Day 7

4 am. Only 4 days left, I feel good and I slept very well.

4.30 am. Morning meditation. I am full of good will but this time, I can’t hold in place. Not because I am bored, but on the contrary, because I am  too excited. I have a lot of energy. I remember the teaching of last night and I can’t wait to change my life and to change the world ! Many dreams and hopes succeed in my mind. I  need to change my sitting position many times. I would like to go out and walk a bit but I don’t want to waste the precious time left. I start to get obsessed by the idea of seing the sunrise again. I decide to leave the meditation hall, it will be that last time. I promisse. I sit under a tree and meditate. But I am still not able to concentrate. I start waling around, and breathing deeply to calm down. I don’t know what is going on inside me. but must be something intense. At least it is a positive feeling. A feeling of action. I got stocked into passivity the last few years and it is good to feel this kind of energy.  I want to be active after Vipassana. Something changed deep inside, I know it. I am not able to put it in words or thought yet, I just feel it. I sit down on a bank and try to meditate again. It is very hard to concentrate and I can’t wait for the sun to arise. When the sun comes out of the mountain, I am stunned. Such a beauty. It is even more beautiful than the last time. This moment is is so pure, the shapes of the mountain becomes more present, the sound of the nature waking up please me, and sky slowly passes from darkness to light very gently. It touches my heart for real.  Thank you nature for being so beautiful. I love you nature. I surprise myself. Why am I so excited about life suddenly? I appreciate this last sun rise and promises myself to stay in the hall for the next meditation, it is way too distracting to be outside.

6.30 am. Fruits again ! I want to dance in the dining hall. I hold myself with difficulty. The little cat is also here. I smile while petting him. He is so cute, his little eyes are curious. I wish I can speak cat to share my joy with him but I have the feeling he understands. What is going on ? Is it celebration day ? Thank you God, thank you Goenka, thank you Vipassana, thank you Tiru, thank you thank you thank you.

8am. Back inside the hall, I am more motivated than never. This time I will hold my position and I will succeed. I cross my leg and start breathing. Whenever I am about to move I breathe deeper and call my inner strength. I know I can do it and I will do it. I can feel sensation of pain in my knee but the worse pain is on my sitting bones. As if a fist was pushing on my coccyx. The pain is unbearable and I am tempted to move but I remain immobile. I don’t give a shit I will finish this fucking meditation. I am surprised to be so rude but it helps me hold on. I want to scream out my pain. How long will it be ? This is a real torture, the small little move generate an unbearable pain all in my buttock. I enjoy the challenge. I will do it, I will do it. When finally Goenka starts to sing the mantra, I want to cry from joy. Only 5 more minute and I will be free from pain, I can’t believe I did it. 5 min seems to be an hour now. I don’t want to break all my efforts by moving before the end, I hold on but it is very very very hard. When the mantra stops, I move very slowly on the side. I massage my buttock quickly, I feel exhausted, but not tired. On the contrary, I am full of an intense and deep joy. I feel deeply proud of me. Even if I know it was not a real mediation, I managed to fix myself a goal and reach it. That gave me assurance I can do everything I want, I can overcome pain. I did it.

10 am. Next meditation. I am not sure I can do it again but I will do my best. This time I feel like following Goenka’s instructions and start the body scan with Vipassana technic. I choose a confortable position and start to feel the sensation on the top of my head. I don’t really feel anything. The more I concentrate, the less I am able to feel. But at least I stay immobile. Pain comes in my knee, I am tempted to move. I focus again on my body and try to feel all the part of my body, the touch of my t-shirt on my stomach, my tights, my knees, my feet under my thighs, the pillow under my buttock, and back to my head again. I have to change my position. I won’t be able to hold the entire meditation and I prefer to focus on the body scan this time. At the end of the meditation, I am surprised I managed to focus mainly on my body and my breath. It is a good day today. I didn’t even felt bored the whole morning. Outside the meditation hall, I start walking a bit when I see a wonderful white bird right in front of me. I am fascinated by its beauty. I remain immobile. I want him to stay as long as possible with me. I feel honored to be so close to him. Suddenly he flies away. My eyes follow his flight in the air until he disappears. It tastes like pure freedom. Nature is powerful. I feel full. What a day !

