Our inner wealth is so infinite that we completely ignore it… Maximum Life
The objective of this analysis is not so much scientific, but rather to express a global feeling, the fruit of personal observation over time.
What conditions human beings on this earth ?
Why do they feel more stress at times ?
What gives life a bitter taste? Who is so beautiful…
Why are so many famous people drifting ?
What elements will condition my future ? My joy ? My love ?
We could find a thousand reasons to wonder about this.
Perhaps creative thought, as destructive, it is the very essence of life and our emotions.
Yes, indeed, it is not so simple to analyze our emotions, behaviors, drifts, because our unique mind is the source of a past which also has all these specificities.
It is then that everything begins, the search for who we are, why we are on this earth, our Cartesian mind searches for answers in order to feed the depth of its attention. The trap of our “modern” society can then close against us, or, on the contrary, raise our level of consciousness.
Our Mind Conditions Us
With time, the different experiences of life, it is sometimes necessary to take the time to ask ourselves, to take stock of what led us to this stage of our life and what were the reasons for it.
As you will probably have noticed, it is quite possible to go around in circles for days, weeks, months, years, in order to access what really makes us vibrate, illuminates our spirit, our soul and is fully the source of our happiness.
Spiritual awareness is a beautiful gateway that allows the emancipation of the human species. I do not mean in any case here the religions which represent external entities, we speak here of you, of your unique being, of your Faith.
It is with fervor, passion and Love, as our life is consumed, that the doors open, offering us immense possibilities. The latter are the result of our cognitive capacities, allowing us to adapt, on a daily basis, to a new environment.
Mind, Spirituality and Creation
The very essence of creativity is inscribed in each of us, our creative genius continues to emancipate within us, but still we must have access to it… and yet all the keys to our safe are found at most close to our being…
We can see different paths, to achieve a similar result, just like the opposite, there is no rationality when we talk about creativity, even less about who we are, or must be.
The art of prayer, meditation and anchoring…
Access to our subconscious represents a significant starting point, or even mandatory in order to begin this journey, which cannot fully begin without reaching high levels of vibration.
This ultimate source of inspiration and adaptability, an area of our mind that has more answers to our questions, is actually a reflection of our soul, conscience and our past.
People around the world regularly pray, meditate, use multiple rituals, customs; all for the sole purpose of accessing this state of hypnosis, which will lead them to their subconscious.
Indeed, when a being completely indulges in a ritual, a divinity, he enters at this moment in a state which can be scientifically perceived as a state of trans.
This state will then allow him to leave his mind, functioning past / present / future and will give him access to the present moment, without the mental filters which are generally applied to it, the perception of our reality is unique, it is the very essence of our past.
This article is not intended to give a precise, Cartesian answer, about who we really are, because there is simply none.
I humbly wrote it to provide you with food for thought, which will probably be useful to us in this period of uncertainty and isolation to which a large number of human beings do not know how to respond.
The year 2020 started in a rather special way, the coronavirus has now become the center of attention around the world, not to mention the state of the financial markets.
The information disseminated has never been so toxic, the mainstream media are once again trying to be the conductor of our thoughts and emotions.
Many countries have health security procedures in place to control the spread of the coronavirus and go as far as confining their citizens.
What are we going to become ?
So what to do ? Turn on the TV and regularly find out about the next events? Consult his Facebook wall, Instagram, the latest tweets to find out what our next day will be like ?
Human beings are curious in nature, engineers working on social networks understand this very well, they are working to make these platforms particularly addictive.
Several studies demonstrate the harmfulness of these platforms and this is not getting better, this inventory is probably an alarming finding, but as much to be realistic …
Faced with all this anxiety-provoking information, this incessant media noise, what can we do?
Our primary instinct, this element that we lose over time in our civilized societies, is it not currently overused?
Besides, do you know the main life goals of a human being? It’s a good question…
Survive and reproduce, moreover our consumer society is based solely on these two factors.
The essence of this article is to defuse the bomb that you were currently preparing in the back of your mind …
What should I do ?
The one and only thing that has always triumphed in this world remains Love and Faith.
Now is the time to focus on these key factors in the development of a human being.
Indeed, nothing can replace our feelings of love, kindness, gratitude, tenderness, we are dedicated to love, help and share with those around us. Take back control of our lives, our mind above all, it remains the centerpiece of our well-being.
A mental imbalance cannot be filled with a massive dose of anxiety-provoking information, harmful to humans.
Let us not forget that we have the capacity to capture the vibrations of our environment, these can come from sounds, words, images…
They all have the same characteristic, that of generating emotions, pleasant or not.
Height gain is so beneficial
This step back is now vital, the ultra-connected world in which we bathe daily, the speed at which information is conveyed, can quickly affect our mind and our emotions.
Disconnecting from all these sources of information interfering with our natural functioning is an essential thing, which I advise you to do as soon as possible.
Returning to simple, natural things is the key to psychological and physiological balance.
There is no difference, only Love
In this world, there are multiple profiles of people, atheists, practitioners of different religions, but one thing connects them all, their heart and their faith.
Life is not just a series of Cartesian events, it is above all an adventure, a spiritual and intellectual journey that makes us unique.
So do we love as we are, no matter our skin color, our social status, our religious affiliation…
This situation is an extraordinary moment allowing us to express our love on a daily basis, our love for life quite simply.
The whole world is panicking over the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), we are now talking about a pandemic and this ambient psychosis does not really help your daily life.
