"How was the 19 day retreat?" you ask.......
Let me respond to your question like this....
"Every thought is significant. Investigate every thought." noted the late Kristnamurti.
This retreat taught me to do just that. Step-by-step, I learned methods, tools and techniques of mental development to use throughout my meditation practice. It provided me with the time daily to practice the new skills I'd been taught, and it provided me with the one-on-one guidance of a teacher, through a series of interviews, to share my experiences with and to insight from them.
Developing "Wisdom" was a major focus of the retreat, learning to become more compassionate with ourselves as well as with the rest of the beings on this planet.
It was for me, another step towards my becoming much more aware of my own thoughts as they arise in my mind, learing to investigate these thoughts to see if the are beneficial or unbeneficial, and then to act on the beneficial thoughts through my speech and actions so as to create my own personal "Peace of Mind" on a moment-by-moment basis.
Restructuring my conditioned views of the world that lead to my thoughts, speech and actions, will take time. As Rosemary, one of the retreat teachers said to me.... "With Right View and Right Thought, one walks out of suffering (unsatisfactoriness) and onto the Eightfold Path toward Enlightenment."
End of the 19 day retreat..... participants, teachers and nuns.
4:00 a.m. Wake up bell
4:45 a.m. Sitting Meditation
5:30 a.m. Stetching Exercises
6:30 a.m. Sitting Meditation
7:05 a.m. Breakfast
8:15 a.m. Working Meditation
9:00 a.m. Walking Meditation
9:30 a.m. Talk followed by Sitting Meditation
10:25 a.m. Talk
10:30 a.m. Walking Meditation
11:05 a.m. Lunch
1:00 p.m. Walking Meditation
1:45 p.m. Standing Meditation
2:45 p.m. Walking Meditation
3:30 p.m. Sitting Meditation
4:30 p.m. Walking Meditation
5:15 p.m. Light Dinner
6:15 p.m. Sitting Meditation
6:45 p.m. Walking Meditation
7:15 p.m. Talk
8:30 p.m. Optional additional Meditation or sleeping