11.30 am. Usual Rice time. I try not to complain mentally, but it is quite hard for me to enjoy lunch time, especially because it has been 6 days now that I am not able to go to the bathroom… because of too much rice.

1 pm. Usual after lunch meditation. But this time I am looking forward facing a new challenge. I want to remain immobile again focusing only on my breath for the whole meditation, and if I succeed, I will be very proud of me.  I find a confortable position on my sitting bones, sit straight and start breathing through my nose. I am surprised how easily I am able to breathe through my nose now. It is not a problem anymore and I realize how much everything is just habits. I enjoy the feeling of air inside my lungs, I feel free and relieved. Pain comes back in my knees and my sitting bones quite quickly but I will hold on my challenge, and not move at all. I want to work on my motivation. And time passes slowly again, I try to focus my attention on my breath by most of my attention is taken to fight against pain. I am not able to let it go. I know this is better to change position and meditate on my breath instead of fighting against my pain, but I really want to do this challenge. I won’t move and I want to prove myself I can do it. The more difficult it is, the stronger the pain enters my mind and drives me crazy. I am about to move when I start breathing deeply and give my best to observe my pain without reacting to it. I know I am definitively not following Goenka’s advice, and I might be multiplying my misery, but my intuition tells me to hold on. Something is happening deep inside me with this challenge. I start to believe in me very strongly. As if huge pain and anger were waking up my sleeping soul by shaking it firmly. I feel connected to a bigger Me. I feel safe relying on my capacity to be stronger than unpleasant sensations. And when Goenka starts singing the end mantra, my heart is about to explode. I knew I will do it. I am full of gratefulness… towards myself. I know I can do whatever I want and a huge anxiety of the futur flies away. I know I will be fine. I can rely on myself. I needed this. I came for this kind of feelings and it is even stronger than I could imagine. I really feel grateful. Even if I know it is just holding a position and life is way more challenging, I got in touch with my hidden strength and that gave me a lot of peace.

3 pm. Next meditation, I will be less demanding this time. I will focus on Vipassana technic and do my best. I start to follow Goenka’s instruction and feel the sensations from bottom to top, top to bottom. I am able to feel some parts of my body, but I find it difficult to follow the flow continuously as Goenka described. My attention is discontinuous. I focus on my neck, then I realize my attention is on my arm, then on my back. My mind is often interrupted by thoughts that breack the body scan and take me away quickly. I know I still have a lot to work on but I have faith in myself now. I do my best to meditate and when the meditation ends, I stand up very peacefully to go to the dinning hall. A new kind of energy surrounds me. I feel trustful and peaceful.

5pm. I drink my tea slowly and enjoy every bean of my cup. When I am done, I wash my dishes calmly and go towards my room to have a short rest. I knock down on my bed, and fall deeply asleep. When the bell rings, I am in the middle of a dream. As soon as I open my eye, I forget my dream. I wish I can remember my dreams. I have the feeling it was an intense one.

6pm. Walking towards the meditation hall, I start thinking. Almost the end of the day. Almost 7 days gone.I can’ believe it. I know I don’t have much time left to meditate seriously but I really don’t feel like doing this one. I feel exhausted by this day, and I achieved a lot today. In front of the meditation hall, I feel a different energy in the air. I start looking around. Some women are laying down on banks, some are hugging trees, some are contemplating nature. I also feel strangely peaceful and quiet. I enter the meditation hall, and sit down. I hope this meditation will pass quickly. It was a lot of emotions today and emotions are tiring. I appreciate this calm deep inside me as if I had run for 3 hours. I decide to focus on my breath and the feeling on my upper lips, seems easy to do now. When the bell rings, I am not meditating, but flying somewhere in my mind. I feel really strange. I need some fresh air. Outside the hall, I can’t resist the envy to hugg a tree too. I don’t care anymore of the aunt or the others. I place my arms around the trunk, I close my eyes and feel the tree. I am surprised. The tree feels really strong and powerful, I really feel secured. I just want to stay like this for ever. It feels really good, I have to admit. I promise not to judge anyone anymore after hugging this tree. Another bell wake me up. It is time for the evening teaching now. I feel deeply grateful to be here.