In view of this context, I wanted to share with you elements of understanding on the protection of this virus.
The main objective is to calm your mind by bringing you several elements allowing you to gain confidence in yourself.
This article will help you strengthen your immune system, an essential part of your body that will protect you from many other things as well.
Important: This is a sharing of information that can probably help you and your loved ones. However I point out that this article is only informative and that the elements which it contains must be treated thus and do not replace in any case the follow-up of a doctor.
During this one I will approach different subjects that you may not be familiar with, the objective being to get straight to the point, I will let you do your own research in order to clarify them …
I made sure to popularize, as much as possible, the technical side so that it is easily understandable by the majority of the population.
If you liked this article, share it with as many people as possible, by any means, the world needs this kind of critical information.
Take care of yourself and your loved ones, Maxime Froget
What is a virus ?
Viruses are microscopic infectious agents made up of genetic material (DNA or RNA) surrounded by a protective envelope.
Viruses can only reproduce in host cells (infected cells).
Having no system to ensure their own replication, they use the resources of the cells they parasite. For this reason, they are generally considered not to be alive.
The cell executes the genetic program of the virus: it thus reproduces the latter in numerous copies which can leave this cell to infect new ones.
Wearing a paper mask cannot really protect a human being and replace his immune system.
In fact, most of our immune system is made up of mucous membranes, which are the surface of our skin, our bronchi, our intestines.
This system is made up of microbes, bacteria and fungi which protect us from external bodies which may or may not enter our bodies.
Why is our immune system no longer protecting us as before ?
Since the growth of the vaccination system, by dint of vaccinating more people, we have been selecting viral and bacterial strains.
Doing so does not allow our bodies to express their full potential for protection, effectively it will respond to a specific need for protection and will therefore adapt less to changes.
The same is true for antibiotics.
Observation on our environment
Being in a constantly sanitizing environment cannot allow our immune system to express its full potential, microbes, bacteria being an integral part of our being.
In addition, vaccination, the use of antibiotics, creates increasingly powerful sources of microbes, which are now spreading at great speed.
The adaptive capacity of our body is therefore weakened by these factors, coupled with constant stress, exhaustion, a diet low in micronutrients, this cocktail may not be beneficial for our immune system in the long term.
How to protect our body ?
As you will understand, the immune system is the key to protecting our body, so take care of it.
You will find below some elements that I can advise you to strengthen it:
First of all I specify that this article the following information must be treated in an informative way and does not replace in any case the follow-up of a doctor.
Limit direct contacts
Goodbye to handshakes, hugs and the like, not knowing the current state of your immune system, I prefer to warn you.
Reduce your stress level
When faced with a potential danger, a stress reaction, a defense mechanism, is triggered in your body, called flight.
First of all, norepinephrine and adrenaline, stress hormones, will quickly spread.
Then cortisol, made by the adrenal glands, is secreted by the body.
In the event that your daily life comes down to a series of stressful actions, that you experience this sensation, then your body will secrete cortisol constantly.
This will lead to a chronic increase in cortisol levels, causing serious health concerns with it.
Chronic increases in cortisol levels may be linked to compromised immune functions, hypertension, insomnia, heart disease and obesity.
For this I advise you to turn off your TV, most of the information that is broadcast there is anxiety-provoking and will not bring you anything good in this kind of situation. However, you can always consult the news briefly on the internet to keep yourself informed of the situation.
Wear a mask in very polluted cities and places
Fine particles (PM2.5), which are particularly present in the air of big cities, represent a real danger for human beings.
The air we breathe in is filtered through the nose, which only retains particles larger than 10 microns (10 thousandths of a millimeter). The others arrive in the bronchi which defend themselves by producing an excess of mucus. A feeling of irritation, coughing intended to reject the viscous liquid can then appear.
As a precautionary measure, I advise you, if you are in a big city, to equip yourself with a mask in order to filter fine particles (PM2.5) when you go outside your home. There are also electronic boxes for measuring the level of fine particles.
For information, in healthy people, the immune system quickly neutralizes these deposits and removes them from the lungs.
Limit exposure to electromagnetic waves
5G has arrived in several countries in the world, we already know the impact of electromagnetic waves on humans, this new technological advance is not without consequences for our body.
Electromagnetic waves stress our bodies and weaken our immune system. In order not to further weaken your immune system.
In order to preserve you I advise you:
To stop wifi at home when you do not have the utility.
Use the airplane mode of your phone when it is in your pocket.
When you need to call someone, use a wired handsfree or your phone’s speaker.
Avoid using bluetooth equipment (connected watch, headsets, headphones, etc.) for an extended period of time.
Keep in mind that 100 wifi hotspots at a distance of 500m will be less harmful to you than a hotspot 2 meters from you.
Scientists at the University of Southern California (USC) say this and this discovery is particularly awaited by patients with weakened immune systems, including cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Valter Longo, professor of gerontology and biological sciences at the USC School of Gerontology Davis explains:
Fasting gives the green light to stem cells to activate and begin to proliferate until they rebuild the entire immune system.
And the other good news: the body gets rid of old, damaged and ineffective parts during the fast.
If you start from an immune system that is badly damaged by chemotherapy or aging, fasting cycles can literally generate a new immune system.
So “nothing simpler”, if you are already used to fasting for more than 24 hours of course …
Otherwise I advise you to proceed step by step, increasingly intermittent fasting, then fasting for a day, two days, do not hesitate to consult a specialist for this.
