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Vipassana Meditation: Complete Guide (Updated 2022)

Vipassana Meditation: Complete Guide (Updated 2022)

Breathe in… breathe out… can you feel the sensations at the top of the head? Tip of the nose? With a little Vipassana training, you’ll feel a lot more than just mild sensations in these subtle areas. If the thought of that intrigues you, read on!

In this article we discuss the following:

  • What is Vipassana Meditation?
    • Vipassana Meditation Meaning
    • Vipassana Pronunciation
    • Vipassana Meditation History
    • 10 Day Vipassana Meditation
  • Vipassana Meditation Benefits
  • How to do Vipassana Meditation
    • Learn Vipassana Meditation at Home
  • Types of Vipassana Meditation
  • Vipassana Meditationvs Zen
    • Difference Between Zen and Vipassana Meditation
  • Dzogchen vs Vipassana Meditation
  • Samatha vs Vipassana Meditation
  • Vipassana vs Insight Meditation
  • Best Books on Vipassana Meditation
  • Vipassana Meditation Retreat Review
  • Vipassana Meditation near Me
    • Vipassana Meditation in the USA
      • Vipassana Meditation in California
      • Vipassana Meditation in North Fork
      • Vipassana Meditation in Massachusetts
      • Vipassana Meditation in Texas
        • Vipassana Meditation in Austin
        • Vipassana Meditation in Dallas
        • Vipassana Meditation in Houston
      • Vipassana Meditation in Florida
        • Vipassana Meditation in Miami
      • Vipassana Meditation in NYC
      • Vipassana Meditation in New Mexico
      • Vipassana Meditation in Utah
      • Vipassana Meditation in New Jersey
      • Vipassana Meditation in Illinois
      • Vipassana Meditation in Virginia
      • Vipassana Meditation in Maryland
      • Vipassana Meditation in Colorado
      • Vipassana Meditation in Columbus, Ohio
      • Vipassana Meditation in North Carolina
      • Vipassana Meditation in Delaware
    • Vipassana Meditation in India
    • Vipassana Meditation in Canada
      • Vipassana Meditation in Quebec
      • Vipassana Meditation in Ontario
    • Vipassana Meditation in Australia
    • Vipassana Meditation in Thailand
    • Vipassana Meditation in Europe
      • Vipassana Meditation In Germany
    • Vipassana Meditation in the UK
    • Vipassana Meditation in New Zealand

What is Vipassana Meditation?

To put it simply, the Vipassana meditation technique is what Buddha used to reach enlightenment whilst sitting under the Bodhi Tree in Ancient India. It is a meditation method that involves rigorous body scanning, for the purpose of noticing sensations, both good and bad, and remaining totally equanimous to them (without judgment). 

In practicing the Vipassana method, one begins to notice that when one is able to remain equanimous to these sensations, they tend to dissolve into thin air, proving the illusion that is physicality and thus shifting the mind into a territory of understanding that was not previously accessible. 

In Vipassana Buddhism, the main purpose of meditating this way is to eventually bring up what are known as “sankaras”. These are deep-seeded formations of karma that live in the body, holding you back from enjoying your full potential as a being. One could see them as past traumas, limiting beliefs and mental reactions that have formed lasting shackles. 

In the words of Dr. Aniko Dunn: “Vipassana means seeing them as they are. Vipassana is a type of meditation based on the science of mind and matter. Vipassana teaches us how the mind and body affect each other. All this happens in the depths of our minds.”

Vipassana Meditation Meaning

The word “Vipassana” is a Pali word, which was the language of the Buddha in Ancient India. The Vipassana definition has a literal translation of ‘special’ or ‘seeing’, while it is more often translated to ‘insight’. 

In the Oxford Dictionary, Vipassana is defined as “meditation involving concentration on the body or its sensations, or the insight which this provides.” 

Vipassana Pronunciation

A lot of people struggle to pronounce Vipassana just based on reading it alone; more than this, just about every ‘how to’ video on the Internet has pronounced this word completely wrong to viewers worldwide. If you find a channel teaching the following pronunciation, look elsewhere: vip-asana

The correct way of saying Vipassana is in fact like so: vi-pash-ana. Seasoned mediators tend to say the word more quickly than newbies, so it can also sound a lot like vi-pash-na coming from certain people.

