Everyone should find a way to connect to their spiritual side. It can be hard to find the right method for you, but if you’re still searching, vipassana could be exactly what you need. The meditation style derives from the world of Buddhist meditation, though it has been adopted by people all over the world that have all sorts of different beliefs. Vipassana is ultimately something that can be appreciated by both newcomers to and veterans of meditation. If you’re curious to learn more about vipassana, let’s check out the basics!
What is it?
Vipassana is a type of meditation that has been around for centuries. There are a few different translations of the word vipassana, but most people understand it to mean “insight.” Vipassana meditation helps you become aware of your surroundings in a similar way to mindfulness meditation. Those who practice vipassana aim to look past all the complicated associations that we have with our environment and see things exactly as they are. It’s really not as complicated as it sounds. It mainly is just a way to become more aware of and in tune with reality, and that’s something that we can all benefit from!
Starting the journey
Many people are intimidated by meditation, and that’s fair. It seems like a difficult world to break into. But it actually isn’t all that difficult. The important thing to remember for anyone beginning to get into vipassana is that progress is slow and not always linear. Some days will feel better than others, surely. But don’t let that discourage you as you move through your meditation journey. Simply engaging in a meditative ritual like vipassana can be really beneficial as long as you stick to it and pay attention to it. You aren’t going to become a guru after a week, and that’s to be expected. Just enjoy the process and take note of all the things that you learn!
Performing Vipassana meditation
Okay, so you wanna try out vipassana for yourself. Here’s what you should do. Give yourself about 15 minutes in the morning where you don’t need to do anything (it doesn’t need to be in the morning, but that is how most people practice it). Go somewhere that is relaxing and quiet and sit down for those 15 minutes. As you’re sitting, let your body get into a comfortable position while keeping your stomach muscles tight. Start paying attention to your breathing and try to notice all the sensations and thoughts that you have. It may be hard to do this for 15 minutes without getting distracted, so you can start off even shorter if necessary.
The point of listening to your breathing is to calm down your mind so that you can become acutely aware of whatever is happening both inside your head and around you. You might notice that you’re feeling a bit anxious, angry, or anything else. If that’s the case, let yourself feel that emotion without judging yourself for it. The whole aim is to just become aware of what’s happening without attaching our own meanings to it. We live in a world where we are constantly using our minds to frame our realities, but vipassana is a way to just let it all happen around you without needing to think about it.
Vipassana transforms you from a fish fighting against the current into a rock that is in the stream. The water is still flowing over you, but you aren’t trying to fight against it. You feel the water, and it goes away. If you can master basic vipassana practices, you will slowly become a much more thoughtful and aware person.