Vipassana is one of the oldest meditation techniques – it was taught in India as early as 2,500 years ago. Its purpose is to completely liberate a person from all suffering, to remove illusions and what pollutes the mind. The tool for this is concentration and self-observation, which help to return from a world of illusion to the real world, thanks to which the person meditating has a chance to transform and fully liberate. Vipassana is an exercise of the mind. With its help, a person learns to control their mind, which will aid them in understanding the laws controlling their feelings and judgements.
During the meeting we will present the award-winning 1997 documentary “Doing Time, Doing Vipassana,” by A. Menahemi and E. Ariel from Israel. We will also be screening the famous “The Dhamma Brothers” from 2008 (by J. Phillips, Andrew Kukura, Anne Marie Stein), which will have its Polish premiere at the festival.
Doing time, doing Vipassana
D: Eilona Ariel, Ayelet Menahemi , CI: Ayelet Menahemi, ED: Ayelet Menahemi, CA: Kiran Bedi; IND/IL 1997, COL, 52’
Two women filmmakers from Israel, Ayelet Menahemi and Eilona Ariel, initiated this independent project. In the winter of 1994-95 they spent five months in India, doing intensive research on the use of Vipassana as a rehabilitation method and its dramatic impact on foreign and Indian prisoners. The authorities were unusually cooperative, allowing the team free access to two Indian jails. The documentary begins with the story of Tihar Prison - a huge and notorious institution housing 10,000 inmates, 9,000 of them awaiting trial. When a new Inspector General, Kiran Bedi, was posted there in 1993, Tihar entered period of rapid-fire change.
The Dhamma Brothers
D: Jenny Phillips, Andrew Kukura, Anne Marie Stein, CI: Jeremy Leach, ED: Andrew Kukura; USA 2008, COL, 56’
East meets West in the Deep South. An overcrowded maximum-security prison-the end of the line in Alabama's correctional system-is dramatically changed by the influence of an ancient meditation program. Behind high security towers and a double row of barbed wire and electrical fence dwells a host of convicts who will never see the light of day. But for some of these men, a spark is ignited when it becomes the first maximum-security prison in North America to hold an extended Vipassana retreat, an emotionally and physically demanding course of silent meditation lasting ten days. “The Dhamma Brothers” tells a dramatic tale of human potential and transformation as it closely follows and documents the stories of the prison inmates at Donaldson Correctional Facility who enter into this arduous and intensive program.
Foto: Piotr Furman
Film critic, journalist, publisher, lecturer, director of film channels, creator of television and radio programmes, author and co-author of books on cinema. Along with Zygmunt Kałużyński he created the famous review duo known for their heated arguments about films. He worked for many papers and periodicals, including “Wprost,” “Rzeczpospolita,” “Polityka,” “”Film,” “Teatr,” “Ekran,” “Kino,” “Cinema,” “Playboy,” “The European,” and “The Mortal Gazette.” He loves the sea and passenger ships. He collects books, paintings, and all manner of marine-related objects. He dreams to live in a real lighthouse with a view of the horizon.