Vipassana Meditation History

To fully comprehend the Vipassana experience, it helps to know at least a bit about the history of this meditation. As mentioned, this was the technique discovered by Buddha during his journey to enlightenment, and it is what lives on in his honor to this day. 

Many believe Buddha to have been the inventor of Vipassana-style meditation, but this is thought to be largely incorrect by historians. Instead, it was Buddha who rediscovered this ancient technique, and breathed new life into it as he deepened his practice over decades. 

The teachings have lived on thanks to respective teachers who have carried the practice across time and space, keeping it from falling away into the past. The current teacher, Mr. S. N. Goenka was born and raised in Myanmar. 

a group of people doing meditation

He settled in India and began teaching Vipassana in 1969, and it is his face and voice that you will interact with were you to commit to a 10 day Vipassana meditation retreat at one of the official centers around the world. 

10 Day Vipassana Meditation

A Vipassana retreat you say? Before we explain why these are necessary, first one needs to understand the immense difference between Vipassana and other mindful meditation. Lily Allen-Duenas from Wild Yoga Tribe elaborates: “There are two main types of mindfulness meditation, Samadhi (also referred to as Samatha) and Vipassana. Samadhi is concentration meditation, in which you are focused on one object such as the breath, a candle flame, or a mantra. The intent is to merge the mind with the object to calm the fluctuations of the mind all while holding the object gently and with neutrality.”

On the contrary, “Vipassana meditation is insight meditation. Observing everything that arises in the mind and body during meditation without judgment is the object of the meditation itself. You observe and do not react, criticize, judge, or get involved in the thinking itself. It is passive witnessing. The purpose of Vipassana is to understand our mental habits and mental formations to better understand your relationship with yourself and with your mind,” says Lily. 

Based on this understanding, it should be clear that Vipassana is not the sort of practice that you can pick up by watching a couple of YouTube videos on your off day. Most Vipassana meditators agree that it takes a full length, 10 day Vipassana silent retreat to properly integrate into the method, and thus be able to take it home into everyday life and practice. 

These retreats are run by an organization called Dhamma Vipassana. The objective was to create mediation centers all around the world, where people could come from far and wide to learn this ancient practice in a safe, remote container in which they do not have to worry about the outside world for 10 days or more. 

What to Expect

With centers in almost every country worldwide, the Dhamma foundation invites anyone, from anywhere, to apply to attend a 10 day meditation retreat. For first time students, the 10 day duration is mandatory, and once you have completed this cycle you are considered an “old student”. This means that you are now eligible for shorter or longer retreats. You could come for 3 days over a weekend, or you can apply for the long stays (up to 70 days in silence). 

Some things to note about these retreats:

  • They are completely free to attend
  • All meals and accommodation are included 
  • They typically permit 40 men and 40 women per retreat, give or take
  • You will remain in silence for the duration
  • You will be taught the Vipassana method over the course of 10 days

meditation schedule

Upon arrival at a retreat, you’ll be quickly informed of the very structured Vipassana schedule that you’ll be expected to adhere to over the 10 day period. The day starts at 4am, where all meditators are woken by a gong that signals it is time to flock to the meditation hall. The following is how a Vipassana meditation day is structured. 

Vipassana Meditation Benefits

The benefits of Vipassana meditation are best shared by those who have actually been through the 10 day process, and applied the teachings into their daily practice thereafter. We spoke to a number of past students who gave their personal accounts.

Lily, who we heard from earlier, told us of how she has attended five different Vipassana meditation retreats around the world. “My first Vipassana was in northern Thailand, and my first official SN Goenka Vipassana was at Dhamma Anuradha in Sri Lanka. I practice both Vipassana and samadhi meditation. I feel as if they go hand in hand to help me better tame and train the wildness of my mind, while witnessing the habits to better understand who I am and how my mind works. The two wings of compassionate taming and understanding, set me free.”

