Traveling is not just about visiting the new places and knowing new cultures but also to meet new people and learn new things from them. My journeys have exposed me to some interesting artists and their artworks. Another such artwork, which perhaps I would never become familiar with if not travelling, was Macrame. As far as I remember, my first conscious encounter with the term macrame was at New ...
Although I had heard the term Vipassana (विपश्यना) a long time before, I came to know about this practice from Ashish, my university batchmate, who had attended a Vipassana course in 2008. From his description I came to know that Vipassana was a meditation technique to look passively, with closed eyes, towards the body while being completely silent for the entire period of meditation. But I was not much enthusiast for this meditation practice until my another close friend had participated in one of the 10 days long Vipassana meditation course of year 2013. It was certain that to be absolutely silent and stay away from every mode of communication for the period of at least 10 days was an essential part of his practice. He mentioned that the gained experiences could not be stated in appropriate words and so he denied to share any detailed methodology, philosophy and experiences. He suggested me that rather than seeking the knowledge from someone who had been through that meditation, I should go for vipassana to gain my own personal experiences. Usually, getting 10 absolutely free days from the outer world and to be completely silent for that period can be considered a nearly impossible task. It took 4 years to identify that moment when I felt that I could spare 10 days for myself. I reserved my slot, by online booking, at Pushkar Vipassana center and on the selected day I reached to the destination to gain the experience.
After my 10 days of meditation, I completely endorse the words of my friend that it would not be appropriate to explain the details of Vipassana and the gained experiences. I would recommend the readers to get this experience on their own, at least once in a life time, and then decide if its worth or not. However, to elicit some interest among the readers, I would explain a few things which are based merely on my understanding and were never explained directly during the course of meditation. We all might be familiar that among the conscious and subconscious minds, subconscious mind is far much more powerful and works as an auto-pilot and is responsible for most of our daily actions and reactions, including emotions, physical movements, hidden phobias, excitements and behavioral patterns. All of us might have have experienced the difficulty in changing or molding the strengthened habits. Theoretically I knew that regular conscious actions go deep and then start to appear automatically, subconsciously, without any conscious effort. Subconscious programming is like an installed software. Vipassana is a practical technique to realize this mechanism at the level of aware perception. Vipassana is a tool to uninstall the software by bringing the deeper subconscious at the conscious surface. By being constantly and consciously aware about the subconscious activities, the softwares of the unwanted habits can be uninstalled or modified and installed back with desired changes.
Second thing which I would like to mention is that Vipassana helps to realize the value of silence. True silence is not only the end of communication from the external world but also the end of communication from the internal imaginary world, including with the self. Once I heard that the true wisdom appears only in the silence. Vipassana made me to realize that what I had heard could be true. Unfortunately, I broke my silence on the 7th day of meditation. I understand that perhaps I had missed the experience which I could have gained by the end of 10 days. I have decided to go for this meditation again for a better and increased understanding of inner depths of my mind.
Travel Parable is meant to share all of my experiences, which I have gained so far (and which will be gained), during the course of my journey inside the mind and around the world. So whatever I have mentioned above is based on my own perception. Everyone can try this meditation by simply booking a slot by online reservation. Interestingly, Vipassana centers are available in more than 100 countries of the 6 continents. This meditation is free of cost and demands nothing except our time and will.
[ For details and online reservation have a look at: Vipassana Meditation Website ]