When and where did you begin to meditate?
Some previous trips to India had created an interest in eastern philosophies and religions, and I had tried it out there. I also used to meditate for 10 minutes at the end of yoga classes. Then I saw the advert in the tube lift at Holland Park, and walked past the School a few times. One day I saw an advert for a General Meeting on the notice board, I went along to the talk – and I signed up then and there!
Why did you take up a regular practice? What was the spark?
I had come to stillness and done body part meditation before, and this had felt liberating. Just to stop the mental noise and chatter and become absorbed in one thing to the exclusion of all others: it felt like I was being set free.
What were your early experiences?
Like most meditators, I found it challenging at first to stop my mind jumping about from thought to thought. Then I learned that this was normal, and simply to let go of the thought - and come back to mantra. Once I had stopped being hard on myself, and expecting certain outcomes, I was more free to allow the meditation experience to flow, and things ran more smoothly.
How does meditating affect your everyday life?
I often felt overwhelmed or stressed before I started meditating – but over time this started to change, and I felt more about to cope with the challenges that life inevitably throws at us all. I also noted that I would respond in a less emotional way to such challenges; and that the clarity and quality of my decision-making improved also. I believe that there is not a soul on this planet who would not benefit from meditation!
What has been your experience as a member of SoM?
Becoming a member of the School of Meditation has undoubtedly been one of the best decisions I have made. In doing so, I have become part of a friendly, open and welcoming community, who I have shared many special times and experiences with. I look forward to our weekly group more than anything else in the week!
The support that the school gives members in their own meditation practice – from weekly groups, to daily online meditations, to open sessions, to reading material, and above all good company has been a corner stone for me of becoming a happier and more relaxed person, through having a regular mediation practice. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the school to anyone considering taking up meditation.