All Talk and No Action Sunday, March 21, 2010

End of February saw me going for a Vipassana Course in Igatpuri.

While I had ruled out posting on the subject, I did realise how much I enjoyed the experience and how it could benefit everyone.

So, here is my attempt at "selling" this concept to all and sundry.

The course spans 10 days, and for 10 hours everyday, you will learn and practise this ancient technique of meditation called Vipassana.

The most important pre-requisite of the course is "Arya Maun", i.e. observance of complete silence for all 10 days, no gestures or eye contact too.

Of course, you can raise questions/doubts to your teacher. But that's that.

Another compulsion: your cell phones/music players/books etc. should be submitted at the reservation counter. The course requires you to shut off everyone and focus on looking within.

The aim is to empty your mind of mundane thoughts and focus only on meditation.

The end of each day will have Mr. S.N. Goenka deliver talks on whys and hows of Vipassana and its role in Modern Day Living.

While the course requires extreme actions on your part, if followed sincerely, the results will be extremely positive.

I won't dwell on the philosophy and the reasons of pursuing this course. What you take home from the course is entirely your prerogative.

People enroll for various reasons - some to rid themselves of physical/emotional pain, some to get respite from their otherwise gruelling schedules; while some others, just to find themselves.

A few go without expecting and knowing much, and are hit by the enormity of silence.

However, the ample time you spend with yourself helps bring perspective, to a lot of things.

Whatever your station and reason in life, do give this course a chance.

If nothing else, you will enjoy amazingly delicious food, pure air and a truly, luxuriously stay at the expense of past students. Yes, its a free course.

You will also get to experience village life for 10 days since just below the Ashram is a tiny hamlet, complete with hens, gully cricket and power shortage.

You will get to see birds and insects of unknown variety, every single day.

Oh, and if you are lucky enough, in true Bollywood ishtyle, a snake will pass by your feet and you will survive the sudden assault.

This might render you wide eyed and speechless for a few hours, but that's fine. You will have mastered the art of silence by then.

To know more about the course you can visit this and this.


Parth J Dave said...

Awesome, Mukta!

I believe you must have had an amazing experience of Vipassana. Being in silence for 10 days does sound a little challenging, but it is very beneficial. In fact, even Mahatma Gandhi had a habit of being in silence every Monday...

This is a great tool for self-introspection and saving lots of energy..

By the way, 1 question - You were silent for 10 days. No cell phones, no books, no radio, no eye contact... then what did you do the entire day? I mean, didn't you get bored by any chance?

All Talk and No Action said...

@Parth - Yes, a very good experience.

Our days were planned such that we had no time to get bored. Morning 04:30 to night 21:00 we were packed, though with meditation.

Boredom was never an issue. Mind control, impatience and focus were.

MADHU RAO | (INDImag.COM) said...

That was so well explained Mukta. I have heard of it but have not found out if there's any conducted in the city that I live in, I'll be sure to check it out..

Loved these lines ; summarizes the why so succinctly :

People enroll for various reasons - some to rid themselves of physical/emotional pain, some to get respite from their otherwise gruelling schedules; while some others, just to find themselves.

All Talk and No Action said...

@Madhu - Thanks for stopping by. Yep, do give this one a try.
Btw, would love your thoughts on the Afghanistan chapter :)

SK said...

Hey I have heard alot about Vipassana at Igatpuri and of course heard good about it..but not sure if we are allowed to told about it to others so openly!!

By the way, if i had gone wit you anyway i wud have found a bliss..guess why?...Mukta Matta not talking for 10 days!! Its a treat!! :-)

All Talk and No Action said...

@SK - Talking about good things only help to spread the message :)

About us, men and women stay separately. You wouldn't have had the pleasure of watching a silent Mukta anyway.

Anonymous said...

sounds Good ...but for me 10 days in silence is scary :O

Ankit said...

Thanks for sharing your first hand experience. I have applied for the mid-June starting session at Igatpuri. Waiting to get a confirmation of their acceptance. :)

All Talk and No Action said...

@Ankit - I hope you get through. It will be quite an experience, rest assured :)