Meditation is one of my most favorite things to participate in. I know that I have talked about it in several of my post. I recently discovered a center where you can go and meditation in the ancient tradition of the buddist monks. The centers which are around the world are free to participants. The course is usually 10 days and covers your room and board. I have been trying to get in to a center for a couple of years now. I finally got accepted in July to the Costa Rica center but then I could not go. I am working on going for my birthday in January. Here is some information about Vipassana, maybe you will want to go, especially since it is free and the wealth of awareness you develop is astronomical.
Vipassana means to see things as they really are is one of India's oldest technique meditation. More than 2500 years ago, it was rediscovered by Gotama Buddha and was taught to him as a universal remedy for the universal ills of the world, ie an The Art of Living.
The goal of this practice is total eradication of mental impurities and to achieve highest happiness of full liberation. Anyone who is interested can participate in the practice and visit a center. It's purpose is to heal the human suffering as well as to assist in healing dis-ease in the body.
Vipassana is a way of self-transformation through self observation. It focuses on the deep interconnections between mind and body, which can be experienced directly by disciplined attention to the physical sensations that forms the life of the body, and continuously interconnect the life of the mind. It is this observation-based self exploratory journey to the common root of mind and body that dissolve mental impurity, resulting in a balanced mind full of love and compassion.
Did I mention that it is Free!! I like the idea that there is a place you can go and do your work with guidance and the rewards you receive will move you life forward in ways that you could never imagine. How many places can you go for such deep work and it is free. What would keep you away? There are centers all over the world that you could attend, all you have to do is get yourself there. I know that once you see, feel, taste and experience the difference in your life, you would certainly want to go back and volunteer so that someone else could get the same experience. I know this is a brilliant idea!
So here is how the course is set up. The technique is taught at 10 days residential course at which participants follow a prescribed Code of Discipline, learn the basics methods, and practice sufficiently to experience it benefical results.
There are three steps to the training. The first step is that for the entire duration of the course you will abstain from killing, sexual activity, stealing, speaking falsely and intoxicants. This simple code of conduct assist in calming the mind which would be too agitated to perform the task of self observation not to mention these things keep you functioning in a lower vibration.
The next step is to develop some mastery over the mind by learning to fix one's attention on the natural reality of the ever changing flow of breath as it enters and leaves the nostrils.
By the fourth day the mind is calmer and more focused, better able to understand the practice of Vipassana observing sensations throughout the body, understanding their nature, and develop equanimity by learning not to react to them.
Finally on the last full day the participants learn the meditation of loving kindness, or goodwill towards all, in which the purity developed during the course is shared with all beings.
The entire practice is actually a mental training. Just as we use physical exercises to improve our bodies, Vipassana improves our minds. Like most things, results develop from continued practice. It is unrealistic to think that all of your problems will disspate in ten days. Everything takes time but change does happen. Within that time, the essentials of Vipassana can be learned so that it can be applied in daily life. The more the technique is practice the greater the freedom from misery, and the closer the approach to the ultimate goal of full liberation. Even ten days can result which are vivid and obviously beneficial in everyday life. It is a valuable tool which to receive and to share with others. You can get more information by visiting the website www.dhamma.org. There you can find out where the centers are and sign up to participate in this amazing experience.
In La'kesh, (I am another yourself) Peace, Love and Good times!!!