Location: The relatively new S.N. Goenka Center is situated on a pittoresque, lush green plateau. In the background mountains are towering up in the east. The center itself is located in the central part of the 61 hectare ground, the buildings are in modern Thai-style. There are a lot of ponds, fruit trees and a bamboo wood.
Tradition: Vipassana according to U Ba Khin (Burma), S.N. Goenka Center.
Course duration and dates: Throughout the year. For beginners, a 10-day course is recommended. Timely preregistration is necessary. Timetable and application form can be ordered.
Focus: Silent retreats with intensive sitting meditation and a daily lecture.
Meditation technique and schedule: First three days Anapanasati, i.e.observation of breath. Concentrating on inhaling and exhaling. Breath is only observed, not manipulated. From day three, Vipassana meditation in the tradition of U Ba Khin. In the "step by step" or "body-sweeping“ method the bodily sensations are systematically observed. When the body is scanned from head to toe, another round is performed in the opposite direction. Sensations are not judged but only observed. The course ends with an exercise for the development of loving kindness.
Teacher and guidance: After 14 years of practice, his teacher U Ba Khin gave S.N. Goenka teaching permission in 1969. Goenkaj stems from a wealthy Indian industrial family and grew up in Burma where he was raised in the Hindu tradition. Today he lives in India. Since there are more than 50 centers world-wide which adhere to this tradition, Goenkajs instructions are presented on video or audio tape.
Language(s): Thai and English.
Food: Vegetarian. If you want to be sure about water potability, bring own disinfectant.
Rules: All participants commit themselves to stay for the entire retreat, to adhere to schedule, to keep silence, not to read and write. Sexual activities are to be discontinued for the duration of the retreat and the five or eight (old students) silas (moral practice precepts) to be adhered to. Clothes should be comfortable, white and decent (no shorts and tank tops).
Note: Well suited for serious practitioners with retreat experience, desiring intensive practice. Also suited for beginners who have no particular problem sitting for long periods of time and who are ready to submit to an intensive and stringent daily.