How did I get into Meditation?
The Just Meditation Story
Hi, my name is Nicholas, and I founded Just Meditation in 2014 in order to develop a distinctive approach to the learning and practice of meditation that is simple, accessible and inclusive.
But my own journey into meditation began 20 years earlier.
I was in my late twenties, and my life was a mess. I was heavily into drink and drugs and it was all going downhill fast. The truth is I was profoundly unhappy, possibly without even realising it, and for whatever reason I was just drinking myself into oblivion.
There were, no doubt, a whole host of text-book psychological reasons for all this, but in simple terms I think I was just deeply unhappy, for one reason or another, and I just got myself into a really self-destructive rut. Slowly, I came to realise that I was drinking myself into oblivion, perhaps even deliberately. More or less permanently wrecked, by the time I hit rock-bottom I had essentially given up on life.
But it wasn’t all doom and gloom. I’d always been quite creative and I was an avid reader, with a keen interest in Buddhism, amongst other things. I’d read a few books about meditation. And these books made it sound attractive, something I wanted to do – not least because, well, who wouldn’t want enlightenment, right? But I’d never actually tried it. And of course, in those days, it wasn’t like it is now, there was no internet, there was no YouTube or anything like that. And in any case, I was too busy getting wasted all the time.
Eventually, the realisation that things had spiralled completely out of control, coupled with a growing desire to learn more about meditation, forced me to do something decisive. I needed to get my head together, sort my life out, and address the problem of my drinking. So, I gave away everything I owned, withdraw all my savings, and went to India, like so many before and since, in search of enlightenment.
I had my last drink on the plane.
Bit of a cliche, I know, but there we are. That’s what happened. And although I had initially planned to just go away for a few months to sort my head out, I actually ended up spending the next two years, travelling around and living in monasteries and ashrams, learning about meditation and yoga and reading everything I could find about Indian philosophy and all that kind of stuff.
When I returned to England, I was a different person. I knew I couldn't go back to my old way of life: I had to follow a spiritual path, full-time, but I really didn’t know how or what what form it might take. Eventually, I decided to go to university as a so-called ‘mature student’, where I took a degree in religious studies before getting a PhD in Buddhist philosophy. It was quite something to find myself at Cambridge University having been kicked out of school with lousy grades. After a long period of discernment I ended up being ordained as a priest in the Church of England, which really took me out of my comfort zone!
But meditation was always my path, and I've never deviated from it.
Fast forward twenty years from that life changing experience of travelling to India. It’s now 2014 and, alongside my church role, I'm leading a popular monthly meditation group in Newcastle upon Tyne. There were a few things about this group that were different to what one might typically expect. For a start, it wasn’t part of any kind of religious organisation. It wasn’t a Buddhist group, or a church group. And that was because I felt there was a need for a space that was neutral and therefore truly inclusive, that didn’t involve having to buy into any particular belief system or worldview.
So I worked really hard on making the practice as accessible as possible. I avoided any use of technical jargon. I kept things simple, so that pretty much anyone could get into it. And that was the second thing that was different. The people. We had a really good balance of men and women attending the sessions, from all sorts of different backgrounds, sharing the silence together.
And so, Just Meditation was born.
And, to this day, Just Meditation continues to embody two essential features. First, it is independent and inclusive. And second, it is simple and accessible. In short, Just Meditation is just meditation.
Check out my blog to find out more about Just Meditation, or better still, download my FREE Introduction to Just Meditation workshop!
An Introduction to Just Meditation
This workshop provides the perfect introduction to the Just Meditation approach
In it, I will explain what meditation is, and why it's something worth doing, before leading into a short Meditation practice.ACCESS MY FREE MEDITATION WORKSHOP HERE
Everyday Meditation for Everyone
Just Meditation was founded by Nicholas Buxton in 2014 in order to develop a distinctive approach to the learning and practice of meditation, through drop-in classes, courses, workshops and training.
Just Meditation neither promotes nor denies any particular tradition or worldview, whether religious or secular, but simply facilitates the learning and practice of mindfulness meditation so that anyone and everyone can enjoy the benefits of it in their everyday lives.
Just Meditation is independent and inclusive. We believe that meditation belongs at the heart of everyday life: it is our goal to make the benefits of meditation accessible, affordable and available to all.
Just Meditation is just meditation.
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