2 – According to this article which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Rafael de Cabo and Mark Mattson reviewed several fasting strategies that have been tested in recent years.
The news continues to be very positive, intermittent fasting would also allow you to regenerate your immune system, here are two types of fasting that you can practice:
Daily: For example, lunch from 12 noon and finish dinner at 8 p.m. so that you can fast overnight at noon (4 p.m. fast).
2 times a week: Fast for 24 hours for 2 days a week and eat normally the other 5 days.
Resting is essential, effectively, without a battery your vehicle will not be able to move very far and your immune system needs this rest to regenerate.
Indeed, during this period, the brain secretes hormones that help the immune system to fight against viral and bacterial infections.
Optimize your sleep by using:
Sleep in a completely dark room, you should not be able to see your hand if you place it in front of your face.
Wear a sleep mask.
Use hearing protection.
Keep at least 1 meter away from your bed all kinds of elements generating electromagnetic waves (telephone, bedside lamp, socket outlet, …).
Activate airplane mode on your phone (deactivate gps, bluetooth and wifi).
Don’t charge your phone next to your bed.
Meditate 10 min before going to bed.
Use blue anti-light glasses, those with orange lenses, at least 2 hours before going to bed. This will allow your stock of melatonin (sleep hormone) to be optimal to quickly reach a deep sleep and therefore more restful.
Nourish its bacterial flora
Have a massive supply of micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, trace elements).
To do so, I advise you to consume more fruits and vegetables in the raw state and without cooking.
I will not support all the nutritional part in this article, but know that cooking, beyond 90 °, destroys a large part of the micronutrients, essential elements for the optimal functioning of our body and immune system.
Not to mention the presence of Maillard molecules that the cooking process will create. Maillard molecules are insoluble bodies created when a mixture of sugar and protein is heated to more than 60 °.
I recommend the use of soft cooking such as steam, poached, water bath, low temperature oven.
Daily intake of vitamin D
Vitamin D plays an essential role for our protection, indeed it will activate our immune system, through T lymphocytes, cells of immunity, which are responsible for killing bacteria and viruses.
Exposure to the sun on as much surface as possible, in fact the greater the surface not covered by a garment, the more your thyroid gland will be able to synthesize this vitamin.
If you are in a country where the sun is currently not very present I advise you to take a vitamin D supplement.
You can also eat the following foods: cod liver oil, herring, mackerel, sardines, salmon, tuna, dark chocolate (minimum 40%), raw egg yolk, mushroom.
Reduce / stop your sugar intake
The following study clearly shows the correlation between the level of blood sugar and the rate of infection with the influenza virus.
To summarize, the more you have high glucose levels in your body, the more you will be prey to viruses.
Few viruses can develop in an environment low in glucose, a ketogenic diet will be the most suitable to reach this stage. For this I advise you to be accompanied.
Faced with media propaganda, with information always as anxiety-provoking, many people find themselves panicking, which is a plague on our immune system.
This article is intended to be able to help the greatest number of people.
Keep in mind that prevention is the best way to protect yourself.
I hope you find this information understandable and useful. Now you have the keys that will allow you to be more serene for the future.
If you liked this article, share it with as many people as possible, by any means, the world needs this kind of critical information.
Stay calm, everything will be fine.
Take care of yourself and your loved ones, Maxime Froget
Yes it is quite possible to manage its employees, providers, without stress and without feeling waves of emotions of all kinds…
THAT WAS BEFORE !
As I write this article, I remember my first steps as a computer engineer, I worked for large groups. At that time I was not yet practicing all this science, which now accompanies me every day and I can tell you that it makes a big difference (mental clarity, calm, focus, productivity …).
My days were more and more exhausting, my ability to focus on the essentials became more and more critical for my productivity, my recurring nods, my bad mood … What a plague! But when I think about it I did well to go through this step, it now allows me to see things from a different angle. 🙂
Indeed, nothing is due to chance in this world, if you wish to obtain a clear mind, sharpened like a razor blade, it will be necessary to work and not to go against what you live, because it is the very essence of your destiny.
As The Prayer of Serenity says so well: God, give me the grace to accept things that cannot be changed with serenity, the courage to change those that should be changed and the wisdom to know the difference.
Alone we go faster, with others we go further, YES, but under the condition of being aligned. Be already aligned with yourself, then with your partners, this will avoid future quarrels.
HOW TO REFOCUS?
It’s very simple, the evidence of simple things often seems complicated to us… 😉
– First step: Take a deep breath, you’re alive, the birds are chirping!
Start by using cardiac coherence methods, it’s a good place to start. For this you can breathe in counting to 5 and breathe out in the same interval.
I recommend you Kardia Deep Breathing (IOS – Android)
– Second step: Include a 10-minute meditation session upon waking and / or in the evening, before going to bed.
We do not control our mind, if you are not already experienced, I challenge you to close your eyes and focus only on your breath, you will see that after a few minutes your mind will take over in you making us think of things from the past, the future and the “modern” environment in which we live only amplifies this imbalance.
I recommend the following applications: – Free: Headspace (IOS – Android) – Paid: Calm (IOS – Android)
To live a deep meditation experience, you can consult the article that I made following the Vipassana meditation retreat.
– Third step: Change your eating habits, our digestive system is connected to our brain via the vagus nerve.
