Spiritual Questions and Answers|Vipassana Meditation Series|Part-2

This is in continuation to Spiritual Questions and Answers|Vipassana Meditation Series|Part-1

Hello Dear All

A very warm welcome and Namaste from India . Hope you are Safe and Healthy. I am Rahul Sharma, your friend & companion on your Spiritual Journey of knowing thyself.

Prayer : Before we go any further, lets make an honest & straight from Heart prayer right now for the Souls that have unfortunately departed untimely due to Covid 19. May all these humble Souls gracefully Rest in Peace and may Almighty bless the deceased family members with Courage & Strength to bear this huge loss of life. Like all Bad times , “This Too Shall Pass”.

Preface : Well for the convenience of our fellow Spiritual Seeker friends, we have compiled Top 15 Questions that we have been asked via Mails / as Blog Feedback / as Comments below our Vipassana Meditation Video along with their detailed replies . Please find English version of same Video Content here .

While in the Part -1 here , we have already shared 7 questions & their explanations , subject blog post will cover the balance 8 questions .

( Have translated some questions received in Hindi Language to English for ease of readers )

Let’s start the Raw & Pious Spiritual Knowledge Sharing from where we left in Part – 1 , Here we go :

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Q.08Can depression and /or Anxiety Disorder be cured through Vipassana ?

My Views 08 :

Well I haven’t met a patient directly as such who can confirm that his /her depression got cured due to Vipassana Meditation Camp but going by my own experience at Vipassana camp , I am sure Vipassana will only & only benefit anyone going through such anxieties .Because at the end of the day , it helps you to take hidden emotions of your sub-conscious mind out .And when that happens, anxieties automatically cease to exist .

For my friends suffering from mild depression symptoms /anxiety disorders must attend the 10 day Vipassana Meditation camp and see how they feel, however only mild symptom cases.

Those of my friends who are suffering from severe depression and who are taking medicines prescribed by their psychologist /doctor, should avoid going to 10 days Vipassana Camp for now. Please follow your doctor’s instruction , get stable and then only join the camp because first 3 days at camp are relatively difficult to adjust because we don’t have habbit of leading such strict & disciplined life and sitting in meditation for hours together.

Hope this answers your query !

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Q.09 I take Vitamin Supplements daily , will I be allowed to take them while being at the Vipassana Meditation Camp ?

My Views 09 :

At 10 days Vipassana Meditation Camp , medicines pertaining to only chronic diseases is allowed , that too after verification of Doctor’s prescription . I don’t think Vitamin Tablets will be allowed . See the whole point in Meditation centre people discouraging use of medicines during those 10 days is that , unless your’s is case of acute illness , this fear & insecurity of “What will happen if I will stop taking so & so vitamin supplement / immunity boosters /General OTP drugs ” must be done away with . You are supposed to realise self healing capacity of your body, at least to the extent possible.

Still, if you wish to , you may carry Medical Prescription with you and discuss your concern with the Camp coordinator (Guru ji).

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Q.10 After Dhyan/Meditation sitting , I feel substantial numbness in my feet. What should I do ?

My Views 10 :

I would like to mention three things with respect to your question :

  1. If you have just started off with your Meditation Practice, be it Vipasanna Meditation or otherwise , basically if you have just commenced sitting in ‘spine erect lotus position’ , then I would humbly suggest you to please go a little slow and little easy on yourself for now. Please start with maximum 30 minute sitting in one go and gradually keep raising this time to 1 hour, over a period of 3 months or so. This will help your body, feet in particular to get used to your new posture.

2. Secondly, from Spiritual point of view, your feet getting numb is a rather good sign. If you have ever been to a Meditation camp or even you have been in a Meditation mode consistently for more than 1 hour or so , you must have noticed that not only feet, but your shoulders, thighs, palms etc all eventually become numb in due course .However, there is absolutely nothing to worry about . Infact, this is good in a way that when our phical body becomes relatively numb & inactive while Meditating, then we can feel even the subtler vibrations very clearly .

3.Still, if because of any medical reason or otherwise , you are not comfortable with numbness in feet resulting from sitting in Lotus position , then please don’t worry and instead of Lotus position sitting , you may opt to sit comfortably on chair , though Spine has to be essentially erect. Because at a certain point of time , getting deep into that meditative state is important & not the posture helping to reach there . While yes, Lotus Position is tried & tested posture which helps in Meditation but if you are not comfortable with it , despite regular practice for months, then drop the monkey , drop the burden and simply choose any comfortable position in which you can sit without problem , again with spine erect.

Hope it helps.

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Q.11 After vipassana course , for clam mind & health , should I take vegetarian diet or Non veg diet is also ok ? Please answer .

My Views 11 :

While at Vipassana Camp , they strictly advise to go for Vegetarian or rather Satvik food specifically throughout life .And I too am a vegetarian however, having said that, I must also tell you that I have met with some very senior & serious seekers who believe that food doesn’t affect their Sadhna, they further quote examples of some Buddhist sects residing in cold places where non-veg is allowed .

Again in some sects, for instance Aghor, you are supposed to treat each element as exactly the same, nothing is good or bad in their perception and hence you are not supposed to differentiate between different food items as good or bad .