Todd Bissel, from Ride FAQs, is of the opinion that Vipassana has many benefits especially when it comes to meditation. “It takes a lot of effort to meditate for 10 1/2 hours a day. You acquire confidence as you master each new level of the method.”

He points at how, during meditation, we create objectives for ourselves all the time, especially during the hour of determination (when you can't move your legs, unclasp your hands, or open your eyes for an hour), and by achieving them, one’s confidence grows. “When you get home after meditating for so long, meditating for half an hour to an hour should be easy work. When you are not flexible, meditating for more than an hour can be unpleasant. You choose to ignore and overcome your discomfort.”

It’s this very discomfort that has brought Vipassana critique to the table. During Vipassana, the meditator is encouraged to sit for one hour minimum without moving due to discomfort. The objective is to allow the discomfort to be there, without feeling like anything needs to change. This can be easy for some, and incredibly challenging for others, especially individuals with physical conditions that make sitting in one position relatively impossible. 

How to do Vipassana Meditation

person doing yoga

One may think that a guided Vipassana meditation would be easy enough to do at home, using the videos and media recordings from the program itself. While this is absolutely doable for some, it will not be a viable option for many, especially with no prior knowledge or understanding of the practice. 

Because Vipassana is so centered around identifying and observing sensations in every inch of the body, it is very difficult to describe exactly how to do it to unknowing individuals. For context, the first 3 days at a 10 day retreat are spent meditating on the sensation of breath between the nostril and the upper lip — 10 and a half hours a day, focusing on this only. 

So you can see the sensitivity that is developed over the course of a Vipassana retreat, but meditators wanting to do this practice at home could benefit greatly from spending a week or two practicing body-scanning meditations only, and then working their way into the Vipassana practice using the sensitivity acquired in the scanning days. 

Learn Vipassana Meditation at Home

If you’re set on learning Vipassana meditation at home, then the first thing you need to do is get yourself familiar with Goenka Vipassana meditation YouTube. Search for the live recordings of Goenka speaking on this practice, and start watching the footage in order. Goenka is the existing worldwide Vipassana teacher, so everything you need to know is housed in the information relayed by this man. 

There are some Vipassana courses that you can sign up for, in which you’ll be taught the method without having to commit to the 10 day silent retreat. This way, you’ll soon be practicing daily Vipassana meditation without having necessarily learned from Goenka himself. 

Types of Vipassana Meditation

In seeking how to practice Vipassana, people often come across some confusion around the notion of the ‘different types of Vipassana’. Let it be known, there are no different types of Vipassana meditation — Vipassana is Vipassana is Vipassana. 

It is a standardized, straightforward practice that cannot be varied or changed to suit different styles; you either practice Vipassana or you don’t. Steer clear of any teacher that is claiming to have a different “type” of Vipassana practice on offer. 

On that note, steer clear of anyone who is encouraging the mixing of one meditation practice with Vipassana. Dr. Dunn explains that sometimes when people try to mix the Vipassana meditation technique with some other meditation techniques, they often go through depersonalization issues, hallucination, and sometimes need psychiatric treatment.

Vipassana Meditation vs Zen

It’s important to note that Vipassana is not the sole form of meditation with the Buddhism infrastructure. Zen meditation, also known as Zazen, is another practice stemming from Buddhist psychology. 

Zen and Vipassana could not be more different, to put it quite simply. Why? Well, for one, in Zen meditation the eyes are kept semi open for the duration of the practice. The goal during Zen is to think about nothing, while in Vipassana, thoughts are very active and in constant focus toward sensations and equanimity. 

Some confuse Zen as a Vipassana style of meditation, but this isn’t a good comparison to draw. 

Difference Between Zen and Vipassana Meditation

The core difference between Zen and Vipassana meditation would probably lie in the scheduling of the practice. With Vipassana, meditations are encouraged to practice for an hour every morning, and every evening. The rest of the day is left to unfold organically, and the benefits of the practice are allowed to flow in as and when they need to — this is not an active process. 