It’s like you’re playing with a puppet, pulling on her strings to make a face or rather a big smile. Everything we eat affects our brains, the way our digestive system works too, take care of it… I will cover this part in more detail in a future article.
These elements constitute a good starting point so that your body / mind are more appeased, this state will allow you to act in a more framed way while having this essential flexibility which allows healthy human exchanges and favorable to development.
In this article I’m gonna share you a unique and exceptional experience, the Vipassana meditation retreat.
I experimented this during 10 days in Burma, for 10 hours meditation a day, 100 hour in total.
LISTEN THE PODCAST
Press the orange button.
WHAT IS VIPASSANA ?
It’s a meditation technique, one of the oldest in India, used by Siddhartha Gautama 2,500 years ago to reach enlightenment.
Vipassana means to see things as they really are and not as we would like them to be.
This technique, non-sectarian, is a real art of living with the aim of eradicating all mental impurities and achieving the true happiness that results.
During these 10 days, I followed the teaching of SN. Goenka who has spent his life teaching and spreading this technique in countries around the world and especially in France.
The follow-up of this teaching is free, all the expenses (housing, food) being covered by the donations and by the generosity of the volunteers.
I learned the teaching of the Dhamma, this way is the universal law, the law of nature. It consists of 3 pillars that were taught to me during these 10 days:
– Sīla : Morality
These are the 5 precepts to respect: do not kill any living creature, do not steal, do not have drifting sexual practice, do not lie and have bad thoughts / words, do not consume intoxicants (alcohol, drugs, …).
– Samādhi : Concentration of the mind
Here we learn to sharpen our mind like a razor blade with a cutting edge more and more accurate. For this, we use Anapana meditation which consists of focusing on his breath, on a smaller and smaller area.
– Paññā : Wisdom, spirit purification at the deepest level
It is developed through the practice of meditation, the observation of our bodily sensations from head to feet.
This is why Vipassana exist, to practice seeing reality as it is, observing our bodily sensations, our breathing, with all equanimity.
Indeed, since our youngest age we react to different situations of life in many ways. If this situation is pleasant we will bring attachment, pleasure and sometimes addiction. On the other hand, if this situation is unpleasant, we will run away from it, experience pain, fear.
Whereas everything in our world is impermanent (Annicca in Pali). Indeed, we live, we die, like everything that surrounds and composes us. We are composed of the same elements present in nature, water, earth, air and fire.
Moreover, by using a microscope, by zooming more on our skin for example, we find that what we perceive with our eyes, is only a set of molecules that live and die at every moment, the impermanence in the pure state.
If we learn to observe reality as it is, by observing our impermanent bodily sensations and training our mind not to react if these sensations are pleasant or not, in time we deliver our spirit from our deep-seated sufferings (Saṃskāra in Pali) and we do not generate new ones every day.
I wanted to understand more about how our mind works, how to control it, purify it, learn and understand new things.
Having already learned about hygienism, how our body works, how to feed it so that it works optimally, how to protect ourselves from the poisons of our modern society, how to cure our symptoms in a natural way without disturbing the laws of the living.
Vipassana’s teaching in addition to my knowledge of hygienism allows me to have an understanding of the human being as a whole.
– Second reason : in my activity context.
Throughout this experience, I hung in difficult moments thinking of my current customers and future people that I could help with my knowledge. Actually as a life coach, I have to develop his perseverance skills in order to always take care of my customers.
– Third reason : I no longer believe in chance.
When I left France for Thailand, in February 2019, my ambition was to hold a meditation retreat for a few days in a monastery in Thailand, in order to understand more about the monastic life and to go out once again my comfort zone.
Chance always doing things well… The person who was close to me on the plane to go to Thailand told me about this meditation technique, he also realized two retreats of 10 days in 6 last months in Thailand. When I was in Chiang Mai, a French entrepreneur friend, Fabien Delcourt, was also going to realize this great experience, it reinforced my choice and motivated me more than ever. This friend has also done a Vipassana podcast, he makes more podcast on the business, the mindset, I strongly encourage you to follow him, I will put you the link of his podcast in description. Currently his podcasts are only in French langage.
A yes I was going to forget, importantly, we often have to book 3-4 months in advance this kind of meditation retreat, I had to leave Thailand for visa reasons, you can not stay more than 6 months in the country, you must then leave the country and return by air. Coming soon to 6 months, I had the choice to go to Laos or Burma, the two closest countries to Chiang Mai. Laos does not currently have any Vipassana centers, I had the choice of Burma, where a miracle 10 days retreat was going to take place in a week and a half and there were still places available for new meditators, my Vipassana adventure began at this moment.
Some small anecdotes:
Two days before leaving the hostel where I was staying in Chiang Mai to go to Burma, one of the employees had shown me a live ceremony from Bangkok where the King of Thailand was rewarding the most famous Vipassana monks.
I met one of the meditators of this Vipassana retreat, 5 days before the beginning of the internship in Yangon in Burma, I was about to leave Chiang Mai by bus, arrived in the waiting area, as often a lot of people were focus on their phones, it was the only person to look away with a quite remarkable concentration. So I naturally asked him if he was going to follow a meditation retreat, it was the case and in addition to the same place as me, we made exactly the same trip at the same time…
HOW DID THESE 10 DAYS GO ?
I did these 10 days at the Dhamma Joti Meditation Center in Yangon, in Burma.