7.30. What a pleasure to see you Goenka tonight again. You always have the good words for me. You help me connect to my child dreams, you allow me to believe in a better version of me. You make me realize how powerful I can be. And you make me laugh and cry during this teaching. What a beautiful moment.

9pm. Last meditation is a preparation for sleep. I am almost sleeping when the bell rings. I can’t wait to be in my bed. End of the day !

I am really exhausted. The shower is fast and I start preparing my bed when suddenly a scream escapes from my throat. A huge spider is here, on my bed, black and HUGE. It is there on my pillow. A strong shiver shakes my body. This must be the shivering sensations Goenka was talking about during the Vipassana instruction. Now I am able to feel it very strongly !!! How funny it is!  I am in shock, I can’t move. My roommate runs towards me. I show her the big spider. She makes me a sign saying that she has everything under control, she grasp a glass and comes back to my bed. But the spider is not here anymore. We start looking around the bed, everywhere. Oh no, here inside my bed, we find a dead body of another spider. Another shiver spreads all along my back again. I must have killed it during my sleep by moving, I can’t believe it. I am shocked. Still no spider, we have to find it. Here it is, under my bed, there are 2 of them OMG ! My roommate manage to put the spider inside the glass, take a piece of paper and slip it under the glass to move the spider outside. One is out. As if she did it all her life, she repeats the procedure to move out the second one. They are gone. She smiles at me, I smile at her hardly. She goes back into her bed. Here am I. Facing my bed, with fear. I remember my words yesterday « Try not to think about it » This is the most useless words ever pronounced in this silent retreat. Life is really funny. I am teared up between the envy of laughing and crying, I am in shock. I start to prepare my bed and this time I close the mosquito net very very meticulously. I am not tired anymore, I feel a lot of sensations inside my body that keep me awake. Impossible to sleep. The extraordinary advice still resounds in my head « Try not to think about it ». I really try not to think about it, even to focus on my breath, I try it really hard, but I turn and turn and turn in my bed many times. Few hours later, I manage to fall asleep but the  night is agitated.

Day 8

4 am. I wake up tired. I feel ashamed for last night reaction. I definitively needs to work on myself to get rid of my fears.

4.30 am. I am sitting in the meditation hall. Humility is back and I know I just have to work harder. I start feeling the sensations around the nose area. I can clearly feel the touch of my breath, the air coming in and going out, the difference of temperature between both. I start the body scan from the top of my head. I concentrate to feel the shape of my head, the touch of my hair on my neck. My mind is disturbed by the envy to move my position but I start breathing deeper. I come back to my neck, go to the right arm. It is strange I don’t feel my arm, I don’t cannot feel it but I know it is here for sure. I concentrate more. I guess its shape from the touch of my T -Shirt, I continue until I reach my hands. I feel them on my knees, each finger. I start again from the basis of my neck and goes to the left. Left shoulder is here, but it is really hard to feel some part of my arm. I don’t discourage myself. I start to go down my back, my tights, my knees, my calfs, my feet . I manage to finish the body scan until the end and start again. From the top of my head. I still don’t feel the electromagnetic field Goenka talked about, I know I still need to practice and it will come eventually. Even when pain starts on my sitting bones again, I ignore it. The end of the meditation is really hard, pain is starting to weaken my mind. I remain immobile and pray for strength silently. I want to do it, and I will do it. This is how it works as in real life. Never give up and do my best. I am stronger than any pain or sensation. When Goenka sings the mantra to end the meditation, I feel a deep joy growing inside. I decide not to embrase it. I remember the last days being exhausted by emotional ups and down. I won’t do the same today. I keep this joy deep inside me, and appreciate it, knowing it will disappear and come back again. Very quietly, I stand up to go go out of the meditation hall and walk slowly towards the dinning hall. I feel very serious and centered but also I am proud. I try not to think about it too much. I am scared that my ego starts again. I just want to finish this Vipassana seriously, and I feel ready for it now.

