Mindful Meditation

Mondays - from 3rd February 2020

12:30 - 13:15

G18, Sir Henry Wellcome Building for Mood Disorders Research. 


This is a free, secular drop in session open to all staff and PGRs run by John Danvers (the University's Buddhist chaplain). We'll usually have a short guided meditation followed by a longer quiet sit/ self-guided section and some discussion about the practice.

What is mindful meditation and why is it useful?
By observing all aspects of our experience, without commentary, judgment or clinging, we become quieter, calmer and see more clearly who we are and how we relate to the world.  By attending to our breathing, and to the rich variety of our experiences, we begin to free ourselves from the burden of habits, compulsions and attachments that make us feel anxious or depressed.  Somehow, by seeming to do very little, we change the way we relate to our experience, grow in understanding, increase our sense of wellbeing and enjoy life more fully.

How do we practice mindful meditation?
We sit quietly observing our thoughts, perceptions, feelings and bodily sensations, without judgment, commentary or attachment - being alive to each moment. We also develop concentration and patience, using each breath as a focus. We notice how everything changes and passes away and we learn to let go - rather than clinging to our ever-changing moods, feelings and thoughts.

Mindfulness helps us to: understand and appreciate who we are and how we are in the world; take care of ourselves and feel kinship for others; calm the non-stop chatter in our minds; experience with greater clarity, enjoyment and peace; be alive to this moment – instead of clinging to past and future. 

By setting aside habitual ideas, opinions and beliefs we can see more clearly how things are.

By practicing non-reactive awareness – we are no longer dominated & burdened by our thoughts, feelings, fears and moods.

CLEARING – spectacles become grimy without our knowing it – removing the grime & fog
QUIETENING – observing & letting-go of chatter
CALMING – letting-go of agitation & compulsive mental activity
DEVELOPING - altertness, patience, compassion, kinship
LEARNING - how to guide the embodied mind
POSTURE / EYES /HANDS / BREATH as a focus of attention

 

Please email John Danvers j.danvers@exeter.ac.uk if you have questions and email StaffLife stafflife@exeter.ac.uk to join the mailing list for the group.