Here is the schedule I followed during this retreat :
Morning wake up
Meditation in the hall or in his room
Group meditation in the lobby
Meditation in the hall or in his room according to the instructions of the teacher
Rest and interview with the teacher
Meditation in the hall or in his room
Group meditation in the lobby
Meditation in the hall or in his room according to the instructions of the teacher
Group meditation in the lobby
Teacher’s speech in the hall
Group meditation in the lobby
Period for questions in the hall
To retire to his room. Turn off lights
As well as the rules that I had to respect in the center:
Do not speak (noble silence) Do not cross the look of other meditators Do not use phone, computer Do not read, write
And the precepts :
All those taking a Vipassana course must conscientiously commit to the following five precepts for the duration of the course:
1. Refrain from killing any living creature; 2. Refrain from stealing; 3. Refrain from any sexual activity; 4. Refrain from lying; 5. Refrain from any intoxicants.
Old students (those who have already taken a course with S.N. Goenka or one of his assistants) are expected to observe three additional precepts:
6. Refrain from taking food after noon; 7. Refrain from any sensory distraction, makeup and clothing; 8. Refrain from using high or luxurious beds.
In the same way as fasting for the body, the fasting of the spirit can only be achieved by stopping all new entries in our minds.
I made sure to remember me the main points in order to count you this exceptional experience that I lived this year 2019.
I take a taxi from my hostel and go to the Dhamma Joti center in the north of Yangon, I start to realize more and more that the time has come for me to experience this adventure.
I register at the office, put my valuables in a locker, my phone and my wallet are deposited in a special pocket, in exchange I am given a number that I should carefully keep, this number is 47. Interesting in numerology, I realize that 47, 4 + 7 = 11, this number is sacred it symbolizes energy and spiritual awakening, it starts well.
I enter the part of the center where I will make this retreat and discover a pleasant place, peaceful, the vegetation is lush, but the place is very wet, there are many mosquitoes.
I discover my room, we are two per room, the comfort is basic but it will be enough for me, still having the right to speak I take this moment to learn more about my neighbors.
My roommate is an Argentinian, he has half shaved head, this is the first time I see a person with a haircut like that, I do not judge him, but it’s still the only person having a physical appearance as original of all meditators.
I meet other meditators, there are people from all around the world: Ireland, China, United Kingdom, Argentina, Switzerland, Italy, California, Spain, France (a French from Lyon, the city where I live and where I am born) and 3/4 of Burmese.
We are in total 120 people, men and women are separated for all the moments.
I keep with me a bottle of water that was given to me by a volunteer, on the label it is written “Life for Life”, significant enough, even more in an internship like this one.
There is a big reverse osmosis water filtration system at the entrance to the Dhamma Hall, I smiled, this reminds me of the system I used in my apartment.
We take the first meal all together, we discuss, get to know each other, then we attend SN Goenka’s introductory speech in the Dhamma Hall, this place is loaded with positive energy, actually so many meditators have come through here, I feel a sense of calm.
The Dhamma Hall floor is carpeted, before entering we must leave our flip flops, the name of each of us is written on a floor label in front of each traditional meditation cushion. This room is huge, really, at the moment when the professor made his entrance, the young Burmese begin to bow on their knees, making touching their foreheads against the ground, he bows three times, a mark of respect towards him.
I set up the little alarm clock I bought in Yangon for tomorrow’s alarm clock.
Day 1 It is 4 o’clock, I hear the beep of my alarm clock, and the gong, it’s nice this noise, really, I decided to shift the time of my alarm clock 5min, in case in the next days my alarm clock could not wake me.
4:30 am, the time of the first meditation in the Dhamma hall, next to me is the only French guy from Lyon and a Switzerland guy from Geneva.
We begin by practicing Anapana, we must focus on our breath, given the early hour, I’m relaxed enough, but I admit it’s hard to focus on my breath, my mind is thinking about past and future things.
It is difficult for me to sit for a long time, it’s only been two hours and I already feel pain in the back, it starts well.
The first songs of Goenka are quite disturbing, I did not expect at all that. From 9 to 11h, I decided to go to meditate in my room, my neighbor had the same idea, I said to me : “Maxime you rest 5-10min and then you meditate in a sitting position”, finally I fell asleep, my neighbor too , the 11h gong wakes up us.
In the restaurant too we each have our position, I eat in front of a white wall, I start to analyze the people eating. When I eat I feel my chewing, the fact of not talking and focus on the present moment makes me perceive feelings that were unknown to me until now.
The day passes, the return to my room is a little weird, I walk close to my roommate without being able to talk to him, we take our shower one by one.
Day 2 I think of my dear ones, we continue the Anapana meditation, this time we have to focus our attention on the entrance of the nose.
I feel pain in the legs, my mind is a little less dispelled.
During the day, I share the tiger balm I bought in Yangon with my neighbors, French and Swiss, they appreciate this attention.
At 5pm we can drink a ginger tea at the restaurant, palm sugars are also available.
Since 4-5 days I did not go to the bathroom, I begin to realize that I will have to find a solution.
In the night I wake up at 1:30 in the morning with intense pain in the intestines, I can not go back to sleep.
Day 3 4am, I hear the gong, I only slept 3h, the pain is still intense, I get up I explain the situation to the volunteers and go back to sleep a few hours.
On the way back the pains become stronger, my head starts to spin, I sit, take my breath and slowly return to my room.
I think I’m at the limit of bowel obstruction, I do not have castor oil to purge me and my condition does not allow me to go to ask a laxative.
