Zenspirations

//Mindfulness

What is a Koan?

A koan is a word, phrase or story used in Zen practice to bring about an awakening. Contemplating the question or phrase, given to you by your teacher, leads you beyond the dualistic mind to a sense of completeness.

On the 8-week ‘Mindfulness for Insight’ course, we introduce you to koan practice, by encouraging you to sit in meditation asking the question “Who am I?” You simply sit, being aware of […]

By |June 3rd, 2020|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness|0 Comments

Mindful Movement

Mindful movement or meditation in action is the perfect transition between sitting meditation and daily life. It helps us start to bring our meditation practice with us into our day and into our activities.

Moving, stretching, breathing, being aware of each motion, each breath, staying aware and focussed as we take it slowly and mindfully. Just allow thoughts and emotions to come and go as we focus on our body and […]

By |May 21st, 2020|meditation, Mindfulness|0 Comments

What is Zen Taiso?

Zen means ‘meditation’ and Taiso is Japanese for ‘exercise’, so Zen Taiso is a way of practicing ‘moving meditation’ or ‘mindful movement’.

Taiso is often practiced in Zen temples, as part of their daily exercise, as it helps to prepare the body for sitting meditation. Methods may include Zen Yoga, breathing into the hara and movements for the meridian lines in the body, allowing energy to flow.

Taiso can be practiced by counting […]

By |April 27th, 2020|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness, yoga|0 Comments

Mantra’s in meditation

The word mantra means ‘mind protection’, used in a similar way to an affirmation, it uses repeated sounds to bring the mind into balance. Mantra’s can aid deeper states of meditation, they can be spoken, chanted or said quietly in your mind.

Matching your mantra to your breath – breathing in, pause, breathing out, means that your mantra can be practiced in meditation as well as while you walk, wait for […]

By |April 14th, 2020|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness, yoga|0 Comments

A lotus for you…

My first introduction to mindfulness was through books by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, such as “Peace is every step” and “Peace is every breath”, they offer wonderful examples of daily mindfulness practices, such as walking meditation and washing the dishes, as well as deeper methods of loving speech and deep compassionate listening.

In Peace is every step, he contemplates flowers and garbage and how one turns into another. “If […]

By |March 13th, 2020|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness, yoga|0 Comments

Zen mini retreat – celebrating the Sangha

Sangha means community and in Buddhism it is one of the three jewels, where we take refuge in the Buddha, the Dharma (the teachings) and the Sangha (a community of like minded people practicing together.)

Sangha Day is a Buddhist holiday celebrated in monastic communities around the world. It is celebrated on the full moon of the first lunar month, in 2020 this is on 7 February. Our Zen mini retreat is […]

By |January 27th, 2020|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness|0 Comments

Calming our inner fear

The most terrifying thing I have ever done, is not something that most people would think of as terrifying, it’s simply facing the parts of me that scare me, the bits of me that bring up fear, vulnerability, panic, terror in everyday life.

If I move away from my safe space, home, loved ones or my
known comfort zone, fear sets in and my body reacts as if something terrible is
going […]

By |October 10th, 2019|meditation, Mindfulness, Relaxation, yoga|0 Comments

Summer Sangha – Meditation & Mindfulness Classes

Sangha means community and in Buddhism it is one of the three jewels, where we take refuge in the Buddha, the Dharma (the teachings) and the Sangha (a community of like minded people practicing together.)

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By |July 9th, 2018|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness|0 Comments

Making friends with anxiety through mindful drawing

Anxiety was the biggest reason I wanted to learn mindfulness techniques and so I have been exploring anxiety through mindfulness for a number of years now. […]

By |May 3rd, 2018|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness|0 Comments

Comparing Mindfulness courses

The Meditation and Mindfulness 8 week courses I teach are similar to those on an MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) course, however the MBSR and MBCT (Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy) courses were both originally designed to help with specific conditions and tend to be used in hospitals and clinics. MBSR was designed to help with the stress of illness, and MBCT was designed to help avoid relapse into depression. […]

By |November 27th, 2017|Classes, meditation, Mindfulness|0 Comments