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Rays of sunlight shining through the gate of a Vipassana Meditation Center.
The Buddha taught sīla, samādhi, paññā—morality, concentration, insight. Vipassana Teacher S.N. Goenka often referred to the Buddha as a ‘super scientist’, as he discovered the law of nature (Dhamma) that all things are impermanent.
Both mind (nāma) and matter (rūpa) arise because of conditions (dependent origination) and perish immediately, and this is happening every moment of our lives. The Buddha taught that the cause of all suffering is craving. Whatever is impermanent is dukkha (suffering) as craving for impermanent things is always unsatisfactory.
As Vipassana meditators we observe the transitory, impermanent nature of reality within the framework of the body. Craving arises on the level of bodily sensations and we can only come out of craving by learning to observe the nāma-rūpa phenomena without attachment.
The Buddha became fully enlightened, meaning that he understood all; he saw past, present and future, and appreciated all laws of nature. To reach the final goal of liberation, we only have to concern ourselves with how to end suffering—all other knowledge is secondary. Being educated in any of the physical, biological or psychological sciences of course is useful in daily life, but will not result in enlightenment.
For us, paṭipatti (practice) stays the main focus while pariyatti (theory) supports our experiential understanding and can inspire us to keep walking on the path. When progressing in Dhamma, most meditators find their gratitude for the Buddha and the Sangha growing. And with that they often become increasingly interested in the life of the Buddha and the Sangha, as well as the historical period subsequent to the Buddha'a passing during which Dhamma continued to flower in India for a few more centuries.​

History Section

The subcategory history in the Buddha and his Teaching section on our website is a great gateway to explore a variety of works on Buddhism and the Buddha and his teachings, several with a historical or social-cultural approach.
Pali scholar T.W. Rhys Davids portrays ancient India during the period of Buddhist ascendancy from a scientific-historical point of view. In sixteen chapters the work presents a detailed account of the socio-economic, geo-political, and ethical-religious conditions. It describes the history of the kings, clans and nations that played a role in the growth and spread of Buddhism. With fifty-six illustrations and maps, this classic work, first published in 1903, is as illuminating today as it was revolutionary when it was first published. This is a good read, for the general reader as well as the scholar. Available in hardcover and softcover.
Trevor Ling describes the India into which the Buddha was born, recounts what is known of his life and the development of his teaching, and then follows the course of Buddhism through succeeding centuries in India and Sri Lanka. Available in print and eBook.
This work is regarded as one of the best historical biographies of the Buddha. It explores the social, religious and political conditions that prevailed in the Buddha's time and places his teachings and influence in a thoroughly researched historical context. A wait list currently exist for this title; we expect to have it back in stock soon.
The ancient city of Kosambi in northeast India witnessed important events during the lifetime of the Buddha. Paul Pothecary has brought together the most important events that occurred in and around Kosambi to create a lively, imaginative and accessible narrative that interweaves historical figures, events and important aspects of the Buddha's teachings with fascinating accounts of life in northeast India about 2600 years ago.
Browse History Section

Staff Pick with 20% Discount

Facets of Buddhism
Facets of Buddhism is a collection of essays by Venerable Hammalawa Saddhatissa. Because of the author's sympathy with European ways of thinking, these essays are particularly helpful to those not brought up in a Buddhist culture and tradition. The essays cover a range of topics such as ethics, metaphysics, kamma, rebirth, meditation, history and nibbāna. Some essays are of an introductory nature; other are more advanced.
Excerpt from Facets of Buddhism:
screen print of excerpt taken from Facets of Buddhism
The 20% discount will be in place for 14 days...
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Resources in Spanish - Recursos en español
We have recently added a couple of free resources in Spanish to our website.
PDF: A Meditator's Handbook (in Spanish) is now available in PDF format, and can be downloaded for free. We also offer this title in paperback.  

VIDEO: Spanish subtitles have been added to the wonderful talk by Patrick Given-Wilson on Sayagyi U Ba Khin, the teacher of S.N. Goenka.
Recientemente hemos agregado en nuestra página web material gratuito en español.

PDF: Ahora tenemos Un manual del meditador en PDF que puede bajar gratuitamente. También lo tenemos impreso en cuaderno.
VIDEO: Se han agregado subtítulos en español a la maravillosa charla de Patrick Given-Wilson sobre Sayagyi U Ba Khin, el maestro de S.N. Goenka.
Subtitles in other languages are also to be released in the future—stay tuned!

Upcoming Pāli Workshops

Intermediate (Calif., USA):  October 1 - 5 (Sean Salkin)
Introductory (Poland):  November 19 - December 1 (Klaus Nothnagel)
Introductory (Israel):  February 19 - 24, 2020 (Klaus Nothnagel)
Learn More and Apply


Pariyatti organizes different pilgrimages for Vipassana meditators (as taught by S.N. Goenka). The itinerary of Along the Path enables the pilgrims to visit and meditate at the four great places related to the Buddha's life, as well as four other inspiring and important locations in India & Nepal; The Golden Path travels to the main sites associated with the chain of teachers in the tradition of Vipassana as taught by S.N. Goenka in Burma (Myanmar).
ABOVE: a Theravada nun sits in the garden facing the Bodhi tree and the Maha Bodhi temple in Bodhgaya for her meditation and chanting practice. It was in Bodhgaya where the Buddha reached enlightenment.
BELOW: During the Along the Path pilgrimage Pariyatti pilgrims will get the chance to participate in a Sangha dana at the Burmese Vihar in Bodhgaya (left) and will stay for a few nights at the Vietnamese Vihar in Vaishali (right).
After his enlightenment the Buddha regularly visited Vaishali. He established the Bhikkhuni Sangha (for nuns) there, initiating his maternal aunt into the order. In Vaishali he also announced his approaching of Mahāparinibbāna (the final departure from the world) three months in advance.
The nuns running the guesthouse in Vaishali are practitioners of Vipassana as taught by Goenkaji. Adjacent to the guesthouse the nuns have a small meditation center, reserved for organizing Vipassana courses in our tradition.
Vihara silhouettes
Upcoming Pilgrimages
Along the Path - (North India & Nepal):
Den Pfad entlang - Indien & Nepal
朝圣路上 – 印度、尼泊尔
2020年1月20日至2月10日/ January 20 – February 10, 2020 (Chinese)
Changed dates - in alignment with the holidays during Chinese New Year
更改日期 - 与农历新年期间的假期保持一致
February 29 - March 21, 2020 (English)
The Golden Path - (Burma):
金色之旅 –缅甸朝圣
December 17, 2019 - January 3, 2020 (English/Chinese)
2019年12月17 - 2020年01月03 (中英文双语)
Application deadline October 10/申请截止日期10月10日
Learn More and Apply

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Pariyatti is a charitable, non-profit, educational support system for the Dhamma community. Pariyatti exists because of funds donated by supporters.

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