6.30 am. In the dinning hall, I take my rice portion, my tea and sit down. My movements are curiously slow. I make no effort to eat slowly, and enjoy each mouthful. When I am done, I walk slowly to my room and sleep for an hour. It feels good to be quiet.

8am. When the bell rings, I wake up with the same determination. This nap was very powerful, I don’t feel tired anymore. In the meditation hall, when Goenka start to give his instruction, I listen very carefully. I am ready for the body scan again. Maybe this time I will be able to feel these electric flow, let’s see. I start the body scan seriously and when pain is too strong, I prefer to change my sitting position instead of disturbing my meditation. I am surprised to hold each position longer and barely change it for 2 hours.. Thoughts show up while I am meditating : I know what I want to do after Vipassana.  Memories pop up like a flash and I make some important realizations about myself. I wish I could write them down before I forget about it. But I prefer not to react, as important as it is. I am here just to observe them, not to react to them.  I feel very grateful while I meditate. This meditation is amazing.

10 am. Last meditation of the morning, I keep the same motivation. This time I am able to keep the same position for the whole meditation and observe my sensations. I want to go deeper, I want to feel deep the sensations inside me. I feel my heart beating, my lunge, my stomach, my brain. I am exploring inside my body, maybe I am raving because of the heat, but the sensation feels real. I am curious I have never done this before.

11.30 am. Lunch time. I walk very slowly towards the dinning hall. I feel peaceful. On my way, I appreciate the white butterflies flying in front of me, I pay attention to the flowers around and enjoy the touch of the sun. After lunch, my friend is here. So white, so cute, so loving. I give him all my love and go to my room to have a nap. May this peace stay with me forever.

1pm.  I am looking forward to meditate. I have to admit I start to like it very much. This meditation is a bit more agitated than the morning ones but for a few second, I can feel some new sensations that I never felt before, like a flow of energy all along my spine. I am not sure if it is really happening or if I created it as I wishing for it. My body feels really alive. I feel life and some movements inside me. But my mind start to get agitated again. I am afraid to loose those sensation when Goenka’s voice resound in my head « Whatever sensation arises, don’t develop craving for it. Don’t multiply your misery ». Fine, I will focus on my breath again and start the body scan again. I am playing with myself, and I love it. I feel excitement and fear in the same time. Too late, I start thinking again and I forget about meditation for a moment. I come back to my breath. I realize how excitement is a brake to the meditative work. I try to remain equanimous and continue my own exploration. When Goenka starts sing the end mantra, I am singing with him mentally.

3 pm. I am more motivated than ever for the next meditation. I am willing to purify my mind and go to a settler level. I want to stay here, inside my body. It feels safe when I manage to concentrate on my sensations, when no mind is here. It is such a peace that any fear disappear. I wish I had experience this before the spider. Or maybe the spider helped me go to this level ? For a while I feel bored as it is very hot but I do my best to focus on the sensations inside my body until the end of the meditation.

5pm. Beans time ! I love those beans, it still make me happy !  Funny how time passes faster when you feel good. It is almost the end of the day and it didn’t felt very long. After eating, I prefer to go for a walk instead of sleeping. I don’t feel tired at all. Just very warm. I notice 2 white birds next to the dinning hall. I come closer to them. It seems to be a couple. Most of the women are outside too.  I can feel a very peaceful energy around.

