Tuesdays at 7.45am, Wednesdays at 8.15pm & Saturdays at 8am
We host meditation three times a week. Tuesday morning is a walking meditation using the Labyrinth, Wednesday evening is sacred chanting & meditation. On Saturday mornings we explore a range of meditation and contemplative practices.
What is meditation?
Meditation is the practice of cultivating the capacity to be fully present in the here and now. There is nothing weird or esoteric about meditation; it is simply the practice of mindfully paying attention to what is occurring within and around us without judgment. Mindfulness meditation recognises that the habitual patterns of the mind and our incessant stream of thoughts lead us away from the present moment, to thinking about the past or anticipating the future. Mindfulness is the discipline of learning how to come back to the present moment in order to be fully alive and present in our life.
Jesus challenges us in his teaching to wake up:
- “Recognise what is before your eyes, and the mysteries will be revealed to you” (Gospel of Thomas, Saying 5).
- “The Kingdom of God is among you.” (Gospel of Luke 7, v21)
Do I have to be a Christian to join this group?
No. We create an inclusive atmosphere; the groups are open to anyone who would like to develop a regular mindfulness meditation practice in their life. We draw on a range of texts including the Bible, Christian mystics as well as the insights of Jon Kabat-Zinn, whose writing on mindfulness is not associated with any particular faith tradition.
“Is there anything I can to make myself enlightened?”
“As little as you can do to make the sun rise in the morning.”
“Then of what use are spiritual exercises you prescribe.”
“To make sure you are not asleep when the sun begins to rise.”
Zen master to his disciple
I’m a Christian. Isn’t meditation just for Buddhists?
No. In Christianity, meditation, or contemplative practice as it is often also called, is an ancient spiritual practice dating to the Desert Fathers and Mothers in the 4th & 5th centuries. In the last century John Main, an Irish Benedictine priest, founded the World Century for Christian Meditation and did much to re-introduce the spiritual practice of meditation to Christians.
What is the labyrinth?
The labyrinth is an archetypal image which emerged in different cultures over 4000 years ago; it is a mirror or metaphor for the spiritual journey and the evolutionary spiral of life. The Labyrinth is a single, spiralling path that leads to a central area. You walk the same path back out returning to the beginning. There are no tricks or dead ends unlike mazes. On Tuesday mornings we walk a seven circuit labyrinth that is modelled on the 12th Century Labyrinth found in Chartres Cathedral, France. In the last thirty years, walking the labyrinth has re-emerged as a meditative practice and a symbolic image of pilgrimage, not in the geographical sense, but of the journey we each make through life: a journey to the centre, a return to the heart, back to the Spirit who faithfully waits for us.
What is sacred chanting?
Chanting is an ancient and universal form of worship. It is beautifully simple yet transformative. The sound created when voices come together creates a perfect space for meditation, contemplation and prayer. We meet in the candle-lit Spirit Chapel, Wednesdays at 8.15pm. Anyone can do it! All are welcome! Please enter through the side-door on Eaton Road.
How long do the meditations last?
On Tuesdays the meditation lasts 45 minutes, starting at 7.45am and finishing at 8.30am. On Wednesday evenings Sacred Chanting & Meditation last for an hour from 8.15pm to 9.15pm. On Saturdays meditation starts at 8am and finishes at 9am. On both Tuesdays and Saturdays there is an opportunity if you wish to stay for a light breakfast of tea/coffee and a croissant. A donation to cover the costs of breakfast is welcome.
For more information on our meditation groups visit http://centreforspirituality.org/weekly-events/