New Year Newsbyte 2020

New Year 2020 NEWSBYTE
Trust all is well!

Wishing you are very fruitful 2020!
Peace and Goodwill to All Beings!

All Past Tips 
For Calendar and assistant opportunities see below .

Tip o' the Day   
see below

Happy New Year
Carl Fooks

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Diary: Just back from spending two months at Metta Vihara Buddhist Monastery in Algau, South Germany. A constant flow of around 15 meditators every week and a great atmosphere of calm and dedication. Bhante Nynanbodhi, a student of Ayya Khema, started this monastery and has been running it for 30 plus years! Puts my own effort at Satipanya in perecpective!

So this New Year starts with a very different political scene and an uncertain future. Simmering in the background is the  growing Climate Crisis. We must guard ourselves not to develop unwholesome and debilitating states of mind. It´s time for calm, for metta and clarity of aims. Carl hits the button in the Tip.

This year sees an extension of the Winter Mahasi to 11 weeks as it is in summer. The Ven. Mahasi Sayadaw said that if nothng happens in ten weeks, best to take a break. So now we have two occasions this year for those who have the time to come for the full 11 weeks. But, of course, even one week is benficial!

Announcements:   

Day retreat Saturday 4th Jan, Kick start / Top up. 9.30 - 5pm, bring vegie food to share.

London and South East Satipanya Sangha: Carl and Satipanya regular Animesh are interested in setting up a local Sangha for London and the South East. Location, frequency, and format are all undecided, and will depend on the interest and input of the early members. If this sounds of interest, please email satipanya-lse@genko.co.uk for more information.

Insight Timer 'Satipanya Mahasi Devotees' group set up on the Insight Timer app by Mark Arthur
Access website https://insighttimer.com/ for relevant App Store or Google Play link. Search for 'Satipanya Mahasi Devotees' within the ‘groups’ section on the app's front page and then request an invite from us.
At present the group settings are ‘private’ and access is available only for members who have sat on a retreat at Satipanya so we will therefore message you to check your credentials before approving your request. If you have any problems with the technology etc by all means email me on 
markarfa@gmail.comand I will be happy to assist. Metta Mark Arthur

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.

Click for Bhante's Away Courses

The Calendar for 2020

Vipassana as taught by the Mahasi Sayadaw of Burma

The Mahasi Sayadaw of Burma, one of the most influential vipassana insight meditation teachers of the last century, developed techniques to help us maintain moment to moment mindfulness from the instant we awake to the instant we fall asleep.
This leads not only to spiritual insights into our true, unborn-undying essence, but also, equally important, to the purification of the heart. So that we not only become wiser but more caring, generous, joyous and compassionate.

Applying the techniques on this retreat we follow a robust schedule, but meditators can modulate their practice to fit their level of experience, even absolute beginners. The accent is on relaxation and curiosity, rather than striving and concentration. And regular teacher contact, daily Q&A and personal interviews ensures students are supported throughout.

The retreat ends with advice on how to bring the practice into ordinary daily life to enhance our relationships and give spiritual meaning to our work and everyday tasks.

Assistants Needed

N.B. All the courses are serviced by assistants.
See website for up-to-date Assistant need: 
http://www.satipanya.org.uk/calendar/

As assistant  you have the opportunity to serve others. It can be a way of expressing gratitude for the gift of Dhamma. Although the morning is mainly taken up with breakfast preparation and cooking, the rest of day is for practice. You can see the menus here.
As an assistant, we do not expect payment of the deposit or make a donation because you have kindly offered your time.
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

Would you like to come and assist on a course?

Scroll down to see where we need you.

Teachers: Click on names for bio.
(See website calendar for updates)

Day Retreat
Kick Start/Top up
Saturday 04 January

Bhante Bodhidhamma
Local Assistants: Trevor Flaxman and Mary Ryan
Arrive 09.30. Finish 17.00
Please bring veggie food to share.

