Author Topic: Goenka Vipassana and some questions  (Read 2053 times)


Goenka Vipassana and some questions
« on: January 16, 2015, 05:40:13 PM »
I have gone to two 10 day Goenka courses over the span of six months. This is not the first time I have meditated, but I have abandoned my prior practices and have continued to practice this method of Vipassana regularly. And I have been quite confused over the last couple months.

Firstly, the symptoms from the meditation seem a little strange. I feel as if the joy and the happiness that I had became more muddled. There is definately a sensation of stability over time, but on the other hand, it seems as if I have lost many of the desires I had before. This especially includes sexual desire, and not having much of this scared me when I entered college last fall. I actually thought something was wrong with me.

Second, I've had moments of anxiety that I had never experience before. I do not know if this is the product of vipassana or something else. All I do know, however, is that I had a very disruptive roommate on the first vipassana course I had attended. He was coincidentially the same age and from the same city as me, and unfortunately, he broke the noble silence on a daily basis (parents forced him to come), and on the day 7 I gave in. On the 10th day, he got much too social and began playing cards (yes, he brought cards and protein powder) with some of the less serious students in the room until like 4am, and whenever I told them I wanted to sleep, he'd reply with something like, "I wanna see this faggot die". I think that this had bothered me considerably, especially how I had known him before the noble silence began and how later on I actually wanted to have some moment of silence and concentration.

So my question is, with some of the uncomfortable sensations like loss of joy and the anxiety, is it a normal product of vipassana or could it partly be related to what happened above? I've been trying to separate the technique from the organization and the other surrounding people there, but sometimes it has been insanely difficult to do so.

I am also wondering how the 20 and 30 day goenka courses differ. If they do not teach additional things such as focusing on mental objects, etc, I might try the Mahasi Sayadaw method as well. I also believe the IMC method is similar to Goenka's, correct?

Thank you for all your feedback


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    • Teachers were: P.K.K. Mettavihari, Frits Koster, Nel Kliphuis. (In the line of Mahasi Sayadaw)
Re: Goenka Vipassana and some questions
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2015, 11:25:16 AM »
I will react to only part of what you write.

I've been trying to separate the technique from the organization and the other surrounding people there, but sometimes it has been insanely difficult to do so.
Indeed. From what you write this is obvious: Your room mate, and others, did not stick to the rules of the technique, and not to the rules of the organisation.
Did you report this to someone of the organisation? The organisation cannot allow that your use of the technique is so much disturbed by others who simply break the rules.

The centre should not only offer a technique, but also the proper surrounding and organisation that goes with the technique.


Re: Goenka Vipassana and some questions
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2015, 09:11:27 PM »

I did not report this to the organization, as the other individual was 18 and I did not think this was a big concern at the time. Unfortunately I had been wrong, since the incident has bothered me greatly for some time.

It seems that some of the course managers do not really care if someone breaks the rules unless it is a huge distraction to multiple people. It's like a "your fault, your harm" approach.


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Re: Goenka Vipassana and some questions
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2015, 02:20:34 AM »
Your anxieties have absolutely no thing to do with that "disruptive"  individual.  After all the time that has passed since the retreat, you are still hung up on him. This is bizarrely unskillful.

It has nothing to do with him. Let go of him.


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