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Location & Programs

Eastworks, 2nd Floor
116 Pleasant Street
Suite 242
Easthampton, MA 01027-2755
413-527-0388
general@insightpv.org
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What is Insight Meditation?

Insight Meditation, also known as Vipassana or mindfulness meditation, originated in the Theravada School of Buddhism, now primarily located in India, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, and Burma. Vipassana, which means "to see clearly", is the simple practice of moment to moment awareness which leads to the development of wisdom and compassion.

Mindfulness, or present-time non-judgmental attention, comprises the heart of Buddhist meditation practice. This awareness training has been cultivated in Asia for over 2,500 years and, because of its simplicity and power, is now practiced by people from a wide variety of spiritual outlooks.

By cultivating mindfulness, we experience for ourselves the ever-changing flow of the mind/body, including sensations in body, hearing, thoughts, emotions, and consciousness itself. This awareness leads us to a deeper intimacy with life, and a greater ability to accept more fully the pleasure and pain, fear and joy, sadness and happiness that life inevitably brings. As insight deepens, we develop greater peace and equanimity in the face of the three basic characteristics of reality, the truths of impermanence (annica), unsatisfactoriness (dukkha), and not-self (anatta).

Our practice also develops qualities of heart and mind known as the spiritual perfections (paramis), such as generosity, ethical conduct, patience, simplicity, lovingkindness, and equanimity. With greater clarity and freedom in our hearts and minds, and from a place of greater wisdom and compassion, we can share the fruits of our practice with others through our caring and service.

 

Orientations 

Newcomers are welcome to attend any Monday or Wednesday open sitting. We also offer bi-monthly Orientations to provide more detailed information, including an overview of Insight PV history, mission and guiding principles as well as the basics of insight meditation and sitting posture, but you do not need to attend an orientation before attending a Monday or Wednesday open sitting or many of our courses or retreats. The orientation is appropriate for those who are new to Insight PV and those who would like more information about the center and the practice of meditation.