Three Month Winter Mahasi
APPLICATIONS OPEN NOW
Bhante Bodhidhamma
Eleven week roll-on, roll-off Retreat.
11 January - 28 March
Finishing Sat 28 March am
Open only to those who have at least one Mahasi Retreat 
either at Satipanya or with another teacher
You are encouraged to stay for more than one week.
Start dates restricted to these Saturdays:  11,25 Jan, 8,22 Feb, 7,21 March
11 Jan - 25 Jan Assistant  Jim Tibby

25 Jan   -    08 Feb   Assistant Iain McLeod
08 Feb  -    22 Feb    Assistant Iain McLeod
22 Feb  -    07 Mar    Assistant Patricia Smyth
07 Mar -    21 Mar    Assistant Toby Glynn
21 Mar -    28 Mar  Assistant Gaia Zocchi

 
APPLICATIONS START JANUARY 07
 

Easter Mahasi Retreat
Noirin Sheahan
Sat 11 April Sat. 25 April a.m.
(Possible start Sunday 19 April for Mahasi devotees)
Assistant : Needed
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. We 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.
The usual schedule and format – see website - easily modified for beginners.

 

Buddha Day
Honouring Our Teacher  and Exemplar
Taking Refuges and Precepts Ceremony 
On Saturday 02 May : Start 10.30 
Morning Meditation at 11.00
Please bring veggie finger communal lunch at noon
Ceremony starts 13.30
Afternoon Talk : Taking Refuges and Precepts : Procession
Tea and Biscuits 16.00


Vipassana : Metta : Bodycare 
Bhante Bodhidhamma
with Bryan Lester, Reiki Master
Assistant:
 Needed
Sat 02 – Weds 06 May 
Come Friday evening
if you want to join in Buddha Day Celebration

 

Mahasi Day Retreat
Jenny Birkett
Sat. 16 May
Assistant : Needed

The usual schedule and format – see website.
Especially for beginners.

Weeklong Mahasi Retreat
 Guus Went
Sat 23 May – Sun. 31 May.
Assistant : Needed

Sayadaw U Pandita's definition of Mindfulness: Mindfulness is the observing power of the mind, which clearly and simply experiences an object, without reacting to it.
We start actively to develop this power with the body as primary object. That makes it possible not to get fully entangled in the hindrances and to come to know something about them. Sitting meditation, walking meditation and daily activities are fully equal in importance. Gradually we come to know other objects of meditation, both internally and externally.
Practical thing: It is useful to take a small notebook and a pen, to make notes of observations after a session or during the day. This will be helpful to make the interview sessions useful and relaxed.
The usual schedule and format – see website.

Mahasi Weeklong Retreat
Carl Fooks
Sat 06 – Sun 14 June
Assistant : Needed

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.

The usual schedule and format – see website.

Summer Mahasi Retreat
Twelve week roll-on, roll-off Retreat.
Minimum stay eight nights.
Assistants : Needed (see below)
The usual schedule – see website - easily modified for beginners.

Noirin Sheahan
Start dates: Saturdays:-
20 June & 4 July
Finishing Sat 18 July
Alternate Sun. possible for Mahasi devotees: 05 & 19 July

Bhante Bodhidhamma
Start dates: Saturdays:-
18 July, 1, 15,  & 29 Aug.
Finishing Sun. 13 Sept
N.B. Start restricted to listed Saturdays.
Alternate Sun. possible for Mahasi devotees: 02 & 16 & 30 Aug,
You are encouraged to stay for more than one week.
Assistants : Needed
Starting and ending on following Saturday.
20 June – 04 July : Assistant Needed
04 July – 18 July : Assistant : Needed
18 July – 01 August : Assistant : Needed
01 – 15 August: Assistant : Needed
15 August – 29 August: Assistant : Needed
29 August – 06 September: Assistant : Needed
06 September Finishing Day

Sangha Day : Thirteenth Anniversary
Saturday 05 September
Assistant : Needed

Please bring veggie food to join us for communal lunch at noon.
Ceremony starts 13.30
Talk: To be announced.

Weekend Retreat 
Carl Fooks
Fri. 18 – Sun. 20 September
Assistant : Needed

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.
See usual weekend schedule.

Insight Dialogue
Anne Michel
 Sat.17 – Sat. 24 a.m. October
Assistant : Needed
Insight Dialogue – created by Gregory Kramer 
http://www.metta.org – brings the mindfulness and tranquility of traditional silent meditation practice into our interaction with others.
Depending on conditions inside us and around us, our perceptions of others and ourselves, we can open the heart with wisdom or create and sustain habitual patterns of stress and reactivity.
Insight Dialogue Practice allows us to face the complexity of our relationships with mindfulness.
Such experience softens our fears of relationship and diminishes our struggle to be seen or to escape the moment of contact.
Trust and calm can settle in us, anchored in wisdom and compassion.
It is a very good complement to the Vipassana practice, allowing both concentration and relationship habits to deepen.
The retreat is open to both beginners and long-term practitioners

 Mahasi Monthlong Retreat
Noirin Sheahan
Start dates Sat 31 Oct. and 14 Nov.
Mahasi devotees can join on Sundays 08 or 22 Nov
Ends Sat am 28 Nov.
Assistant Sat 31 Oct.  - Sat. 14 Nov. : Needed
Assistant Sat.14 Nov. - Sat. 28 Nov.: Needed
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. We 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.
The usual schedule and format – see website - easily modified for beginners.

Bhante's Away Calendar
 

Happy New Year
Carl Fooks

I remember the first time I was allowed to go to my parents’ perennial New Year’s Eve party. I don’t remember how young I was, but I remember feeling excited to be present for the grand crossing over of one year to the next. I don’t know what I was expecting but it was something noticeable and significant. Something like the machinery of the universe whirling and clunking over into The New Year.

As the time drew near—“how long mum?”, “is it near yet?”—my excitement and anticipation grew. “It won’t be long now,” my mum would assure me. And then … it was here. The music went off, the radio went on, the count down began with the chiming of Big Ben’s bells: “ten, nine, eight, seven,” my excited expectation reaching fever pitch. “Three, two, one.” And then … nothing! Well, except for cheering adults and a drunken rendition of Auld Lang Syne.

I can’t begin to tell you how disappointed I was. I had spent the preceding couple of years pretending to be asleep in bed while the adults celebrated, but would creep out to try to witness The Big Event, always to fall asleep near the time, waking up only with the cheer after It had happened.

Charged up with excited anticipation about finally witnessing my first New Year, I was left wondering what on earth was wrong with my parents and their friends!

Thus New Year struck me as rather pointless. Particularly when I became old enough to be pressured into making New Year’s Resolutions. I couldn’t work out what was wrong with my behaviour that I had to change it by resolving to do something different, especially given nobody continued with their’s beyond the first few weeks anyway. It seemed to me to be a time of collective delusion. First of all with The Big Event that wasn’t, and then with resolutions that, well, aren’t.

None of which is intended to say that making resolutions is pointless. On the contrary, resolving to do something can be really helpful. A common mistake with resolutions, at any time of the year, is the way we relate to them, engage with them. If we’re not paying lip-service to the tradition, we typically choose something we really want to change and we put in a Herculean effort for the first few weeks that is unsustainable. Eventually, we burn out and give up.

This, of course, is a simile of our relationship to the Dhamma. Burning brightly with interest and good-will, we throw ourselves in only to find ourselves unable to sustain the pace. We are sprinting for the marathon. The Buddha, of course, knew this about us and came up with a factor of the Noble Eightfold Path for exactly this: Right Resolve (sammā-saṅkappa), also variously translated as Right Thought, Right Intention, Right Aspiration; “a right way of thinking/aspiring, which has a balancing warmth.”

This is taught as the intention to move away from greed, ill-will, and cruelty, towards peaceful renunciation, lovingkindness, and compassion. I don’t know about you, but when I first heard this, it sounded so far away from what was possible, it seemed unachievable. What was missing, for me, was this “balancing warmth”, and it is that which makes it sustainable.

So rather than choosing resolutions that will effectively punish us, we need to find ways of orientating towards them gently, with warmth, compassion, and kindness. This helps make them sustainable and easier to integrate into our lives.

If you fail to receive a monthly NEWSBYTE, please, look in spam or re-establish the email by filling in the form in MAILING LIST at the bottom of the front page of the website.

Many thanks.

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

Metta
Onward
Bodhidhamma

 


SATIPANYA  BUDDHIST TRUST
www.satipanya.org.uk
Directors - Jim Tibby    Richard Benjamin   Maureen Tibby   Mike Regan
Limited Company Number 05924965 Registered Charity Number 1116668
Satipanya, White Grit, Minsterley, Shropshire  SY5 0JN
T: 0044 (0)1588 650752
info: info@satipanya.org.uk

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