Monday, March 29, 2010
Vipassana course experience: Registration & the first Night
Since I and some others arrived early, we were able to spend a couple of hours chatting and getting to know one another before the course offically started. It was nice to talk to others and get to know your room mates. I never really got to speak to our third room mate. I'm not even sure what her name was. There were two beautiful women we met who were returning students, one for the 17th time! The other woman was an older woman whose husband also attends with her. A woman from India was also there with her husband, but she was not happy about being there. "My son talked me into it, but I don't want to do it!" she said with a small smile. Her son is preparing to attend the one-year course to become an Assistant Teacher and take the 8 Precepts. She was upset because it would mean no grandchildren or continuation of their family name on her side since he was her only son.
When the introduction was over and no one left the room, we were prompted for any questions we may have. Once the few questions were answered, we were released to return to our rooms until the first discourse of the evening with Goenka on DVD. Once we stepped outside of the room we were not to speak again (exceptions: physical or facility issues, questions for teacher or managers) or make eye contact with one another. We silently filed out of the room, heads bowed, as we took the path back to the dormitory.
We sat for the first discourse (which was wonderful, as they all were) and followed it with an hour meditation after a short break. After the meditation I realized I would not be able to sit at my assigned cushion because of my knee and would require a chair. I spoke to the female manager about the chair and she told me I would have to speak to the teacher the following day.