Vipassana

As Nino was leaving I took the opportunity to apply for a meditation course. I had already taken 4 courses in Europe. Such a course is always the same wherever it will be taken, the technique is named Vipassana. The first 3 days one would concentrate for over 10 hours a day on his respiration from 4:30AM to 9:00PM with several pauses in between. The last 5,5 days are spent concentrating on the sensations on the body that one can notice mostly only after the first 3 days of intensive concentration on the respiration. The last day another technique will be taught to learn to share benefits that one could get from a course. This last technique is named Metta.
The technique is not based on any kind of believe and is not against any kind of believe: Muslim taking part to such a course will remain Muslims, Christians will remain Christians and Jew will remain Jew. Actually many people having a lot of faith in their religion stated they could pray being much better concentrated after such a course.
Most of people hearing about Vipassana get scared when they come to know it is not allowed to speak for 10 days. It is however far from being hard not being allowed to speak. But the 10 days are far from being easy: not having any kind of communication with anybody forces to be with oneself.
The technique teaches a way to look inside oneself as one is and not as one would like to be or as one would like others see him. Doing so hatred, frustration, envy, selfishness and many other of such aspects that one cultivated consciously or unconsciously will arise in form of very unpleasant sensations. Furthermore sometimes one may have the certitude he has to stop immediately the course, other times high doubts will arise on the course orientation or sense. However the course teaches to observe all sensations and over reactions with equanimity that means as they are. This could look easy and it is hard to really understand the difficulty without living this as an experience.
The thorn may last almost 10 days in the worst cases. Mostly only a few days are very hard. After the 10 days a deep peace will arise. Doing a Vipassana before taking an important decision in his life is the best advice I could recommend. The benefit of the course can really help to change one’s life for a more useful one (cultivating respect, patience and compassion).
It is however not advisable and not allowed to take a course in case of depression or any kind of mentally diseases. It is wiser to go for conventional or traditional treatments in case of such diseases and take part to a course when the symptoms are gone.

More information about the technique here:

http://www.dhamma.org