Six more hours and I will be silent. I am off for what may be the biggest challenge in my life up to today: a 10-day Vipassana course.
I am so nervous.
Ten hours of meditation per day, getting up at 4 am, no talking, no reading, no writing, and only 2 vegetarian meals a day…. what am I getting myself into?
I feel super anxious about if I will be able to do it. I have never in my life not talked for an entire day, let alone for 10 days. Will I be able to cope with the boredom? I am a person who checks her iPhone the second I have a moment of downtime. I cannot sit still for 1 hour straight unless I am asleep. Won’t I get excruciating lower back pain from sitting on the floor day in day out? What if my stomach will make rumbling sounds in the meditation hall? How can I ever concentrate on my breath if the one thing on my mind is food!?
But most importantly: What if I don’t see the ‘light’ after the 10 days? Will I have failed then? When do I consider this to be successful?
And then there are random curiosities about practical stuff: Will I be sleeping in a dorm or have my own room? I hope the food is tasty and plentiful. What type of people will be in this course and how many will we be? What if I need to pee during a session? How to ask someone to pass the salt when I am not allowed to speak or make eye contact? How come I am not even allowed to write down my train of thoughts over the course of the 10 days???
But what the heck, I don’t have much to lose other than 10 days of my life. The course is donation-based.
Here is the daily timetable:
4:00 am Morning wake-up bell
4:30-6:30 am Meditate in the hall or in your room
6:30-8:00 am Breakfast break
8:00-9:00 am Group meditation in the hall
9:00-11:00 am Meditate in the hall or in your room according to the teacher’s instructions
11:00-12noon Lunch break
12noon-1:00 pm Rest and interviews with the teacher
1:00-2:30 pm Meditate in the hall or in your room
2:30-3:30 pm Group meditation in the hall
3:30-5:00 pm Meditate in the hall or in your own room according to the teacher’s instructions
5:00-6:00 pm Tea break
6:00-7:00 pm Group meditation in the hall
7:00-8:15 pm Teacher’s Discourse in the hall
8:15-9:00 pm Group meditation in the hall
9:00-9:30 pm Question time in the hall
9:30 pm Retire to your own room–Lights out