Vipassana Meditation Experience
I would like to share with all of you my experience of Vipassana that I had in the month of June. The reasons why I did it are basically two: The first one is because here in Cambodia Buddhism is the main religion and I always thought that by practicing this technique would come to a better understanding of the Cambodian culture. Secondly, this type of meditation has always attracted me as a path to personal growth and especially after the retreat with Father Raj that encouraged us to master our minds. Once I expressed my desire to the community and they all agreed, so I looked for information through internet, applied and got admitted immediately even they were surprised that a religious nun wanted to do it. The Vipassana Meditation Center is not so far from our place, only it takes 2 hours to reach it. The courses they give there are fully organized following the teaching of S.N Goenka, a very famous and known Burmese teacher who nowadays resides in the North of India.
What I found there was a scientific and psychological path of personal liberation, a course to enter into Dhamma knowledge and Vipassana practice. We were almost 150 people (75 women and 75 men) living, eating and practicing Vipassana in noble silence and separated according to gender. We had 10 hours of meditation a day, from 4:00 am that the gong woke us up till 9:00pm. We had 1 hour of Dhamma teaching from S.N. Goenka followed by video as well.
The most I liked is to enter into the experience of knowing how my mind works, how can I focus my mind in my breathing, making it very sharp, able to feel the sensations that arise and pass away in my body. Doing this exercise in fully concentration and equanimity really helps to experience the impermanent nature of sensations which are the cause of our reactions (sankhara), of our mental conditioning behavior, frustrations, aversions and cravings. The aim of the technique is to be aware of that impermanent nature of sensations and learn not to react but maintain equanimity before all the vicissitudes that we might face in daily life. Step by step with constancy and patience this experience will bring a meditator deeper and deeper in the law of Dhamma whose final goal is the full liberation from suffering and attain enlightenment.
Attending this course one learns many more things about Buddha and his path which is universal and offered to all human beings. This path does not require faith in God or in any particular belief, it is a scientific and universal way to rid oneself of misery and discover by observing sensations in the inner self the way of liberation, it means to enter into the sphere of peace, harmony, happiness and compassion. I really hope this practice will help me to react with equanimity and compassion; I would like to become more like Jesus who still hung in the cross only felt compassion and forgiveness towards those who were killing him. I finish my sharing with the wish that at the end of the course all the participants got: “May all beings be happy, peaceful, liberated”

Carmen Cardoza