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Tuesday, 18 September 2012 10:29

Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche - Why meditate?

Written by Christian Kohl

Watch Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche talking about meditation and the importance of knowing and working with our mind.
An eminent and distinguished scholar, teacher and philosopher, and fully ordained Buddhist monk, Rinpoche is widely known as an ardent follower of Mahatma Gandhi, and a life-long campaigner for non-violence. Samdhong Rinpoche was the Prime Minister of the Tibetan Government in exile from 2001 - 2011.

Sunday, 16 September 2012 10:37

Tips for waking up in the morning - part 1

Written by Ian Ives

The only time of day when I can usually fit in some meditation practice is in the morning after I get up and before I start my day’s activities. Usually in the evening I’m too tired to sit for more than just a few minutes. Practicing meditation in the morning works very effectively for me as long as one thing happens first: I actually get up.

I’m sure there are one or two of you out there, or reading this, who have struggled to wake up earlier to do a bit of meditation, and so to express my camaraderie with you, I wanted to share a few things that have helped me out.  Of course going to bed earlier is an obvious one, but here are a few others:

Friday, 14 September 2012 11:35

Jiddu Krishnamurti - What is Meditation

Written by Christian Kohl

In his own unique way Jiddu Krishnamurti talks about the many concepts around the practise of meditation.

But be warned, he will not tell us how to meditate ... of course.

This is the third in a series of 5 posts on the history of meditation, adapted from Meditation- an In-depth Guide by Ian Gawler and Paul Bedson.
See here for the first and second part

Through the 1970s and 1980s many excellent books were published on meditation in general. In the therapeutic arena, Pauline McKinnon, an Australian patient of Dr Meares who had used his methods to recover from agoraphobia in 1983, published her own work based on his techniques, In Stillness Conquer Fear. My own first book, You Can Conquer Cancer, with its emphasis on meditation and cancer, was released in 1984. This was followed by my more specific books on meditation, Peace of Mind in 1987, Meditation—Pure and Simple in 1996, Meditation – an In-depth Guide, co-authored with Paul Bedson in 2010 and The Mind that Changes Everything in 2011.


Friday, 07 September 2012 06:45

Really enjoying the practice

Written by Marieke van Vugt

At this same retreat with Yangthang Rinpoche that I wrote about before, we were all very impressed with the being of this amazing lama. It is quite moving to meet such a special human being, which is why I want to share it with you.

The teachings on the posture in meditation not only give instructions about our physical posture, but also include advice on our inner posture. There is a reason for this. In meditation, openness of both our body and mind and heart are very important.

I have found it very helpful for my practice to reflect on what is really meant by “inner posture”. In the teachings, this aspect of the posture is often described as the posture of our mind. Why? Because it is about our attitude. It is about how we look at ourselves, both our true nature and our relative condition. Another way of explaining the inner posture is that it is the feeling and atmosphere with which we practice.


Watch Father Laurence Freeman talking about a Christian persepctive on meditation. Father Laurence Freeman is a Benedictine monk and Catholic priest of the Benedictine Congregation of Monte Oliveto. He is the Director of the World Community for Christian Meditation, a global network of Christian meditation groups that practice the way of Christian meditation.

Sunday, 02 September 2012 17:16

A basic meditation to cultivate peace of mind

Written by Josh Korda

My homage to Ajahn Lee's basic meditation to cultivate peace of mind:

1) Set an intention to put aside-if only for a little while-everything that's not happening right here and now, and take seven deep, full breaths, letting go of the events of the day with each long exhalation; so don't cut short those exhalations. Thoughts of "May i find true, lasting peace within" will help relax the mind and d rop the dramas.

This is the second in a series of 5 posts on the history of meditation, adapted from Meditation- an In-depth Guide by Ian Gawler and Paul Bedson.
For the first part, see here.

While the 1950s saw the emergence of a few meditation pioneers such as Alan Watts, who only published his bestseller Psychology East and West in 1961, until the early 1960s, meditation in the West continued to remain largely the domain of spiritual seekers.

Most meditation was being taught and practised within the context of either a Hindu yogic, Sufi, Buddhist or Taoist framework.

Then came the Age of Aquarius. The Beatles went to India, met the Maharishi and brought Transcendental Meditation (TM) back to the West. Psychedelic drugs burst out of the experimental laboratories of psychiatrists and the CIA, and flooded the streets. Vietnam galvanised a generation, the counterculture flourished, and people were intent on expanding their minds. Very quickly meditation in the West was popularised, and perhaps even stigmatised to a degree, as the domain of the hippies.

Here is Khandro Rinpoche on how we can keep the mindfulness we discover on the cushion as we go about daily activity. Hearing from my friend Gabriele that Rinpoche would be teaching in Berlin, I asked Gabriele to ask Khandro Rinpoche to make another What Meditation Really Is video. Rinpoche quickly agreed!