How can a newbie go on a longer retreat with guidance?

Niel Malhotra, modified 9 Years ago at 7/4/13 4:39 PM
Created 9 Years ago at 7/4/13 4:39 PM

How can a newbie go on a longer retreat with guidance?

Post: 1 Join Date: 7/4/13 Recent Posts
Hi all,

I've tried several different practices in the past, but none of them did anything. I stopped doing any practice for a while when I stumbled upon daniel ingram's stuff. I love his practical and rational tone. So, I've decided to give vipassana meditation a shot and see what happens. I'm doing concentration meditation on the breath for now, and will then go on to insight mediattion once I've stabilized my concentration.

Daniel talks about the importance of longer meditation retreats, and I'd love to do one. I potentially have some time starting in September to go on a longer meditation retreat. I was hoping to go for at least a month, if not two or three. I figure it's going to be hard with a career to consistently get a month off, so I'm going to make time while I have the chance.

I've looked into all the reatreat centers listed, and I can't seem to find one which will allow a beginner like me to go on an extended retreat that will have a good teacher around. Spirit Rock offers nice 7 day courses and a wait list for the month long course. I would love to go on a self retreat at the Forest Refuge in Barre, MA, but it says that you must have sat for one six week course or six one week courses. Those are very hard to come by.

I can do a goenka retreat, but I'd like something longer and with a more practical focus, like daniel advocates.

Also, I could pick some other place to do a completely self guided retreat, but I'd really like some guidance to help me along.

To sum up, where can I go to do an extended retreat with practical guidance in insight meditation?
katy steger,thru11615 with thanks, modified 9 Years ago at 7/4/13 5:58 PM
Created 9 Years ago at 7/4/13 5:58 PM

RE: How can a newbie go on a longer retreat with guidance?

Posts: 1740 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
Hi Niel,

Welcome to this forum.

If you cannot find something longer (which would probably be available in Thailand or Sri Lanka) then starting with a seven-day retreat or the 10-day Goenka would be useful. These are likely to feel plenty long and to help "get the party started".

You've read Daniel's book so you are aware of various "knowledges" in which you may depart such a retreat. That's very helpful.

Once you complete one retreat, it may be easier to be accepted to another retreat, such as a month-long

I would not recommend a self-guided retreat to start unless someone had a consistently calm, studious, kindly and disciplined demeanor in regards to themselves and others.

Best wishes!
Daniel M Ingram, modified 9 Years ago at 7/5/13 4:17 AM
Created 9 Years ago at 7/5/13 4:17 AM

RE: How can a newbie go on a longer retreat with guidance?

Posts: 3240 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Asia has most of the best places to do what you are looking to do.

Thailand is probably one of the best places, though there is a Mahasi place in Nepal also that is known to be good.

MBMC varies in quality: I don't know about it's current teacher or state of function.

There is a Mahasi center in New Jersey that a friend of mine did a retreat in: it is small and he sat in their attic.

I also don't recommend a solo retreat until you know what you are doing.

Hopefully others will chime in with some suggestions for places,