Sayagyi U Ba Khin
"The world is now facing serious problems threatening mankind. It is just the right time for everyone to take to Vipassana meditation and learn how to find a deep pool of quiet in the midst of all that is happening today.”
- Sayagyi U Ba Khin.
Sayagyi U Ba Khin was born in Rangoon on the 6th of March 1899. Though he had been a brilliant pupil throughout the elementary and secondary education and passed the university entry exams he did not go to university. His parents were not well off, and he felt that he had to earn an income as soon as possible to support them.
He entered the British administration and through diligent work and study became one of the highest local civil servants. When Burma gained independence he was named the first Accountant General of Burma.
Sayagyi U Ba Khin started to practise meditation under Saya Thet, a disciple of the famous Ledi Sayadaw and one of the first lay meditation teachers in Burma. Sayagyi U Ba Khin was also urged by the Webu Sayadaw who was believed to have reached arahatship to pass on the Buddha’s teachings as he knew and understood them.
Sayagyi U Ba Khin’s aspiration was to be able to give lay people, who lead busy and often unsettled lives, a tool to understand the teachings of the Buddha in practice. He knew that a working man would not be able to devote long periods in the forest to meditation. Therefore he designed the Ten Day Course and a technique to enable the diligent student to follow in the footsteps of the Buddha up to the understanding of the truth and Nibbana.
Sayagyi U Ba Khin showed through his life that meditation can be very successfully integrated into and greatly benefit lay life. The power of mind he gained through his practice allowed him to run up to four major government departments simultaneously at the same time as teaching meditation courses. Sayagyi U Ba Khin passed away on the 19th of January 1971.
The Essence of the Buddha's Teachings in Meditative Practice
Mother Sayamagyi Daw Mya Thwin was born in Moulmein on the 12th of March 1925. Her Mother died soon after her birth and she was brought up by her maternal grandparents. Through her husband, the late Sayagyi U Chit Tin, she came into contact with Sayagyi U Ba Khin in 1953 and became his main disciple. Sayamagyi was always present when Sayagyi U Ba Khin was teaching and assisted him with all his disciples, both Burmese and foreign.
After Sayagyi U Ba Khin’s demise Sayamagyi worked at the IMC in Rangoon until she and Sayagyi U Chit Tin left Burma in 1978 to teach in the west. It had always been Sayagyi U Ba Khin’s deepest wish to teach meditation to the people of the west, but circumstances beyond his control prevented him from leaving his country. Sayamagyi and Sayagyi U Chit Tin renounced their life in Burma in order to fulfil this wish of their teacher. Travelling and teaching all over the world for 30 years they established five meditation centres with pagodas for meditation and also groups and association in various countries.
After Sayagyi U Chit Tin passed away in 2002, Mother Sayamagyi continued to travel and teach on her own until 2009. After her last course abroad in Switzerland at the age of 84 years, she remained at the IMC UK teaching until she passed away on January 28th 2017.
Mr Roger Bischoff is residing at the IMC UK. He is teaching there and in the other centres and internationally.
Regional Teachers see Contacts