friends ask, what do you do in the retreat? i say, we sit and be quiet. that simple. and radical too. for the most part of the two days no sooner than the facilitator says, close your eyes, than i go straight to a place of no linear time, no words, no sense of dimension. just a mass of bright serenity, joyous contentment. more often than not i experience my awareness descending at super high speed into the depths of my inner being. it's all very subtle.
there was a time when i came out of meditation upset that i missed the meditation instruction, that i must have not meditated. seriously. of course i was also upset that i didn't have any dramatic experiences. where's the light? thunder? visions? i would feel so disappointed and then envious when others described their super audio-visual experiences. not anymore. i have come to appreciate my own experiences. really. i notice there are so much less mindless wanderings. i am able to step back with ease from the tendency to worry, to project into the future. when we are chanting a long mantra praising the qualities our own true nature i actually vividly sense that yes, i am not the thoughts, feelings and emotions. my senses are open and functioning but i am not dependent on sensory pleasures for my happiness. as a matter of fact, i am happiness.
the first thing i notice at the end of the retreat is this. where is that lifelong nagging restlessness? and what about the doubting voice? i don't expect they vanish for good but i know now that they are not in the driving seat anymore.