What’s it like to do an intense, silent meditation retreat?

RETREAT follows thirty-five Westerners as they attempt an intense, eight-week, silent, meditation retreat in Thailand led by the American Buddhist teacher, B. Alan Wallace. Some are experienced mediators, some are beginners. The practice they're learning is shamatha, or calm abiding, stilling the mind with sustained, one-pointed, concentration...simple enough sounding, but extremely difficult to master...and considered to be an essential step on the path to full enlightenment. Alan Wallace teaches it through a Buddhist understanding of the nature of consciousness and contrasts that with the prevailing materialist paradigm of modern neuroscience. ...

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