With Zen meditation, the meditator is encouraged to practice just once a day, for a period of between 30 to 50 minutes. Focus is on the breath, and not the rest of the body like in Vipassana. As mentioned, eyes should ideally remain slightly open, but those who find this to be a distraction (or that it pulls focus) are permitted to close them, or even open them fully if this is more comfortable. 

person sitting on the rocks

Dzogchen vs Vipassana Meditation

Dzogchen is a practice that has existed for Buddhist yogis for over 1200 years. It utilizes mediative methods combined with yogic exercises that are intense to help the meditator fully free themselves from illusions of the self, and thus release the shackles of suffering in the physical realm. 

In many ways, Dzogchen and Vipassana are similar in their final destination: liberation from suffering using only the mind and its natural peace. Dzogchen, however, is considered a tantric path based upon Vajrayana practices, through which the technique is taught. 

Unlike Vipassana, which relies on unending and concrete mindfulness, Dzogchen is more focused around broad awareness that is independent of one specific meditation technique. 

Samatha vs Vipassana Meditation

Directly translated, Samatha means “tranquility of mind” or “mind calmness”, and is a Buddhist term. This type of meditation is all about calmness achieved through mindful breathing. Essentially, this means that you breath thoughtfully, through the whole body. 

There are many similarities to Samatha and Vipassana meditation, as they both lead to a strong sense of equanimity. They are easily interlinked practices, and there is little to no risk involved with using them simultaneously as you navigate daily life. 

Vipassana vs Insight Meditation

Socrates is famous for having said “To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.” It is upon this very line that what we know to be Vipassana meditation happens to be based… and so too, insight meditation. 

Vipassana is a form of insight meditation, so these two phrases are pretty interchangeable. The goal of these types of meditation is to give the individual insight into the truest nature of their experiences. Self-observation and non-judgement are key in this form of meditation. 

Co-Founder of Smartworths, Sam Illingworth, highlights that Vipassana, if practiced correctly, leads to greater self-understanding and purification of the mind. “Vipassana has a strong effect on both mind and body, and any weaknesses you have in either area will come to the forefront, which can be dealt with with the help of experts. I had a bad divorce three years back which I successfully overcame due to Vipassana.”

Best Books on Vipassana Meditation

If you’re committing to taking Vipassana step by step, and embarking on the journey with long term success in mind, then it can be helpful to read some books on the history and technique. 

The Art of Living: Vipassana Meditation is a book by William Hart in which a full length study is done on the teachings of S. N. Goenka, under both his guidance and approval. Hearing it from the leading teacher himself is a fantastic place to start. 

Alternatively, you can get your hands on an English translation of a book by Goenka himself, called Meditate Now. The book is not focused solely on Vipassana per se, but it does explore an array of Buddhist teachings through short stories, essays and interviews. We feel this book is essential at laying a foundation upon which a successful Vipassana practice can be built. 

Vipassana Meditation Retreat Review

Writer and photographer, Natalie Wra, recently took the plunge and applied for a 10 day Vipassana retreat at the Dhamma Pataka center near Cape Town, South Africa. The experience was interesting, to say the least, and thanks to her we’ve been given a first hand review Vipassana meditation retreat. 

At the Dhamma center in South Africa, 40 men and 40 women are permitted for each 10 day period. All meditators are given their own individual living quarters which, according to Natalie, were very comfortable. “Living quarters are divided into blocks, which are essentially just ten rooms string together. Everyone gets their own room with an ensuite bathroom, and in the room there is a bed, side table, closet/shelving unit, a shower, toilet and basin.”

set of identical houses

Meditators are to bring along any comforts they will need for the 10 day stay, including all linen, cushions and towels. “I wish I had been told that there are electrical outlets in each room, and that we would not have access to a kettle in the evenings. If I go back I’ll definitely take a kettle along to keep in my room for a cup of tea before bed!”

Aside from all 80 participants coming down with either food poisoning or a gnarly stomach bug (at the same time), Natalie’s Vipassana meditation review remains positive. “Everyone was suffering in silence, thinking they were the only ones needing to run to the bathroom every hour. It made for one memorable experience indeed, but it did not detract much from the teachings. In fact, it added a sort of physical-purge element to the retreat; actively letting go of whatever needed to be released.”

