All three retreats were very successful with participants leaving their respective retreat feeling positive, energetic, and with calmer clearer minds. Many had their own personal experiences which ranged from “spiritual” in nature - seeing divine blessings in the form of showers of tiny sparkling flakes over the offerings, smells of something burning while performing prostrations, vivid dreams and realisations; to the more “physical” comprised of gastric pain, diarrhea, unquenchable thirst, hunger, sleepiness, insomnia, muscular pains and aching joints. It was said that these physical experiences were due to the purification of lifetimes of accumulated negative karma.
This is not uncommon, as part of the practice is to go without food (during the last 36 hours) and water (for the last 24 hours) while staying silent (i.e. no talking except for recitation of prayers, mantras and sutras) and performing approximately a hundred prostrations during each prayer session. Surprisingly, all participants account that their physical aliments lifted upon the breaking of fast on the last day.
A typical day in a Nyung Nay retreat would see you waking up at around 4.00 – 4.45 am each morning, if not to the sound of a ringing bell at 4.50 am. Upon cleaning up, you would then proceed to the kitchen and to the main hall thereafter for the first session of prayers which begins at 5 am. Between the first and second prayer session is a half an hour break where if you are on duty you would assists in clearing and preparing the offerings for the next session. Each prayer session is approximately 3 hours in length. The third session begins at 3 pm giving you two and a half hours to shower and rest. At 6 pm onwards, you would be free to do what you wish but within the perimeter of the center. Normally it would be lights out by 10 pm!
We rejoice with all who attended the recent Nyung Nay retreats!! Those of you who have not experienced a retreat are encouraged to sign up the next time CGC organizes one. Please see the benefits of attending a Nyung Nay retreat in our previous blog entry on Nyung Nay Retreats & Its Benefits.