The Just Meditation Blog

Meditation is... the cultivation of awareness

Meditation is essentially the practice of taking the focus of our attention away from ourselves, away from our own thoughts, away from the constructs of self that our thoughts make manifest, away from our illusions and attachments – even if only for a few moments. And by doing this, we...

Continue Reading...
The Rise of Mindfulness

Suddenly, in about 2014, everyone was talking about mindfulness. Although derived from Buddhist meditation practices, mindfulness achieved such unprecedented levels of mainstream popularity that many people may not even be aware of its Buddhist origins. The story of how this came about is,...

Continue Reading...
Calmness, Clarity and Compassion

When we think about why we meditate, one of the reasons is because we expect to gain some benefit from doing so.

Those benefits could be many and varied. Indeed, it is common to see meditation promoted with long lists of all the issues meditation will resolve, whether they be physical, mental or...

Continue Reading...
A Month of Sundays

“The first forty-eight hours are the worst,” said a Benedictine monk of my acquaintance when I told him I was going to be spending a month at Parkminster. “But if you can get through that you’ll be fine!” he added cheerfully.

Helpful advice, no doubt, but still...

Continue Reading...
Learning to Meditate

It is often said that we live in a society in which everyone is ‘searching for something.’ More specifically, they are searching, we are to infer, for some kind of ‘spiritual’ fulfilment. Sometimes my naturally sceptical disposition makes me think this is just one of those...

Continue Reading...
Distractions in Meditation

As soon as we start to meditate, we find out how distracted we really are. Sometimes we are so distracted, that we can’t meditate at all. So, what are these distractions, and what can we do about them?

When we meditate we set an intention to sit quietly and focus our attention on one thing,...

Continue Reading...
The Untold Story

In 1994-95 I spent six months living with a small group of Thai Buddhist monks in a forest just north of Aukland, New Zealand. It was, in so many wonderful ways, one of the happiest and most liberating periods of my life, and I wrote about it in my book ‘Tantalus and the Pelican’ (an...

Continue Reading...
Just Trying to be Normal

Sunna means ‘empty’ in Pali – the language of early Buddhism – and if it wasn’t for the sign at the top of the drive, one could have been forgiven for thinking that the aptly named ‘Sunnataram Forest Monastery’ was nothing but an empty field on the...

Continue Reading...
1 2