Diarrhea and constipation are actually considered to be some of Vipassana negative effects, and the teachings owe these bodily responses to whatever the individual may be dealing with during the time of practice. If you’re deepening your meditation, and actually working to release those sankaras, then a physical expulsion from the body is not all that far fetched. On the contrary, if you are not allowing the meditation to do what it needs to, and you’re holding onto that which no longer serves you, constipation can be a side effect. 

“With regards to the food and general experience, there is little to fault at Dhamma Pataka in South Africa. Situated on the outskirts of the Karoo National Botanical Gardens and surrounded by mountains, the terrain is glorious. The way the light hits the surroundings as you move through your day is worth the visit alone. You can also hear lions roaring through the sunset, and in early mornings (which makes those 4am call times very much worth it),” says Natalie. 

“The food is generous and tasty; you can tell there is great love and effort that goes into each meal. Breakfast is simple (oats, toast, fruit etc), and lunch is a hearty curry-type dish, accompanied by a starch, salad and desert. Because you’re sitting in meditation for over 10 hours a day, it can make it difficult to digest food quickly. I recommend taking a yoga mat with you to keep in your room, and to do regular stretching during breaks, as well as walks around the grounds, just to keep your gut moving,” she adds.

Vipassana Meditation Near Me

The best thing about this particular practice is that there is pretty much a Vipassana meditation center near everyone, no matter where on Planet Earth they may find themselves. You’ll likely require little more than a domestic flight to get to your nearest center. 

Some things to note: While there is an abundance of Vipassana locations around the world, many of them have pretty lengthy wait lists. You can’t just show up to a Dhamma Center and say you’d like to join in, rather one needs to apply on the organization website and wait to be approved. The application process is roughly as follows:

  1. Head to the official representative website, select the 10 day retreat that you are available to attend, and click ‘apply’.
  2. Fill in your personal information, and create a Dhamma login account. 
  3. Fill out the application form: This involves being honest about some personal information, including what medications you’re currently on, your mental health history, and what kinds of spiritual practice you’ve been involved in in the past. 
  4. Submit your application and await feedback (which is sent via email). 

Vipassana Meditation in the USA

The USA has a myriad of Vipassana centers to choose from, with a total of 15 official centers (where retreats take place) and 5 non-official centers (where one can seek support or information). 

All Vipassana centers have unique names, which makes it easy to identify the different locations and their respective countries/cities. The retreat centers typically all start with the word ‘Dhamma’, followed by another Pali word. ‘Dhamma’ means to uphold, thus these centers literally hold up the teachings and practices so that the world may reap their benefits. 

Vipassana Meditation in California

Of all states in the USA, California holds the most Vipassana Centers of them all. They are: Dhamma Santosa, Dhamma Manda, Dhamma Mahavana and Dhamma Vaddhana.

California being the dreamscape that it is, makes for the picture perfect backdrop for each of these centers, offering a nature-rich escape to all who come through the doors. 

Vipassana Meditation in North Fork

Dhamma Mahavana

The meditation center situated in North Fork, California is that of Dhamma Mahavana, which we mentioned above. Situated across over 109 acres of forested property in the Sierra Nevada foothills, this terrain is made up of pine groves, cedar trees and oak forests. 

Vipassana Meditation in Massachusetts

Dhamma Dhara

Located in the charming village of Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts, Dhamma Dhara was actually the first Vipassana center in North America. It opened its doors in 1982, and features a comfortable facility across eight hectares of meadowland. 

The meditation hall fits an astounding 200 people at once, which is a lot bigger than many centers around the world. 

Vipassana Meditation in Texas

Texans have two Vipassana centers to choose from, and they are Dhamma Siri and Dhamma Sukha. The first is situated in Kaufman, while the latter calls New Ulm home. 

