When I first announced I would be going on a 10 day silent retreat it was met by great surprise and quite a few giggles. Miss Emma Lovell, communicator extraordinaire, chatterbox and vivaciously outgoing woman could remain silent for this period. But I did. And I have learnt now, that it wasn’t about that- it was so much more than that.
There is always a method to the madness in India and the Dhamma Vipassana course is no exception. The silence is to help with concentration, to have the ability to focus on self and to practice determination and diligence. It’s also called “noble silence”. We are not making a statement with our silence or shouting out the world. We are choosing out of respect for others and ourselves to practice silence and focus on this wonderful technique.
The 10 days was not a walk in the park that’s for sure. It’s a challenge and one that should not be taken lightly. It’s not a challenge like some say physical test of strength where once you have completed it you can tick it off the list. Vipassana is a change of life and a change in the way you are thinking. Actually it reminds me of the matrix with the red and blue pills. Take the red pill and go back to your normal life and pretend there is nothing more to the world than what you know, or take the blue bill and see how the world really is. With Vipassana the choice to engage and to take it on means that you are on the path to enlightenment and that you are on the way to a happier, peaceful and joyful life.
Vipassana is dedication, hard work and practice. Not only for 10 days, for life. Those who work, those who give the technique fair trial and have faith and devotion to the ultimate goal of truth and enlightenment will be successful.I’ve started walking on the path now and I’m so excited for the continued change.
I thank Lord Buddha and my Guru ji S.N. Goenka for maintaining this technique in it’s purest form and giving me this gift. My eyes have been opened and my world has changed. For the better.