I ate a rather spicy dish the day before to create a stir in my intestine, that’s what happens but nothing comes out, the sensations are more and more unpleasant, fever rises and persists.
I start going to the bathroom around noon, what a relief !
I think that changing the environment and being in such a new situation for me, plus focusing on my breath, completely blocked my digestive processes.
The fever as for it continues, I must have more than 40 °, I can not get out of my bed. Volunteers come to check my health, I explain that I need a cloth soaked with water and ice to put on my forehead. There is no ice in the center, one of the volunteers brings me a bottle of ice water.
The fever is so strong and constant that I suspect dengue, there are so many mosquitoes here…
My neighbor comes back from classes, organizes all his things to change rooms, the organizers do not prefer to take risks, as I understand, before leaving he looks at me and gives me a big smile of compassion.
The end of the afternoon approaches, my fever begins to fall, I would stay almost 10 hours with a fever bedrock, what a story.
I decided to get up and go listen to Goenka’s speech the day before, actually there was a problem with my headphones and I could not listen properly.
One of the volunteers who helped me in my room, even bordered me, brings me bananas with bread and jam, I thank him but I can not eat, my health is still complicated to manage, I feel nauseous and I do not want to eat. I leave this food in my room.
I talk with the teacher and explain what happened, he said « You are a life coach, you must be strong and stay. » I approve his words, but even with all the will of the world, with such a fever, it was impossible for me to do my best. I explain that I am a fighter and nothing can stop me, I will do my best to return as soon as possible. I ask the professor that I am served ginger tea and lemon squeezed in a glass of fresh water, I know what I must do to help my body with natural cures.
I go to the restaurant to drink this, on the return it is almost impossible for me to walk, I think the lemon has an effect on my liver, I have no energy to carry my legs, I have to sit down and regain strength every 20m.
I can reach the Dhamma hall where I will stay a few hours until the end of the day, we continue Anapana practice, today we must focus on a small area under the nose and feel the air passed on. I feel very tired but the meditation allows me to relax and focus my attention to positive things.
I will have fasted all day, I remember the volunteers who came to see me several times a day, help me, what a story, I go to bed saying that tomorrow I would be present again at all courses, fever is no longer present.
Day 4 The gong sounds, 4am, I still feel bloated, I go to the bathroom several times before classes start.
Today is the first day of the Vipassana meditation technique, I decide to completely resume the lessons despite my condition which is still a bit fragile.
Today we no longer analyze our breath but our bodily sensations from the bottom of our nose to the top of our head.
The day is long to pass because I have little strength, but I hang on.
I decided not to go to the 5pm break, and to take advantage of this time to rest in my room.
In the evening, after SN Goenka’s daily teaching hour, I always enjoy this moment, it’s a kind of learning of the essential things in life that allow me to understand more about what I surrounds me and on past events of my life.
In order to change my mind, I clean part of my bathroom, the sink was really dirty, I also wash my clothes, I start again on a good base.
Day 5 I wear the traditional Burmese longyi, it is a set of several pieces of fabric knotted together, serving as both pants, belt, or towel. Some women even use it as a baby carrier or a bag, so many ways to use it! The longyi can be of many colors, but is usually quite dark, in shades of blue, purple or red, and is worn by the whole family.
So I wear longyi as pants with a shirt, I bought these clothes for the occasion, in a small market in Yangon.
Volunteers see me coming, I’m dressed in traditional dress, they appreciate, they tell me I’m look nice with big smiles.
Today we must focus our attention on the whole body, from head to feet, side to side. I feel a big energy, I feel more flexible.
I’m going to break my 48 hour fasting, when I go back to the restaurant I see a beetle sitting on my shirt, I do not chase it, this is a sign, as you may know it’s the sign of the resurrection.
At the lunch time my sensations are increased tenfold, meditation and calm make me feel intense sensations.
I thank the volunteers by joining my hands, I express a deep compassion for this moment.
New rules are now in place, we must practice meditation “strong determination” (adhiṭṭhāna in Pali), it is a meditation of one hour where we are in lotus position and must make sure not to move. We will do this three times a day, in the morning, at the beginning of the afternoon and at the end of the day. On a sign I see a definition of this meditation, it is also explained that the goal is not to torture us, but to progress internally, if we had to move due to sensations really too unpleasant, not to lament and try to reduce the number of changes position little by little.
The time has come to realize this meditation, I am determined not to move whatever happens, I condition myself like a lion, I am on the starting line of a long race, I will not crack. The hour passes with difficulty, arrived 30-40min, I feel intense sensations in the groin and knees, but I can manage, the end of the meditation is a real deliverance for meditators, 5 minutes break, to walk with difficulty and drink a well deserved glass of water.
Like every night, we listen to Goenka’s speech about life, always very inspiring.
I sleep only 3 hours, I feel a great power in me.
Day 6 C’est toujours un plaisir d’entendre le gong, je sors plus tôt de mon chalet et marche avant le début des méditations.
I feel like a monk, with my traditional outfit, the longyi. The fact also to greet with a nod, hands joined at each entry into the Dhamma hall the volunteer who stays posted to welcome us before each meditation, in this exceptional place, these are unique moments, really.
Today we will focus on the sensations from head to feet, scanning our body on both sides at the same time, I feel a little more my bodily sensations, as well as more subtle vibrations.
There are only 5 days left, or 50 hours of meditation. 😀
I remove the cushion that held my back.
