Before the meditation, you’re told to bring pillows, blankets & be comfortable. And that minimum effort is required. This sounded like the perfect extracurricular activity to me. Me, my brain & my blanket. Beautiful.
When we arrived, the place was packed. The smell of incense was in the air and you couldn’t miss the two ginormous gongs as the focal point in the room. We found a spare space and made ourselves comfortable. It felt like a big adult sleepover. With gongs. Once everyone was comfortable and laying down, the meditation began with deep breathing exercises & repetitive mantras. As someone who’d always believed this kind of thing to be a load of gobbledegook, I could feel the resistance begin but fought against it, breathing deeply and letting myself relax.
When the gongs started, they were loud. I’m not quite sure what I was expecting. Your brain is kind of all over the place with all the different sounds and sometimes you have to snap your eyes open to ground yourself and then go back to where you were.
At some points, I wanted to scream ‘shut up’. The gongs went on for so long and were sometimes unforgiving. The feeling I likened it to was when you’ve been on a plane for many hours and you feel claustrophobic and wish the constant drone would end. But then again, there were times that the gongs were beautiful & melodic.
I can’t tell if I went to sleep or not. I feel that I went into some kind of state but can’t put it into words. At one point, I thought ‘I’m never doing this again’ but since coming home, I’ve booked again.
I wanted to find something that took me away from myself & from the monotony of every day life & this satisfies that urge. And that’s why I want to do it again. It was good to get away from my little phone screen, from the tv, from humans (although I was surrounded by loads of corpse-like ones) and have an hour ‘off’.
Life is about trying new things & I’m glad I tried this. If you have gong baths near you, why not give it a go! If nothing else, it’s great to be a big kid and lie around wrapped in a blanket for a while with a whole load of strangers .. one for the bucket list!