Taking A Vow of Silence

 Photo by Brooke Hilder

Blog By Matthew Habchi | August 6th, 2021

A teaching that goes back as far as Buddha must still be around for good reason. I solely chose to embark on this very personal experience called Vipassana to see what would come of it?

The practice consists of a few things. Firstly, you take a vow of noble silence for 10 days. Secondly, you commit to practice the teaching as shown by S.N Goenka. Thirdly, you don’t make eye contact with any of the other participants & you respect their space.

The age-old teaching was created to help one disconnect with the compulsive thinking mind. And I’d seen and heard amazing things happen to people that chose to go through with it.

Now I can only comment on my two & a half days experience, as we were pulled out early because of a pending lock down. So, my full 10-day retreat was not meant to be; not this time anyway. Seems the universe had other plans for me, which I nobly accepted.

I consider myself a very calm, peaceful individual & those of you that have had a Reading with me are likely to confirm this statement. But little did I know, just how chaotic my thoughts were when I was finally given the opportunity to observe them through hours upon hours of meditation.

You see the first three days; you focus solely on the area around the nostrils & the breath/sensations that are felt flowing in & out. This practice is said to help one sharpen the mind. You are to hold your awareness here & the moment you see your mind wander; you are to bring it back to this conscious awareness of the breath. Not an easy task, but I soon became very aware of what my mind was doing.

It was as if I was holding a photo album of my life within my mind & jumping from one time line to another. Thoughts & memories I had buried for decades had come up for reflection. I found that when we are given the opportunity to sit & observe the thoughts for this long, we come up with some pretty startling realisations.

For me, it was simply that we are kept So busy in our day to day lives, that we don’t allow ourselves the luxury to be silent & ponder the thoughts. We miss so much mental & emotional processing, because of this never-ending flow of so called “productivity”. Well, I now understand how not being productive is essential for one’s mental & emotional health, to an even greater degree than I understood before Vipassana.

This vow of silence I took was life changing. How, you might ask? Well, I basically got a snap shot of what was truly possible for humanity. That we could live alongside each other, respect one another, no matter what you look like or who you are, because of this practice. It was a truly humbling experience that not only granted me real inner peace & serenity, but did the same for so many others because of the collective shift we All had together as a group.

Nothing else mattered. I was more present than ever before. So much so, that each day felt infinitely longer than a day in my normal life. I actually find it difficult to put into words, to describe the feeling. Put simply, it was an experience filled with bliss.

But it wasn’t without its struggles of course. One couldn’t possibly meditate for hours at a time all day long without feeling pain in the back, hips, knees & ankles. But none of that seemed to matter in the end. Because it reminds you that all pain is temporary. And that nothing in life is permanent. Just like the sun rises & falls, so do the ebbs & flows of life.

The mutual feelings of love, peace, tranquillity, acceptance & joy were so profound, that it all seemed to be worth it. It also shows you what you’re capable of when you apply yourself & put your mind to it. And it makes you a better human. What more could you ask for?

I want to summarise by saying, that I believe so much in the healing this practice can grant us, that I believe every woman & man on this planet would strongly benefit from just one sitting. At least once in a lifetime. Everyone deserves to stop, pause, reflect & have a real shot at inner peace. So that we can rise up in our human evolution, to meet the demands placed on us in this modern-day world.

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Matthew is based in the Inner Northern suburb of Stafford Heights, Brisbane. 

He works with clients from all over the globe. Readings are by appointment only. 

To book a reading or to find out more, either click on “Book a Reading” or call Matthew on +61422 442 234.

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