Author Topic: health problems and vipassana  (Read 160 times)

MarcT

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health problems and vipassana
« on: November 12, 2017, 01:40:35 AM »
During the last year I have abanded my vipassana practice. From time to time I am trying to practice it again but not really successfully.  Therefore I would like to go back to a 10 days retreat. But I have problems with rheumatism and I am afraid that it will be a tale of woe and not really beneficial. I went already 3 times to a retreat and I know it is already hard even if you are in a good health condition. Does someone has an advice for me as I would like to return to this technique but I can't do it alone.

Thanks in advance

playground

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2017, 09:21:12 AM »
Hi MarcT,

My first thought is, would your rheumatism be eased by sitting on a chair ?
If so, perhaps you could do your 10 days med, sat on a chair at the back of the hall.
Or for some sessions, you might lay on your bed, or perhaps stand up.

Sitting on the floor can be a special kind of torment; even for people who
have super limber legs and hips.

My second thought is,... as an experienced meditator, you're eligible to attend
the 3 day events.  And you're also eligible to volunteer as a server/helper.
(1) perhaps a 3 day event would be enough to get you back into the swing
of things.
(2) perhaps working as server/helper, you'd be immersed in that meditation
culture, and maybe that would be enough trigger those old aims and values.

Perhaps keeping to a regular meditation practice would be easier if it had
a social element:  eg:  group meditation events, on a Wednesday evening.

be happy :)



Alex

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2017, 01:10:31 PM »
Hi MarcT

Good suggestion from playground (meditating on chair or lying down), but it could be that 10 days is too intense for you physical conditions right now? Maybe there are shorter retreats, retreats with a less demanding schedule or retreats including some yoga?

Looking for sangha, as suggested, might be a good way to regenerate your home practice. Maybe taking a moment every day to contemplate your intention/motivation might also prove to be beneficial.

I’m also wondering… more specifically… why is it difficult for you to maintain a regular practice? It could be beneficial to look at that... if you don’t mind sharing...

Kindly
Alex

MarcT

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2017, 04:57:21 AM »
Thank you guys for your advice. 

Indeed I thought myself to join the retreat as a server.
The next 3 days course is only in August next year. Sitting on a chair would surely relieve as well the pain. Must check before with the center if they allow that. Normally it shouldn't be a problem.

greetings Marc

playground

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2017, 09:46:39 AM »

Your choice extends beyond Goenka's version of vipassana.

Goenka offers courses in the U Ba Khin 'lineage' of vipassana.
There's also the IMC (international meditation center).
These centers are also focused on U Ba Khin's lineage of vipassana.
U Ba Khin taught several tutors.... not just Goenka.

See here:
http://www.internationalmeditationcentre.org/uk/schedule.html

Mainly, they advertise their 10 day courses, but they also allow
people to attend for individual  weekends.... so i think you need to
email them  personally to find out which weekends are available.

They have courses available in Nov 2017 and Dec 2017.
Which is clearly a lot sooner than August 2018.

Incidentally, the IMC schools are the way to go if you want to
become a vipassana teacher.  The Goenka schools don't have
"qualified" teachers (other then Goenka himself),
they only have teaching "assistants".  Goenka never
accepted teacher-students, and so he never qualified any teachers.


MarcT

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2017, 02:18:31 PM »
Thanks playground for your help. The problem is ..... I'm living in Cambodia  :)

There is 2nd center in Cambodia in Battambong which is pretty far (12 hours by bus) but there I also have to wait but only until april for a 3 days course. The best would be to get rid of this sh.. health problem and then join a 10 days course because I feel  that I need the noble silence

playground

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2017, 12:51:13 PM »
Thanks playground for your help. The problem is ..... I'm living in Cambodia  :)

There is 2nd center in Cambodia in Battambong which is pretty far (12 hours by bus) but there I also have to wait but only until april for a 3 days course. The best would be to get rid of this sh.. health problem and then join a 10 days course because I feel  that I need the noble silence

Do you have any ideas about how you can get rid of this health problem ?
Or perhaps, do you have ideas about how to reduce it ?