Both are generous in capacity, and have outstanding facilities; Dhamma Sukha is one of the newest Vipassana centers on the planet, so one can expect to enjoy top notch and well thought out finishing touches. 

Vipassana Meditation in Austin

At this time, there is no definitive meditation center in Austin itself. Those who would like to attend a retreat nearby, would need to head to the Dhamma Sukha center mentioned above, which is designed to cater to the San Antonio, Austin, and Houston areas. 

Vipassana Meditation in Dallas

Since Dhamma Siri (also mentioned above) is located just 45 minutes from downtown Dallas, this would be the nearest meditation center for the locals. They currently hold 25 courses annually, and serve over 2500 students per year. 

Vipassana Meditation in Houston

As seen above, Dhamma Sukha would be the best place for Houston-based meditators to head to when looking for a 10 day Vipassana retreat. The name Dhamma Siri translates to ‘'Prosperity of Dhamma”. 

Vipassana Meditation in Florida

Dhamma Patapa Center

There aren’t any centers in Florida at this time, however locals need only head directly south, to the border of Georgia, where they will find the Dhamma Patapa Center ready and waiting. This translation means ‘the majesty of dhamma’. 

Vipassana Meditation in Miami

Likewise, Miami residents can make the short journey to Georgia where Dhamma Patapa awaits. The center is situated in Wayne County, which is just 90 miles north of Jacksonville, Florida. 

Vipassana Meditation in NYC

New York doesn’t have a retreat center of its own, but it does have a Vipassana information center called the NYVA, or New York Vipassana Association. This is a great resource center for anyone who is interested in learning the practice, and they hold regular talks and community gatherings where questions can be asked freely. 

The nearest full-scale meditation center to New York would be Dhamma Dhara in Massachusetts.  

Vipassana Meditation in New Mexico

New Mexico also doesn’t have a full-scale center on offer at this time, however just one state north is Dhamma Sela, situated in Elbert, Colorado. Known as the ‘rock of dhamma’, this center is surrounded by lush pine forests and natural grasslands. 

Vipassana Meditation in Utah

Without a meditation center of its own, local Utah residents tend to flock north when they want to enjoy Vipassana retreats. Their nearest center sits in Idaho, and is called Dhamma Pasava. It’s situated just 2 minutes from the resort town known as Lava Hot Springs, and we highly recommend a stay in the village either before or after your retreat. 

Vipassana Meditation in New Jersey

Right on the border where New Jersey turns to Delaware is where you’ll find Dhamma Pubbananda. It’s a more intimate retreat center, and caters to just 30 meditators per retreat. 

The organization purchased this property in 2013, and renovated it for an entire year to be ready to welcome the first students in 2014. 

Vipassana Meditation in Illinois

Dhamma Pakasa is the meditation center that Illinois residents get to enjoy on home soil. The emergence of this center back in 2004 sparked the spread of Vipassana throughout Chicago and surrounding areas, with students flocking to the center year round and forming communities amongst themselves. 

Vipassana Meditation in Virginia

Virginia is without its own center at this time, so the nearest location would be Dhamma Pubananda over in Delaware. It’s not the shortest of journeys getting to the center, but it is well worth the adventure. 

Something to note about Vipassana retreats is that they tend to put all students in contact before the course, so that people can co-ordinate road trip buddies and airport pickups. 

Vipassana Meditation in Maryland

Since Maryland and Delaware are attached by the hip, it makes sense that locals in Maryland make use of the Delaware center that we discussed earlier. Since this is a relatively small center and it caters to so many surrounding states, it is good to apply well in advance if this is where you want to practice.

Vipassana Meditation in Colorado

Dhamma Sela

We looked at Dhamma Sela earlier; the pride and joy of Colorado’s natural terrain. You’ll find the center approximately 60 miles southeast of Denver and approximately 35 miles northeast of Colorado Springs. 

Vipassana Meditation in Columbus, Ohio

Ohio Vipassana Association

This is not a full-length retreat center, but it is a very welcoming and valuable addition to the Vipassana climate in Ohio. Situated in Columbus, this is a valuable escape for anyone looking to better familiarize themselves with the Buddhist and Vipassana psychologies. 