But , as a conclusion, I would request you and suggest you to please go for Vipassana, maintain a vegetarian diet during and atleast sometime after Vipassana Camp while continuing your Meditation .

Once you start experiencing Vibrations substantially , then you may experiment by having non-veg food if you feel the craving for same. Then observe its affects on your Sadhna. If you feel, having non-veg after Vipassana creates a feeling of guilt or it somehow affects your Meditation experience, then obviously you would get your answer .

Else, if it doesn’t affects your Dhyan in any which way , then you may take your decision accordingly. Bottom line is , you may ask or listen to anyone but please take decision only based on your own experience.

Hope the explanation helps. Namaste !

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Q.12 I have diabetes . Can diabetes be cured completely through Vipassana Meditation ? Also, will my weight be reduced due to disciplined diet & food routine in the camp ?

My Views 12 :

It won’t be right on my part to say that Yes, diabetes can be permanently cured through Vipassana Meditation or that you will loose weight as desired while being at Vipassana Camp.

Honestly ,these are not the right objectives or reasons to plan for joining a Vipassana Meditation Camp at the first place . For these things , please consult, listen & follow instructions given by your doctor.

See I am not saying that Vipassana Meditation won’t help in curing or eliminating these health issues, it most certainly will help but still, all I want to say is that please don’t carry burden of such expectations while going in there .

Please be clear that you are going in there to explore whether at all there is so called “Mystic Spiritual World of Self ” or not ? Whether you can actually feel body vibrations so clearly and for hours continuously as is being told by so many seekers? Eternal peace is within which you should aim to establish yourself, rest of the things, including good health will follow automatically.

Hope the answer helps. Namaste!

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Q.13 My Parents , Cousins and relatives worry that If I will commence my Meditation practice , then I would gradually leave my education , my current life and will eventually disconnect from everyone to become a Saint/Monk. Is this true ? Please Guide.

My Views 13 :

See, honestly , I have no right to comment on something that your respected Parents say to you because one thing is certain, each & every Parent in this world wish only good for their child. Further since I myself love and respect my Parents a lot , hence there is no reason for me to say that you may overlook what your Parents/elders are saying to you.

There is no point in going to any Meditation camp by upsetting them , as otherwise in subconscious mind , you will feel the guilt. But yes, you can always convince them by telling the fact that so many well Qualified doctors , engineers , teachers etc come in the camp with a wish to explore self , to get answer to probably most important question in a human life, “Who am I ?” . Moreover, best part about Vipassana Meditation camp is while being there , you are not made to do any particular ritual or a particular prayer . Infact, yu won’t even find any wall hanging of any Guru ji , not even of Goenka ji’s ( founder of current form of Vipassana Meditation being taught at Dhamma Centres and disciple of Learned Master Sayagyi U Ba Khin). Basically , there is no pomp & show . Plain simple meditation is what goes in there . That’s it.

Finally, regarding their apprehension that you will become a Saint and leave them ,besides everything else – As a matter of fact , I am myself a Civil Engineer, a Travel Blogger, a Son , a Husband and a father to two little kids and very honestly , after being there at Vipasaana Camp for 10 days & being on my spiritual journey for last 5 years , not even for a single moment did such thoughts came to my mind that I should leave my family or work . No. That’s being an escapist while the very essence of any Meditation practice is to make you aware of reality , thereby making you super stable and totally content with your current circumstances at any given point of time.

So please try keep trying to convince them with all heart and if they still don’t want you to go to Meditation camp, then its ok for now ,please respect their decision & try to Meditate at home by focusing on your breathing. When the time will be right, universe will make sure you are at right place .

Namaste !

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Q. 14 a) Can we carry any Spiritual book to read during free time in the Vipassana Meditation Camp ? b) Will clothes to be worn while at the Meditation center be given by Camp Coordinators ?

My View 14 :

No, please don’t carry any reading material in the camp. None is allowed as they want you to focus and surrender 100 % for 10 days to what is being made to practice & understand in the Camp. Otherwise also, you won’t get time to read while being there as You will be occupied continuously for hours in Meditation . Further in whatever balance time is left , you are supposed to do your personal stuff – Freshen up, bath, washing clothes etc . Also , after such prolonged sittings , body also demands rest, especially during first 2-3 days before one adapts to camp routine.

As for the clothes , You have to carry your own clothes, though bedsheet & blanket will be provided.

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Q.15 Does the ways & methods with which knowledge is shared , along with techniques of Meditation being taught at various Vipassana Meditation centres across the world remain exactly the same or they may vary from centre to centre ?


My View 15 :

The best part about Vipassana Meditation centres is that no matter which centre you choose across the world , camp routine and knowledge thus being shared is exactly the same . Infact even minutest of instructions are pre-recorded in the voice of Mr. Goenka ji . He can be heard speaking first in “Hindi” language and then himself translating every single word in “English” .

He did it to ensure that there is no false interpretation / dilution in Vipassana technique being taught after his demise.

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This was it for Part-2 Guys . Hope you found it to be helpful. Do share the feedback in the comments section please .

Meanwhile , you may go through another Blog of ours where you will most likely find answers to your queries regarding Meditation & Spirituality in General :

Photos by Zoltan Tasi , Robert Alvarez , Ksenia-Makagonov, Julian & Zac-Durfant on Unsplash. Thank you so much Guys, Grateful !!

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