6pm. We all walk towards the meditation hall. Few women are already in front of the hall. Before entering the hall, I allow myself to hug a tree. I sit down for meditation and for a second, I am lazy to meditate. As quickly as the though appeared, I ignore it and start entering my inner world. While I am meditating, I notice my mind is clearer. I able to identify clearly my thoughts when they show up and be clearly conscious of them. As if a huge cloud vanished. I just let them come and go. I experience clarity, and that creates a deep feeling of confidence inside me. I feel it growing. I am not a lost soul, I knew it. I feel very touched by what is happening to me.  I can’t even remember when was the last time I felt present to myself like that. It is the most powerful feeling I ever felt. I had to wait 8 days for it but I will never forget it.

7.30 pm.  I feel like a little girl waiting for her dad to read a nice story before sleeping. I wish Goenka was giving his teaching here with us. I will give him a huge hug. This teaching is one of the best since the beginning. I feel blissed today.

Day 9

4 am. When I wake up, I am a bit sad. I know there are only 2 days left. I want to stay more now I tasted real meditation. I am thinking about staying for longer here, to continue meditation. I must be crazy !

4.30 am. Inside the hall, there is an electric problem. No fan. It is warm and it will get warmer during the day. Hard to feel anything else than sweat, but I keep calm. I remain peaceful and immobile. I even like it, it feels like a new challenge. I manage to keep my position for the whole meditation and to focus on my sensations, I feel stronger than ever.

6.30 am. Breakfast time. As peaceful. As beautiful.

8 am. Still no fan. Never mind, I have self confidence. I have will. I love me. And that is very new. I let those feeling arises while I am meditating.  I have to move to dry my face many times and it is hard to stay focused. But I come back quickly to meditation every time. What a pleasure ! I don’t want it to end. I just understood how it works. Why did it take so long for me ? I react immediately and come back to my breath again.

10 am. It becomes a real game to meditate. How weird it is. Such a shame it will end up soon. I will ask to stay for a few days more. I want to practice more now I understood how it works. In the middle of the meditation, electricity comes back and we can enjoy some « fresh » air again. What a relief, I can feel everybody share this feeling. I smile internally.

11.30 am. Lunch time. Still in peace.

1 pm. Curiously I feel lazy to meditate but I don’t want to waste so many efforts and keep concentrated. I remember the deep connections I had yesterday with myself and that gives me energy and motivation.  I start concentrating and I am able to feel new sensations in my spine, inside my stomach and in my throat. After 9 days with myself, I am still able to surprise me. It is fascinating. I feel curious and want to explore even more. What a shame it is going to end, I wish I can stay more and discover more. I know it will be harder to repeat this experience outside Vipassana. Time is precious here, let’s not waste it. But today I feel bored and it is harder to meditate than the day before. I don’t judge me. I am kind with myself and do my best until the end.

3 pm. Time to meditate again ! I am still not enthusiastic for meditation, but I find a good position and start meditating again. I will hold on and not listen to my mind, time is precious and being here is a gift, I shouldn’t waste it.

5 pm. It feels like I have always been here. I take my tea, my beloved cup of bean and enjoy them peacefully outside the dinning hall. The white birds I saw yesterday show up. I observe them quietly walking among the rare vegetation, looking for food apparently.  What a bliss ! When they fly away, I wish I could fly with them and stay in this state for ever.

6 pm. Meditation is a bit harder, I cannot really concentrate but I am already very grateful for what I experienced during the day. I actually feel excited. I think about the birds again. I wish I was a bird, free from my mind. I promise to myself to do my best to remain free from my mind after Vipassana, it is one of the most precious experience I have ever done since I am born, not to say the most.

7.30 pm. Goenka explains it was the last silent day. Tomorrow we will be able to talk. I am surprised. I thought we will stay in silence for 10 days. I am a bit scared to talk, I have to admit. After the « Dont’ think about it » I wish I will say more valuable things when I will open my mouth.

Day 10

4 am. I feel very very very happy. We are allowed to talk after 10 am.

We still need to do finish 2 more meditations and it will be the end of this experience. I have troubles to meditate and connect to myself like the day before. I know it is the end and I am happy it is.