During breakfast, I always analyze the habits of other meditators, they mostly eat sandwich bread containing gluten and being very sweet. They eat their fruits last, while by the time all the ingested food is digested, a lot of the vitamins and minerals in the fruits will not be absorbed by the body, because of the body heat.
I use the tiger balm again because I feel intense sensations in my legs. Some new students are gone, we call old students those who have already followed this 10 days retreat.
After each hour of meditation without moving, the 5 minutes of break are a real deliverance, it is however not much thing, to walk, drink water, but when one feels sensations as intense, that one has the impression of being a true slave, I assure you that these small moments of break are very appreciable.
Day 7 Today is a symbolic day, the famous figure 7, this figure that has so many meanings, including the 7 human chakras, for Egyptians this figure symbolizes eternal life.
The meditations today will be focused on the analysis of our feelings, from head to feet and feet to head, we also use the free flow, a flow sweeping the whole body in a fast way and specifies at a time.
I decide to remove a meditation cushion, I have only one large square cushion and a small rectangular cushion folded in two on which I sit. Being lower gives me even more intense sensations, in the groin and knees, I still continue to hold the meditation for an hour without moving, despite my feelings.
The new meditators can now meditate alone, we go to the temple located at the top of the center, it’s a large circular room, divided into several small spaces, one of the volunteers shows me my room in the temple, it must be 4 m2, I really feel like a monk, the places are so full of history, I really feel in another world.
During periods of classical meditation, where we can move, I put myself very little in the position of the lotus, I save my body for the 3 meditations without movements.
As soon as I can I take breaks to sleep 30-45 min, I feel that my body needs it.
After the evening meditation of “strong determination”, during the 5min break, I will walk a little behind the Dhamma hall, I see on the lotus flower fields bright flying insects, I had never seen this before, only in some animation movies, it looks like a dream really.
I express a lot of compassion for my family, my friends, I understand more and more their reactions, their suffering.
Day 8 I put my alarm clock earlier, 3:45am, I’m up and ready to live this experience fully.
Today, we will focus on internal bodily sensations from head to feet and from feet to head.
I feel more intense sensations, this surgery of my mind surprises me day by day, I am really experiencing unique moments in my life.
It remains now 3 days, the time passes more and more quickly now, a certain routine was put in place.
I appreciate the moments in the individual rooms, I told myself that there are only two days left to continue cleaning my mind. Indeed, on the tenth day, we will again have permission to speak, so that the return to active life is not too disturbing.
The Swiss guy close to me leaves the center, a pity I would have liked to know more, I express compassion for this person.
It is always a pleasure to eat this vegetarian food, the flavors are truly exceptional.
I feel that my posture is becoming more straight, my breathing and my breath is improving.
Day 9 I always wake up at 3:45am, I feel that my body needs less rest, the morning walk is a good habit to start the day of meditation.
Today, we are again analyzing our inner bodily sensations from head to feet and from feet to head.
The hours of meditation follow one another, habits are there.
Day 10 It is the famous day so long awaited, I will finally be able to exchange with the other meditators.
We analyze our body as the day before, however today we are learning Meta meditation, this meditation is about kindness, it is a way to share our well-being, happiness, energy to the world, so that people are delivered from their sufferings and also reach levels of consciousness allowing them to achieve full happiness. The teacher tells us that after each meditation session of 1 hour without moving, it is strongly recommended to meditate 5 minutes using this technique, to share our test also, all this positive energy to the service of others.
At 11am for lunch time, we can finally talk again, I get to know many people, everyone is unanimous this experience is unique and the most beautiful of our lives.
I meet people with different profiles, entrepreneurs, employees, student working on a vacation / work visa abroad, a Harvard architecture student.
It’s a deliverance for us, the real smiles are really beautiful to see, as well as everyone’s laughter.
I explain to my French friend the health problem that I met and why I could not be present for a day.
I completely clean my bathroom, it was really dirty, there were traces of mold on the walls, I told myself that the next meditators will be delighted to enter a bathroom as clean.
I store my stuff, get my phone and wallet with the famous number 47. 😉
As a reminder, in numerology, 47 = 4 + 7 = 11, this number is sacred, it symbolizes energy and spiritual awakening.
I give a wooden watch of my Infiny Wood brand to each person who came to help me when I was sick. The simplicity and kindness of the Burmese really touches me. The two men are surprised and each of them gives me something in exchange later. A T-shirt to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Vipassana Meditation Center and a traditional sling pouch, both featuring the famous Dhamma Wheel. I thought to buy them, so I would not need to spend money on that and could give more money for my donation. One of the two volunteers shows me my wrist and says: “But you do not have a watch anymore?” At that moment he wanted to give me his own watch, I explain to him that I have several models in my bag.
Day 11 It the departure day, this experience was long, painful, but has brought me so much. As always, when a situation is difficult to live in life we learn a lot, what a life lesson !
We spend the last hours meditating, we do a Meta meditation, the atmosphere is really unique and charged with positive waves, more than 100 human beings are spreading love, kindness at this moment, it’s really beautiful.
The teacher explains that in the same way that a physical training for our body, our spirit must be regularly trained in order to develop its capacities, its wisdom, for this he advises us to meditate 1h the morning and 1h the evening by using the Vipassana method “strong determination” and add 5 minutes of Meta meditation at the end of each session.
Jeremy the French guy coming from Lyon explains to me that he was professional footballer before and that he felt more difficulties to follow this meditation retreat than his trainings. We talk about our respective situations, he explains me run several companies, have more money, but now he really wants to enjoy the present moment.
