Saturday, April 16, 2016

Sayādawgyi U Paṇḍita, Passed Away at 94

Sayādawgyi U Paṇḍita
(July 29, 1921 — April 16, 2016)

by Lion's Roar Staff
April 16, 2016

The modern Vipassan
ā meditation teacher Sayādawgyi U Paṇḍita has passed away, at the age of 94.

A highly influential Theravada teacher, U
Paṇḍita was, at the time of his death, the abbot of Paṇḍitārāma Meditation Center in Yangon, Myanmar, which he founded in 1991. He had himself been trained by the famed Mahāsi Sayādaw, and took over the Mahāsi Meditation Center after Mahāsi’s death in 1982.

U Paṇḍita’s influence in the West was strong with students and teachers alike, due in part to his time teaching at Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Barre, Massachusetts in 1984. (Read IMS teacher Sharon Salzberg’s account of training with U Pandita.) The talks he gave there were later collected in the book In This Very Life: Liberation Teachings of the Buddha. He also authored several other writings, including the book The State of Mind Called Beautiful.

Founding IMS teacher Joseph Goldstein told
So many of us here are saddened to hear
of Sayādaw U Paṇḍita’s passing.
He was such a powerful influence in all of our lives,
urging us on to realize our highest aspirations.
His great service to the Dhamma is inestimable.
It feels like the passing of an era.

 (the above photos from Lilian Wong & Simon Tan)