances is Sceptical Doubt. It is the doubt the stops ​us​ doing anything.

First time on a diving board and ​we​ doubt ​we​ can do it. It is fear​,​ of course​,​ th​at​ is rationalising. So you climb down. Applying for a job, a job ​for  which ​you doubt you have the ability. The mind offers a rational argument for your fear of failure. You doubt whether the person you love, can really love you, carbuncles and all, so you delay ​...​ and delay for fear of rejection. And they find someone else.

Sometimes you have to make a leap of faith. ​This is easier if we abando​n​ the notion that life is a series of successes and failures, and instead see it as an exploration - a series of trial and errors. Then we can jump. We can 'fail'. We can try again.

So it​ is​ with the Buddhadhamma.

​We may have all sorts of doubts. Doubts in the Teaching, in the practice, in the teacher and most often in ourselves.

There are ​also ​many teachings which may be difficult for us: not-self, karma and rebirth, transcendence and Nibbana, no​ Personal, all-loving​ God​. ​If we allow these doubts to overwhelm us, we will stop the practice. We will commit spiritual suicide!​

​Yet the Buddha does ask us to have doubt - an honest doubt. It is ​the wonder of the philosopher.

This wonder, this curiosity will overcome any fears we have. And fears there will be as we explore our unknown inner territory.

​For ​​t​he Buddha did not ask us to believe what he said, but question it. ​And he gave us a process on how to investigate; vipassana. ​To question not intellectually, but experientially. To discover whether his teachings are true for us.

This ​very​ exploration is the process of liberation​ for it dissolves our delusions.​ And it demands we overcome our sceptical doubts.

Such doubts often arise when we are asked to abandon our cherished certainties. But do we know whether these certainties are true by our own experience? Or are they rather beliefs we have unquestionably accepted on the word of others, of family tradition, of culture?

Can we ​r​emain in that place of ​'​don't know​'​, ​'​not sure​'​.

Why​ ​come to ​a ​conclusion ​anyway ​when in truth we don't ​actually whether it is true or not by our own personal experience.

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






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Directors - Richard Benjamin   Maureen Tibby   Jim Tibby    Mike Regan

Limited Company Number 05924965 Registered Charity Number 1116668

Satipanya, White Grit, Minsterley, Shropshire  SY5 0JN
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