well, i can’t accept this . in my point of view all four satipatthanas are essential for awakening. each satipatthana directs the yogi to a different aspect of realization. mindfulness of the body is to be practiced intensively and frequently but it does not mean that the rest of the satipatthanas are to be abandoned. if the rest of the satipatthanas are abandoned one will not be able to master the mind. vedana ( feelings ) is an important link in the chain of dependent origination. if the contemplation of feelings are abandoned you’re ignoring that feelings are playing a major role in the dependent origination. in order to attain enlightenment one should deconstruct the dependent origination , and once the craving towards feelings are destroyed the whole chain of dependent origination is destroyed.
Ñāṇaponika 1983: 5 points out that “Contemplation of Feeling can unfold its full strength as an efficient tool for breaking the chain of suffering at its weakest link.”
Analayo. Perspectives on Satipatthana (Kindle Locations 3626-3627). Windhorse Publications. Kindle Edition.
What causes the arising of dukkha are thus ignorant reactions (links 1 and 2), which manifest when feeling leads to craving, etc. (links 8, 9, and 10). This clearly puts a spotlight on feeling. It is at this juncture that ignorance needs to be deconditioned, so that reactions by way of craving can be avoided. In other words, feeling is the link where the presence of mindfulness can have a decisive effect on the dependent arising of dukkha. Expressed in practical terms, being mindful of feelings enables one to become aware of the conditioned genesis of dukkha right at its inception.In this way, contemplation of feelings can become the decisive condition that ensures that the ever-changing process of causes and conditions that make up experience eventually leads to the experience of the unconditioned. In the case of an arahant, volitional formations that are rooted in ignorance have been forever eradicated and feeling can no longer lead to craving.
Analayo. Perspectives on Satipatthana (Kindle Locations 3246-3248). Windhorse Publications. Kindle Edition.
from MN 10 :
“Monastics, this is the path where all things come together as one, to purify sentient beings, to make an end of pain and sadness, to get past sorrow and lamentation, to reach the way, to witness Nibbāna; that is, the four kinds of mindfulness meditation
Here,What four? a monastic meditates by observing an aspect of the body, keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world. They meditate by observing an aspect of feelings, keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world. They meditate by observing an aspect of the mind, keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world. They meditate by observing an aspect of principles, keen, aware, and mindful, rid of desire and aversion for the world
Monastics, anyone who develops the four kinds of mindfulness meditation in this way for seven years may expect one of two results: final enlightenment in this very life, or if there is anything left over, non-return.
Throughout the satipatthana sutta and its parallels no satipatthana is mentioned individually. if one satipatthana was sufficient for awakening, buddha would have preached the contemplation of the body,feelings,mind and dhammas separately. wherever the satipatthanas are mentioned in the nikaya/agama ( anuruddha samyutta, satipatthana samyutta etc. ) they are mentioned in the four fold manner.
so my point is that all four satipatthanas are essential, but one could develop a particular type of satipatthana intensively than the rest of the satipatthanas but non of them to be ignored or abandoned.
this is my current opinion on this and you have the freedom of rejection.
with metta .