10 am. We are allowed to talk. I don’t really feel like talking. I don’t know why. I am shy, and I realize how confortable it was to remain in silence. I am scared to talk and prefer to stay alone. I can hear voices everywhere, laugh, scream, joy. So noisy ! I go back to my room in silence waiting for the first movie to start. My roomate is not here, I feel relieved. What is going on ? What is happening to me ? Why am I scared to talk to the other women ? Did I go crazy ?

Back inside the meditation hall the first movie is about Goenka’s action in UN. It is very interesting. I slowly realize the importance of Vipassana all around the world and get to know Goenka’s history. I am very impressed and sure that I will give back what I learnt here. This is way too important, especially nowadays, in this world full of fear with a crazy lack of self love. All we need is love !

Lunch time, everyone is talking. I still haven’t said a word. We are allowed to pick up our belongings at the reception. While queuing, a german girl start talking to me. I smile at her and words come out of my mouth. It feels weird. As if there is a delay between me saying something and the sound of my voice. As if the voice wasn’t mine and I was out of my body, witnessing the scene. I ask the girl if she has the same feeling. She feels also the same. I am relieved. We go together for lunch but I prefer to listen to her rather than talking. Some girls are very dynamic and want to talk to everybody. One of them come to us and start asking where do we come from ? I am still not confortable talking and I don’t want to push myself too much. This is how I feel right now and I can’t do anything about it. I will accept it but for a sec I am scared I will stay like this for ever. Suddenly I remember the peace I felt few days before and start to calm down. Everything is going to be alright. Just be yourself ! This thought brings me a lot of piece and I am not ashamed to behave like I want. I accept who I am and I don’t care about what the others will think about me. If I don’t feel like talking, I will just keep on smiling and being quiet and I am proud of doing what I want. I can definitively feel something changed inside me, for a second I feel very grateful again.

Back inside the meditation hall, the second movie is starting. This time it is about Prisons in India. It is the story of an incredible woman named Kiran Bedi, the former Inspector General of Prisons in New Delhi, who experimented Vipassana inside the harshest prison of India and strove to transform the notorious Tihar Prison. This movie show the prisoners experience, how they underwent profound changes to a fresh start toward an improved and more positive life. The movie ends up with prisoner crying and kissing Goenka one by one to thank him for what they experienced.

I suddenly feel my heart squize very much. Tears come out of my eyes and I start crying too. I feel profoundly touched by this movie. I know what they experienced as I lived it too and I am as grateful as those prisoners. Life is a prison, we are our own slaves. Tasting freedom is such a bliss I wish the same to all humain beings. This moment is very beautiful. I am not the only one to cry. Around me many of us are, I am even more touched.

I swear I will give a part of my life to spread Vipassana. I know that the only way to end with suffering, hate and killing is that everyone works on himself. And this technic is the most powerful I have ever experienced. I dream of peace, freedom, happiness and love. People use to tell me I am a dreamer, and an idealist and I should leave wonderland. But here, now, I feel legitimate to follow these dreams and make it one of the purpose of my life.

After the movie, the women who took 2 cups of beans come to me and smile at me. Her eyes are shinning, I can feel sweetness, Kindness, love through her eyes. It is very strange but I feel like hugging her. Her name is Atu. I embrase her strongly with my arms and tell her I can see her beautiful soul through her eyes. She starts crying and tells me I am beautiful too. I am overwhelmed by this love energy, it feels so good I just want to stay like this forever. We start walking together and on the way, I see 2 white butterfly flying together with joy, turing around each other and they seem to come right to me. They come very close and suddenly, I can see myself open my hands in front of me. For maybe 2 second, they are here just above my hand, dancing and being beautiful. It is incredible, I can’t believe it, I feel like they came to say hello and spread their joy too. What an image ! They fly away as they came, joyfully, beautifully, lovely. I look at Atu, ha has a huge smile in her face. We don’t need to talk, silence is enough to share this beautiful vision. I am glad she is here to share this with me. I feel immensely grateful to Atu for being such a beautiful soul and to Universe who brought me here.

May all human beings be happy.