“When we are mindful, deeply in touch with the present moment, our understanding of what is going on deepens, and we begin to be filled with acceptance, joy, peace and love.”
— Thich Nhat Hanh
You may find our newcomers’ guide helpful for your first meeting.
When: Every Saturday 2.15pm to 5pm. No need to book, just turn up.
Please arrive and settle in your seat from 2.15pm for individual silent meditation. Group practice will begin at 2.30pm and doors will close. To maintain a concentrated space for practice, please do not drop in later during the session.
Where: Westminster Quaker Meeting House, 8 Hop Gardens, off St. Martins Lane, London, WC2N 4EH. For directions, click here
For: Young people aged from 16 to 35 (ish) from any experience level, background, religion, faith or of none. Please also see our sister community open to all ages, the Heart of London Sangha.
Cost: There is no charge but a suggested donation of £5, or more or less according to your financial situation, to cover the room rental is greatly appreciated. You can donate cash at the session. Any surplus goes to supporting other community activities.
Bring: Your own water or tea in a flask/bottle if you like, which you’re able to bring into the meditation room. Tea and water also are available in the kitchen of the venue. Mats, cushions and chairs are available too. Wearing loose comfortable clothing is suggested.
Our practice: During the afternoon we will share various mindfulness practices. At the root of all these practices is conscious breathing. Being aware that we are breathing in, being aware that we are breathing out. The breath is always happening in the present moment, always in our bodies, so it can act as an anchor that can bring us back from our thinking about the past or the future. The formal mindfulness practices help the energy of mindfulness to start to inhabit more and more moments of our everyday life.
Our meetings are facilitated by volunteer peer practitioners. The meeting format on Saturday afternoons is roughly like this, although it will sometimes change depending on the facilitators:
- Introducing the afternoon of mindfulness and Wake Up London
- Everyone briefly shares their name and their internal weather report (as in the state of your heart and mind right now, such as “clear and calm”, “warm and sunny”, “cloudy with grey skies”, “turbulent” – all weathers are welcome!)
- Guided sitting meditation (up to 20 minutes)
- Walking meditation (10/15 minutes)
- Silent sitting meditation (10/15 minutes)
- Listening to a teaching/reading a teaching by Thich Nhat Hanh (20/30 minutes)
- Sharing and listening from the heart (30 minutes)
- Recitation of the 5 Mindfulness Trainings (5/10 minutes)
- Closing announcements (5 minutes)