The Manual of Insight

Resources for Mahasi Sayadaw’s book “The Manual of Insight”

About the book

The Manual of Insight is the most comprehensive guide for the practice of Mahasi Vipassana (Insight) meditation.

It is considered to be the magnus opus of Mahasi Sayadaw and it is a must read - or even better a must study - for practicioners interested in Mahasi Vipassana.

Chapter 5 of this book is the most easily understandable and practical how-to for Mahasi Sayadaw’s famous noting technique. The exact same text but with an older English translation, can also be found on this website by pressing these links:

In Chapter 6 Mahasi Sayadaw provides an extended analysis on the stages (map) of the progress of insight.

For further information about this map, please read The Progress of Insight Map.


Alternative translation

Below you may find an older (1984) and freely distributed translation of the same book by U MIN SWE (Min Kyaw Thu), under the name of “The Treatise on Vipassana Insight Meditation”:

Sources for the alternative translation: Dharma Overground, Saraniya Dhamma


Additional material

Book summary/analysis on Reddit (r/streamentry)

Back in 2017, members of r/streamentry organised an online study group for The Manual of Insight. Below you will find the outcome of their discussions, divided per chapter:

Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.


E-book: A r/streamentry summary of Mahasi Sayadaw’s book “The Manual of Insight”

This e-book created by MVMR, is a collection of texts from the above r/streamentry online study group. It contains the summaries of 3 r/streamentry members: u/filpt, u/TetrisMcKenna and u/xugan97.

The purpose of this book is not to be read instead of or before the “The Manual of Insight”, but as an additional resource that will assist the reader to better understand Mahasi Sayadaw’s book.

e-book version: 2.1 - 2019-05-02

This is the link of the discussion about this e-book on r/streamentry.


George Haas Podcast

George Haas has created a 47 episode (in fact 45, as 2 of them deal with a different subject) podcast about (a part of ) the “Manual of Insight” named Deepening Your Practice (DYP).

Note: George Haas (a student of Shinzen Young) does not teach Mahasi Vipassana, instead his approach is based on a mixture of Metta/Vipassana techniques. His podcast deals with both the “Manual of Insight” book analysis and his own meditation method.

At the end of each lecture you may find meditation instructions that are not related with Mahasi Sayadaw’s famous noting technique.