"We should Skype sometime when you are there," I said. My friend Shantu was leaving for a meditation retreat for 30 days.
"I won't have my mobile phone or access to internet. It is a silent meditation retreat and we are not allowed to have any form of communication," he explained.
"You can't even talk to people staying there?" I was beyond appalled.
"No, no-one," Shantu replied calmly.
"Have you done this before?" I asked. I wasn't doing very well in hiding my surprise.
"Yes, I have already been there twice."
"How was the experience?" I asked, awestruck.
"It was like being born again."
Have you ever gone without any form of communication even for a day? We are constantly connected in some way. We are either online, watching television, listening to music or simply going about our day which involves mundane exchanges of words. Now imagine being all by yourself, alone with your thoughts, without any form of distractions. How are you going to feel? Is it going to bore you enormously? Will you get restless if you don't talk? Will you have the greatest idea that will change the world? Will you simply marvel at your thoughts and enjoy all the time you have in your head?
Give Vipassana a try to figure out all the answers and experience a digital detox of another level.
What is Vipassana?
Vipassana meaning inward vision or seeing things as they really are, is an ancient technique of meditation that originated in India. It was rediscovered by Buddha more than 2,500 years ago and is widely practiced by people belonging to different religions and countries even today. According to the teachings of Buddhism, Vipassana is considered the ultimate cure for one's physical and mental troubles.
Being a sensory thought-watching meditation it aims at attaining the highest level of happiness, that is full liberation, by letting go of all thoughts (not judged as good or bad) that stop us from rising to our full potential. It is a way to self-transformation through mindfulness, which means to be aware of the physical and mental phenomena occurring in the present moment. It involves acknowledging and being fully aware of your body, visions, sounds, smells, tastes, sensations of touch, the feeling of pain and every thought you may have in the moment, but in a detached manner.