First 10-Day Vipassana Meditation Retreat

After my application for the retreat was accepted, I started having doubts. Ten days without speaking to others I didn’t see as a problem for me. I like silence. We were also forbidden any reading or writing materials—I’d heard about this before with Zen practice. Also no cell phones, or food we brought in ourselves. No problem, I thought. But eleven hours of daily meditation? With my old back and sciatica-ridden right leg?

I found out that students could work independently much of the time, in their own quarters if they like, where they could stretch out on the bed … Read More

A Meditation Teacher’s Last Talk

Years ago, our meditation teacher left the Lotus Lantern Buddhist Center in order to return to Canada. He laughed when we gathered in the meditation room and saw seven tape recorders laid out on the floor in front of him. In Canada he removed his monk’s robes and wrote his own book on meditation, which he talked about in “The Man Behind Spiritpower.” (Link) (Link) When I asked him about his monk’s name, he said, “Do Gong means ’empty way.’ My interpretation: a way that is empty includes all other ways. So I don’t have a personal path because my Read More