Dhamma Letter No. 50

Understanding Samatha and Vipassana (II)

The etymology of the word ‘vipassana’ is a compound word of ‘vi’ and ‘passanā’.

The prefix 'vi' has the meaning of separation, distinction, difference, and dispersion.

'Passanā' has the meanings of gaze, observation, contemplation, and continuous awareness.

If we define etymological analysis through understanding, it can be said that “vipassana is the separation and continuous penetration of everything related to perceptual phenomena”.

In this definition, vipassana is called 'right intuition', 'insight', 'introspection', etc. Recently, it has been established as a practice method of early Buddhism, and now in the West, vipassanā meditation is translated and used as 'insight meditation' or 'mindfulness meditation'.

Various concepts recently revealed in the domestic translation process, such as 'carving', 'taking', 'mindfulness', 'awareness',  and 'seeing through', refer to 'Sati' used in the core method of vipassanā practice

Additionally, it is used as 'awakening', 'concentrating attention', and 'keeping the mind'.

In this study, the original sound ‘sati’ will be used as it is, or it will be used as ‘mindfulness’ depending on the context.

In English, it is translated as ‘mindfulness’, ‘bare attention’, ‘noting’, ‘awareness’, etc.

To be continued…

With Metta,

Ayyā Kosallā & Mahāpajāpatī Bhikkhunī Sangha
Edited by Euna Bonovich 


If you have any questions related to dhamma & meditation, please feel free to ask. You can reach Ayya Kosalla directly at Bhikkhuni.Kosalla@gmail.com . 

법에 대한 질문이 있으신 분은 위의 이메일 주소로 질문을 남겨주세요.

이번 주부터 연재되는 위빠사나명상의 마음관찰에 대한 논문을 한글 원본으로 읽고 싶으신 분은 클릭해서 다운로드 받을 수 있습니다. (네이버에 PDF 첨부)

The Korean Dhamma Letter is here 담마레터.


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Buddha Sāsanaṁ Ciraṁ Tiṭṭhatu! 
May the Buddha’s teachings last a long time!

​Bhavatu Sabba Sotiṁ ca Maṅgalaṁ ca!!  
May everyone be led on the path of peace and blessing!!

Sādhu Sādhu Sādhu !