Seriously. But, really, seriously; I have no idea what I’m about to go through these coming days. As you read this, I will be still in a silent retreat in a pagoda in Battambang, Cambodia. I have done silent retreats before, but of my own. I have, twice, left the house (with Kobi’s blessing) and just sat alone in a client’s underground basement home, in a neighboring small town, where I knew no one. I would sleep days, nights, days, all mixed up and however my body desired; walk for hours, in silence; read whole books at a time; and be, in silence. I would write- one time I actually went through six pens in those 6 days. I would write, until I’d fall asleep in bed, only to be arisen again at 4 am, to keep writing. I wrote about my pain, and pealed layers of if off, slowly, one layer at a time. I cried a lot, too. I also wrote some of my most inspired work- one of which is the 70% completed draft to Burnt Honey: A Practical, but Spiritually Enlightened Parenting Guide.One day, I know, it will see the light of day.
And so, I am about to go to my to my first official one. Before we left home for this voyage, I knew two spiritual things that I wanted: to do a ten day vipasana, and to buy and learn to use Tibetan bowls. So, I’m off to get one done, full knowing now, already, that I want to do another when we get to India, and another in Nepal. I am reading to jump in and scrub my soul in its deepest corners and corridors.
There is so much I hope to walk away solved. This is what I’m trying to write about here. What I think I may discover, and what I hope will be the result. Ever wanted to do the human-experiment? Here we go…
What I’ve Heard About Vipasana Meditations
– you eat at 4 am and again at noon (that’s it, and you are forbidden to bring any outside food with you)
– you don’t walk, write, garden, read, or sleep; you sit for ten hours a day
– it is really tough emotionally and physically
– you stay in a simple room with a mattress on the floor and nothing else
– you go to bed at 9pm and awaken before 4 am
– you can talk with your teacher for half an hour each night, on a need-be basis, to ask for guidance and direction
– it’s crazy, unbelievably-so, what comes up in those hours within yourself
– you can leave any time you want, and some people do, and miss out on what they could have gained
– that people will cry tons, and for hours, and that at some point, day x, whatever it will be for each person; you break through and experience a peace, a soul-silence that is better than any imaginable drug or high ever experienced
– if you reach that, it will stay with you the remainder of your time in silence
What I Guess Will Come Up
– my mom, my dad, my sister, my extended family, a few ‘friends’ who hurt me
– my addiction to that special friend whose ‘death’ killed me, and still does (x10)
– my guilt at not fully being there for my kids, and hopefully, a knowing as to why I’m escaping them and why I don’t need to escape any more
– my addiction, my addiction to my addiction, my not letting go of it, and my strong desire, and stronger resistance, to letting it go
Some Issues In Me That Seek Wholeness
– jealousy, possessiveness
– comparing myself to others
– fear talk, worry about the future, what if someone dies consuming me
– seeing myself as whole, not conditional if my stomach/thighs/butt remains this shape or my stretch marks fade
– recycling pain, living it in, wanting it to feel alive, missing that pain in my solar plexar, and almost bringing the pain back to feel alive
– belonging, still searching, wondering, fearing that I don’t belong
So, that is what I’ve got. A lot of thoughts in random tangents about something I know nothing about. This is what I feel/guess/imagine/pretend to know; what I think may arise; and how I imagine/pray I will be lighter/wiser/more enlightened when I’m done.
Again, I’m totally, totally, totally shooting in the dark. But, hey, it’s a big dark, I may just hit something.
[Note: At the time of writing this, I am only four days away from my Vipasana, and have still not opened their website to read all that I need to know. Another indication of my ignoring, pushing away this unreal gift that I know is about to unfold in my space.]
Ever done a silent retreat? Ever felt the power of silence and being alone with yourself, and what it does to the issues that lay below the surface? Any last words before I come out totally enlightened, pure, and clean? I wish. In Hebrew, there is a saying that states, “From your mouth to the ears of God.” So, may my prayer go straight to the Big Chief, right? Ever faced yourself? What did you find? Was it scary? Amazing? Both?
Would love to hear your thoughts. Or, just stay silent. I can hear that too. Or, more importantly, you can hear it.
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