The course was held in an ancient Tuscan farmstead. We were about seventy participants, and had to wake up at four o’ clock in the morning when it was pitch dark. The meditation was held in the hall within half an hour.
The meals were breakfast at 6 and lunch at eleven in the morning. After lunch there was nothing to eat- except some fruit- until the next day. The teacher said that the stomach should be empty to meditate well.
During the first three days we did a kind of meditation called ‘Anapana’, which consisted in watching the air passing through our nostrils.
In the evening it was possible to ask questions to the teacher. So I went to him and asked: “ I’d like to know what is the meaning of watching my breathing.”
He didn’t seem to be taken aback by my question and answered with a kind smile. “The observation of the air passing through your nostrils leads you to see the reality as it is; there is nothing more objective than air. Furthermore watching yourself in the limited area around your nostrils and upper lip sharpens your mind to observe the body sensations.
After three days of ‘Anapana’, we were taught another kind of meditation called ‘Vipassana’, based on the observation of our body. Also this time I had the opportunity of asking the teacher about this topic. “What is for?” I asked.
“Through ‘Vipassana’ you will come across the ‘Law of Impermanence’”. “All body sensations,” he continued, “ come and go; they are impermanent so as everything in human life.”
After nine days of absolute silence and meditation, we were allowed to talk to each other.
I had been ten days outside worldly life. A really unique experience! Everybody should interrupt the chain of the events that lead them here and there like leaves swept away by the wind even for a little while and watch inside themselves, so as every authentic human being should do. So I recommend meditation to everybody who lives very busily.
Ettore Grillo, author of: