Vipassana is an ancient meditation technique. I have come to understand the word Vipassana to mean ‘to experience clearly’. My understanding of Vipassana is based on my experience with the practice of Vipassana as taught by Satya Narayan (S.N.) Goenka.
I’ve been practicing Vipassana for more than two decades, and have been to a number of 10-day Vipassana courses, and served in a couple. It is a unique experience, and has helped me in my spiritual progress. It’s about getting to “know thyself” in the true sense of the phrase. It is secular in that any human being can do it, and timeless in that any person — whether born today, years ago, or years from now — can do it just as easily.
Vipassana is a practical technique that starts with an experience-based understanding of what manifests within oneself in an unbiased, truthful way, as it exists — without overlaying any subjective opinions, held or accustomed-to beliefs, etc. For more, please see a short video by Goenka-ji here.
Practicing Vipassana has helped bring a certain peace, a certain ability to approach adversities with courage, calm, and an open perspective.
Metta bhavana (from the Sanskrit maitri bhavana) is a key aspect of Vipassana. It teaches one to exude kindness and compassion towards all beings. Goenka-ji explains the importance of metta here.