Vipassana Meditation in North Carolina

If you’re looking for a retreat center near North Carolina, you can’t go wrong by simply heading south and basking in all that Georgia’s Dhamma Patapa has to offer. We probably don’t need to tell you what one can expect from Georgia’s glorious natural greenscapes, so imagine yourself spending 10 days immersed in it whilst in complete peace and silence…

Vipassana Meditation in Delaware 

Dhamma Pubbananda

We discussed this urban center earlier; that of Dhamma Pubbananda. This center calls Delaware home, and people come from all surrounding states to meditate here and learn the magic of Vipassana. 

Vipassana Meditation in India

Given that this was the home of Buddha himself, it comes as little surprise that India has 99 full-scale centers, and 14 non-centers, to offer to the world. A lot of people come to India from different continents just to learn this technique on the “homeland” itself. 

The most popular retreat centers are those situated in Uttar Pradesh, particularly Kushinagar as this is where Buddha eventually died. 

Vipassana Meditation in Canada

Canada has five impressive Vipassana centers to offer, as well as one non-center. This is great news for Canadians, as they no longer have to travel internationally to enjoy the benefits of learning Vipassana. Canada also has some of the most upscale facilities out of all centers around the world. 

Vipassana Meditation in Quebec

Dhamma Suttama in Quebec

Dhamma Suttama

Quebec residents enjoy a full scale meditation center right in their backyard. Dhamma Suttama is situated in the charming area of Montebello, halfway between Montréal and Ottawa/Gatineau. 

The tranquil property can accommodate up to 100 students per course, having opened their doors back in 2011. 

Vipassana Meditation in Ontario

At present, there is no full-scale retreat center in Ontario, so residents need to travel east or west to the center on offer in other parts of the country. The nearest Vipassana center to Ontario is the one mentioned above, in Montebello. 

Vipassana Meditation in Australia

Australia is no stranger to Vipassana either. The country offers eight full-scale centers, and one non-center (situated in Darwin). At this time, there are no centers in either Melbourne or Sydney, so locals need to seek out whichever of the eight facilities may be nearest to them, and apply there. 

Vipassana Meditation in Thailand

Thailand is a wonderful place to plan a 10 day meditation retreat. It’s affordable to travel to, its beauty is unmatched, and the centers have wonderful courses on offer. There are a total of 9 full-scale centers scattered across Thailand for you to choose from. 

Vipassana Meditation in Europe

Europe has 18 retreat centers on offer, and a whopping 39 non-centers where mediators can seek community and support. The ratio is as follows: Eastern Europe with two full centers, and 12 non-centers, Northern Europe with five full centers and 9 non-centers, Southern Europe with three full centers and 9 non-centers, and finally Western Europe with eight full centers and 9 non-centers. 

Vipassana Meditation in Germany

Dhamma Dvara

Dhamma Dvara is the full-scale Vipassana meditation center in Germany, and it’s situated in the district of Triebel. The location is extremely remote, and can cater to 150 meditators with two 10-day retreats being held per month. 

Vipassana Meditation in the UK

There are 4 full-scale Vipassana centers in the UK, and 2 non-centers. None of them are close to the main cities, and rather lie in remote areas where there is a sense of being “off the grid”. 

Since there aren’t many full-sized centers in Northern Europe, this is where a lot of EU residents come when they want to learn how to meditate in this particular technique. 

Vipassana Meditation in New Zealand

There is only one Vipassana center in all of New Zealand, but that’s all we really need. It is in the Makarau valley, north of Kaukapakapa, just an hour’s drive from Auckland. 

The grassy, green and gorgeous land can accommodate 100 students at a time. This is a bird-watchers paradise, and anyone who has done a 10 day retreat before will tell you that by the time the sun sets on day two, everyone is a birdwatcher. 

Did You Enjoy This Article?

Thank you for reading! If you enjoyed this article, you might also like the following articles: Guided Meditation with a Tibetan Singing BowlSound Bowl Meditation and Healing: Recent Studies, and Singing Bowl Meditation.

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