This product is directly related to Vipassana meditation as taught by S.N. Goenka. Learn More.
Vipassana, which means to see things as they
really are, is one of India's most ancient techniques of meditation.
More information about Vipassana as taught by S.N. Goenka is available
The tag Vipassana identifies products that are directly related to this
tradition and differentiates them from other Theravada resources
available on our site. While the main emphasis in Vipassana meditation
as taught by S.N. Goenka is on actual practice, this product may provide
inspiration and guidance to a Vipassana meditator.
We also carry titles from the Theravada tradition, as we feel that by exploring the wider world of the Theravada texts, which include the Buddha’s discourses, commentaries, and scholarly articles and treatises, meditators have an opportunity to deepen their understanding of the Dhamma and thereby enrich their meditation practice. This kind of intellectual exploration also helps a meditator to gain an understanding of the evolution and historical context of their meditation tradition. This understanding in turn deepens their practice and understanding of the Dhamma.x
Vipassana, Psychoanalysis, and the Mind Investigating Itself
Carved by Experience is a close look through psychoanalysis and Buddhism into the mind's most basic conditioning: to crave the pleasant and reject the unpleasant. Drawing upon the rich literature concerning projective mechanisms, Buddhist concepts such as kamma (karma) and conditioned arising, personal stories, and real-life situations, the book follows the manner in which this conditioning takes part in the way we experience reality, perceive it, and react to it. It explores the self-reinforcing habitual patterns formed by this conditioning, and the way they are reproduced across various relationships and situations, thus building our own virtual realities and personal prisons.
But the discussion soon transcends the seemingly fixed boundaries of the individual mind. It reveals their fluid and relative nature, and shows how mental pain spills out of the psyche into the interpersonal sphere, where it affects the minds of others.
While addressing these issues, the book examines the special role of body sensations in the complex fabric of the human mind, and the manner in which Vipassana meditation harnesses this aspect of experience for the sake of investigating suffering and untangling it. All along, the existential paradox that we humans are subject to emerges, namely, that we have no other instrument for studying ourselves but our own shrouded minds; and it is only through those very minds that we can subvert the subjective point of view that obstructs them, unravel the conditionings in which we are captured, and break the vicious circle of producing misery and spreading it.
‘This is a powerful and important book. It reads like a work into which the author has poured her life. Michal Barnea-Astrog combines rigorous scholarship from two different fields and builds a discourse between them. She writes with clarity and lucidity that often becomes poetic. I have spent my lifetime as a psychiatrist and Vipassana meditator, and yet I found myself educated by every page. Barnea-Astrog has written a book that is both a psychotherapeutic textbook, and an intimate testament.’ - Paul R. Fleischman, MD