Monday, May 9, 2011

What Is Vipassana And Why One Should Try It, Atleast Once, In His/Her Lifetime.

I have been trying many meditation techniques in my life. Initially I had a connotation of meditation as something, after doing which, will fill me with all good, soothing, assuaging sensations in and on my body. So all my efforts and techniques were based upon looking for those particular thoughts and sensations. In the process I was trying to discard all that is unpleasant. Nothing wrong in that; who does not want peace and tranquility after all. But this is a temporary fix. The reason (which I understood later) behind this is the concept of misery. Misery in human life is because of only two reasons. Number one is Craving, and second one is Aversion. And I was doing the same through my meditation. Craving for some particular feelings or sensations or thoughts, while averting the other unpleasant ones.

Then one day I was google-ing Vipassana and came across dhamma website. I registered for a 10 day course, attended it, and survived those 10 days. In those 10 days my connotation for meditation changed. It is now that meditation is all about changing the basic human nature of aversion and craving. And I very well understood the relationship between our mind and body, not by some discourse but by practical application of Vipassana. I realized that there is a very small difference between my Basketball training camps and Vipassana. Practice and practice to change old habit patterns, take the control of mind and body, and to create more equanimity. The rules of this game are very simple, work hard, diligently, patiently, and persistently, and you are bound to succeed.

Now what hard work, what is the work here? The work is very simple too, sit in a posture with back straight, eyes closed. Start from the tip of your head, and move downwards, scanning each body part (initially keep the diameter of the scanner a bit broader, gradually with the period of time, as you get used to this technique, scale it down), upto the feet, and again from feet to the head. But what are we looking for? We are looking for nothing in particular, whatever the sensation is there on the part you are scanning, witness it and move ahead. What if nothing is there? Then witness that nothing is there and move ahead. One have to sit in the same posture and with the eyes closed for 60 minutes. To sit in one posture, eyes closed for 30-40 minutes is easy, but the latter 30-20 minutes are hell, initially. That is the practice of changing the old habit pattern, pain will come, but you have to witness it as a sensation, trying not to create aversion, then aversion comes even after you try very hard not to create it, but then again witness the sensations, moving ahead. And sometimes there are very pleasant assuaging sensations, try not to create craving for it, watch it and move ahead.

The whole simplicity and austerity of this technique lured and impressed me very much. There is no garrulous talk, no fancy music, no place to go to. All one needs is a body and consciousness.