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It should be a nun’s life, but monk sounds cooler. After 10 days of Vipassana meditation, I’m back to the online world, I’ve almost forgotten how to type. And now Trech is giving me a quick run through what happened while I was away — Infernez Veneracion, Meganon Fox, Afraidy Aguilar, and she got accepted in HPI School of Design Thinking!

Vipassana meditation Philippines

this is not Vipassana meditation lol

10 days without chatting, reading, writing, electronic devices, connection to the outside, physical contact, stealing, munching outside of designated hours, perfumes, intoxicants, shorts, legs, skin, sexual activity, distracting exercise, and without killing any being (even ants crawling on my bed, insects on my plates nor mosquitoes that bite through pajamas – I’m just not sure whether I stepped on any plant and killed it).

The wake up bell rings at 4 am and we would start meditating at 4:30 up until 9 pm. We have one and a half hour break in the morning to freshen up and have breakfast, 2-hour lunch break, and from 5-6 pm. Other than that, we were meditating. 3 times a day we would have “sitting of determination” where for one hour, we sit in one position, without moving a finger. In the afternoon, we meditate for 4 straight hours with two 5-minute breaks. I became really flexible. I stretched everything possible whenever there’s opportunity.

10 days without dinner, just fruits and tea at the 5 pm break. For the first two days, we were given just 1 banana plus some ginger or moringa tea, and that’s all. I would extend my neck hoping for one extra banana. When the 5 pm bell rang on the 3rd day, I noticed that nobody was interested to get up of bed expecting bananas again. Fortunately, my meditations on avocado came to reality. Once it was just a slice of watermelon, or pineapple. Tougher than that, old students were given only tea and calamansi. I had never intentionally overeaten before. But here, every meal was my last. Worse, I was sharing the table with a pregnant woman, Margaux, who needed special treatment for the baby. While I was savoring every bite of my banana, she was eating pasta, salad, etc… so I never glanced at her.

At home I normally fall asleep at 4 am or after the sun comes up (unwillingly) and I never thought it was possible to sleep before 10 at all. I always had a problem with my posture; I never thought I could ever straighten up my back. I always had to stuff my mouth every 15 minutes and I thought this was my eating style, there was no way I could change it and it actually helped me “focus.” This meditation helped me more than I ever expected. Sustaining it is another issue, but I’ll be working on it. What’s it about? I’ll tell you later, bit by bit.

And the nice thing, everything’s FREE. It’s voluntarily funded by old students; they don’t accept donations from people who haven’t finished a course. All servers are strictly volunteer old students. This preserves the pureness of the teaching.

Pack light

After suffering several trips in the past with heavy luggage full of stuff not used even once, I pledged that I will always be the lightest packer!

So for some 3 days straight, I didn’t change clothes. Nobody complained, thankfully. I always felt fresh anyway. I also didn’t do any laundry. Like the men’s learning, in noble silence nobody complains when someone farts. But actually, I still over packed. I brought 3 bras and didn’t use a single one during the course. Free from bondage, oh wonderful!

Naughty boys

Actually they’re not-so-old men (biologically). A guy named Diego snuck in an audio recorder and recorded the bell. He plays it in the morning that makes some people get up of bed, go back to sleep, get up, go back and get awfully paranoid. He would set the clock an hour advanced. He flew all the way from Boston and back, thinking this was gonna be an amazing vacation at the beach, and was surprised to find mosquitoes, back pain and having to sleep in tin can. Btw, this story came up on the last day after the complete segregation of males and females. Actually, this guy reminded of a past lover. The whole time I had to deal with it (a central part of the meditation).

And I was sleep talking yet again, which broke the “noble silence.” And on the last day, everybody was talking about whom that was. Oh by the way, I broke a few more rules.