About Meditation

Meditation is an ancient technique which is being increasingly practised in these modern times. More and more people are turning to meditation to increase their inner peace, good health and well-being.

“The purpose of meditation is to make our mind calm and peaceful. If our mind is peaceful, we will be free from worries and mental discomfort, and so we will experience true happiness; but if our mind is not peaceful, we will find it very difficult to be happy, even if we are living in the very best conditions. If we train in meditation, our mind will gradually become more and more peaceful, and we will experience a purer and purer form of happiness. Eventually, we will be able to stay happy all the time, even in the most difficult circumstances.”

Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso – The New Meditation Handbook

Breating Meditation

“So much of the stress and tension we normally experience comes from our mind, and many of the problems we experience, including ill health, are caused or aggravated by this stress. Just by doing breathing meditation for ten or fifteen minutes each day, we will be able to reduce this stress.
We will experience a calm, spacious feeling in the mind, and many of our usual problems will fall away. Difficult situations will become easier to deal with, we will naturally feel warm and well disposed towards other people, and our relationships with others will gradually improve.”

Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso – The New Meditation Handbook

Lamrim Meditation

Lamrim means the stages of the path to enlightenment. It is a special set of instructions that includes all the essential teachings of Buddha, structured in a comprehensive way that is easy to understand and put into practice. The Lamrim presentation lies at the very heart of Kadampa Buddhism. There is a completely unbroken lineage of these Lamrim instructions from Buddha Shakyamuni down to our present day Spiritual Guides. The instructions of Lamrim are easy to understand and practice, and can readily be applied to solving the problems of daily life. If we gain deep experience of Lamrim there will be no basis for these problems; we shall be able to solve them through the power of our inner peace. First we must understand the benefits that Lamrim offers, and develop a strong desire to practice it. Then by joyfully and patiently doing these meditations we shall gradually experience the fruits of Lamrim practice. Eventually we shall attain freedom from all suffering and the unchanging peace and happiness of enlightenment. There are 21 Lamrim meditations, which are usually practiced in a three-week cycle as a daily meditation practice and explained in The New Meditation Handbook.

Meditation Techniques

Contemplation & placement meditation

We begin by contemplating the meaning of a Dharma instruction that we have heard or read. We do this by considering various lines of reasoning, contemplating analogies, and reflecting on the teachings. By deeply contemplating the instruction, eventually we reach a conclusion or cause a specific virtuous state of mind to arise. This is the object of placement meditation. We then concentrate on the object single-pointedly for as long as possible to become deeply acquainted with it.

Visualisation

Sometimes the teacher will introduce simple visualisation techniques. For example, the following simple visualization is practiced in conjunction with a breathing meditation. When we have settled down comfortably we begin by becoming aware of the thoughts and distractions that are arising in our mind. Then we gently turn our attention to our breath, letting its rhythm remain normal.

As we breathe out we imagine that we are breathing away all disturbing thoughts and distractions in the form of black smoke that vanishes in space. As we breathe in we imagine that we are breathing in blessings and inspiration in the form of white light that enters our body and absorbs into our heart. We maintain this visualisation single-pointedly with each inhalation and exhalation for twenty-one rounds, or until our mind has become peaceful and alert.

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Meditation is an ancient art which is being increasingly practised in these modern times. More and more people are turning to meditation to increase their inner peace, good health and well-being.

The purpose of meditation is to make our mind calm and peaceful.

Since inner peace is the source of all happiness, we can see how important meditation is.

If our mind is peaceful, we will be free from worries and mental discomfort, and so we will experience true happiness; but if our mind is not peaceful, we will find it very difficult to be happy, even if we are living in the very best conditions.

If we train in meditation, our mind will gradually become more and more peaceful, and we will experience a purer and purer form of happiness. Eventually, we will be able to stay happy all the time, even in the most difficult circumstances.

From: How to Transform Your Life by Geshe Kelsang Gyatso

Our weekly meditation classes are suitable for all levels and are easy to understand and practice. Learn simple and effective techiniques which enable you to handle the pressures of daily life in a calm and positive way.

For more information on meditation see The New Meditation Handbook.