Indeed, we can not predict anything in this world, everything is impermanent, our whole body is in constant change. We also talk about our previous love relationships, we are unanimous on the fact that a passionate love is not the solution and brings a deep suffering following the events, to have more compassion for his / her partner seems to us more appropriate now.
I take advantage of this free time to talk with other people, having already been in Boston we talk about the Harvard campus with the student in architecture, he explains the life of the campus. I talk with people who have already done Iron Man (big triathlon), they tell me that Vipassana is in mind what the Iron Man is to the body, they advise me to try this experience.
We take group photos with the girls, who for the first time can be close to us, we were separated during the whole retreat.
It’s time to leave this atypical place, charge energy and positive emotions, I share a taxi with Thomas the New Zealander I met in Chiang Mai on the waiting area of the buses.
BACK TO CIVILIZATION
The return to classical life is weird, I had lost the habit of hearing so many noises, people talk to each other, live.
I arrive at my hostel, once the check-in is done, they show me my bed, my roommate is from India and is a teacher of Vipassana, the famous coincidences.
I use my phone, it’s really weird to use a touch screen, I see things in slow motion. I turn on my laptop and I do a big cleaning in my mails, I unsubscribe to many newsletters.
I take the time to go to the park, to walk in the street, to observe.
I realize my first meditation alone in my bed, I use my pillow as a meditation cushion, I feel intense sensations.
THE NEXT DAYS
I wake up at 4:30am, I meditate from 5am to 6am then going back to sport, after 10 days break, I am delighted to resume this routine. I do a street workout at the park located 5 minutes walk from my hostel, I feel good feelings during training, I live once again.
I am begin to write the important points that I am going to share from this experience, these 10 unique and so beneficial days must be shared with the greatest number of people.
I feel that my work capacity has clearly increased, I am completely focused on what I am doing.
In the afternoon, I go back to the park to continue writing all that I experienced during this experiment, two Burmese students approach me and ask me if we can speak English together, after 10 minutes they propose me follow them in their school, I spend 3 hours talking with forty students.
The opportunity for me to learn more about Burmese culture, I really like the sharing of cultures, simple and authentic moments.
At the end of the day the teacher invites me to come back the next day, he wants to offer me a traditional breakfast with the students.
The next day at 9:30am I’m at school, I bring bananas for students. The teacher this time gives me a microphone, I introduce myself and answer the students questions, the opportunity for me to share their keys of understanding from Vipassana and my past experiences, this knowledge can help them later, one more good time spent in this school.
In total I spent about ten hours with students during three days, on my last day in Yangon students propose to guide me to visit their city, we go to different markets and temples, it was a unique moment of sharing.
WHAT CHANGES HAVE I SEEN SINCE THE END OF THIS RETREAT ?
I feel a certain overall well-being, my mind is much less agitated than before, when I’m doing something I’m completely present, talking with someone, writing, reading, thinking, I’m fully focused on the present moment and my capacity for work is increasing from days to days. I also sleep less than before, the fact of reaching faster a deep sleep is a significant factor.
Although some changes can be felt after this retreat, 10 days are only an introduction to this art of living, you will need as well as for the training of your body, train your mind regularly to develop his abilities, his wisdom . We were advised to meditate 1 hour in the morning and 1 hour in the evening using the Vipassana method “strong determination” and to add 5 minutes of Meta meditation at the end of each session. It’s up to you to compose with your schedule, even if you can only do 30 minutes per session, it’s always better than nothing.
Keep in mind that every day you feel emotions, have thoughts, feel sensations, these meditations will be a tool allowing you to no longer have a dispelled mind, to free you from your suffering rooted deep in your mind and to be able to control your mind when an intense emotion impacts you, it is a sacred ally for the life.
WHAT I COULD RECOMMEND TO YOU
Just to try it out, it’s totally free, there are centers all around the world, just plan it a little in advance, there are often 3-4 months of waiting. Learning Vipassana meditation technique is done in 10 days, it is the minimum required to understand all the basics.
If you want to live a traditional experience, out of the ordinary, I highly recommend this center, it is one of the first centers of Vipassana meditation in Burma that was founded by S.N Goenka in 1993.
It is not necessary to have done hours of meditation before, I met several people who had never meditated. For my part I meditated since 2018 for 10 minutes a day, which is tiny contribution to the 10 hours daily.
Tips : Think of buying a big pot of red tiger balm, to wear loose clothes, the longyi is for me by far the most comfortable. Take a little digital alarm clock with you (you will not have a noise problem like that).
It only remains for you to try now, I guarantee you, really, it is for me the most beautiful gift that you can do to you. We are too much habit of trying to change things outside while if we do not change anything inside ourselves, we will remain a prisoner for life of our inner sufferings and slave to our spirit.
To conclude, this Vipassana meditative retreat experience has been without doubt the most beautiful experience of my life. As always in life, the most complex situations to live are those that bring us the most benefits. Today I can only approve this art of living and recommend it to the greatest number to help simply.
MAY ALL BEINGS BE HAPPY
« May all suffering beings in the world understand the Dhamma, may they practice the Dhamma,can they implement the Dhamma in their daily life and get out of all the anxieties of an impure spirit, full of negativities. May all enjoy the peace and harmony of a pure spirit, of a spirit full of compassionate love and kindness towards other beings. » – S.N. Goenka –