MarcT

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2017, 12:29:23 AM »
I have an idea but if it will resolve this problem.... who knows.  I will go for a couple of days to Vietnam. I know a naturopath in Can tho. I hope it will work

playground

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2017, 02:18:24 PM »
hi MarcT,

Earlier you said that it would be easier for you to get into
a regular meditative practice, if you could do something
about your rheumatism.  So the alleviation of your rheumatism,
has become a pre-condition for your practice.  So in effect,
it's blocking your practice.  And it seems you have two problems:
(1) the presence of the rheumatism and
(2) absence of a regular meditative practice

I want to suggest that you can use the fact of your rheumatism
as a stimulus to your meditation (not a block).   And hence you
might kill two birds with one stone... so to speak.
Meditation is perhaps the solution to your rheumatism.

Now is a perfect time to tell you the story of U Ba Khin.
U Ba Khin wasn't a monk.  He was an accountant and civil servant.
He developed a cancerous growth under his eye, that was
somehow routed into both the flesh and the bone.  Not an
easy thing to remove surgically, and it's under his eye, so
surgery would have left significant scarring on his face. 

U Ba Khin set about addressing this problem with meditation.
He tried many different meditation methods.  With regular
practice and focusing upon the sensations from his top lip
his condition began to improve and the cancer/tumor went
away.... completely.  Naturally, U Ba Khin was extremely
relieved and he thoroughly believes in the efficacy of the
'top lip' technique.

U Ba Khin is then encouraged, by an enlightened monk, to
become a meditation teacher... which he then does.
He then decides that his dream, is to start a meditation
center, so that others can benefit the way he has.   
Although U Ba Khin died in 1971, his vipassana meditation
center is still going (InternationalMeditationCenter.org)

I've attached a pic of U Ba Khin (for curiosity's sake)

So .... U Ba Khin, who had an enormous impact on the
growth of the vipassana movement, firmly believed that
health issues could be cured with meditation, and specifically
with vipassana meditation.

Of-course, cancer is often fatal.  it has a nasty habit of
spreading around the body and creating lumps everywhere.
I suspect that, if meditation can cure cancer, it can
probably deal with rheumatism too.

But that's not all, there's more to this story.   U Ba Khin
had a student who had been struggling with crippling migraine
headaches for many years.  He tried a variety of solutions to
his problem, pharma drugs, traditional Indian herbal medicines,
acupuncture, etc.   The student heard the story of U Ba Khin's
eye and decided to give it a shot.  The student was called
S.N. Goenka.  And vipassana meditation _did_ cure his migraine
headaches.   

I imagine that either, meditation itself, will initiate processes
within your body, that help it to heal itself.  And/or  whilst
meditating with the intention of curing your rheumatism, ideas
will 'pop' into your mind, that will help you to reduce the problem
in various ways. 

A final thought:  I gather than rheumatism and arthritis are often
confused, even by doctors; the symptoms are very similar. 
And i know that there are lots of people that swear that their
arthritis was cured by taking Boron supplements. see here:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7889887
http://cheflynda.com/2015/03/the-inexpensive-arthritis-osteoporosis-cure/

So in summary, i'm suggesting that you don't make your meditative
practice dependent upon improved health, instead, you might improve
your health, by meditating.

be happy :)

PS... 
perhaps meditating in warm bath of water would take the weight off
your limbs.  If you add a cup or two of epsom salt (magnesium sulphate)
to the water, your muscles will relax... removing tension and perhaps
aches and pains.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2017, 02:28:17 PM by playground »

MarcT

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Re: health problems and vipassana
« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2017, 03:54:25 AM »
Hello Playground,

thank you for your encouraging words.

The secret of people like U ban Kinh or Goenka lies probably in their faith.....