The purpose of meditation is to make our mind calm and peaceful. If our mind is peaceful, we will be free from worries and mental discomfort, and so we will experience true happiness; but if our mind is not peaceful, we will find it very difficult to be happy, even if we are living in the very best conditions.
Usually we find it difficult to control our mind. It seems as if our mind is like a balloon in the wind – blown here and there by external circumstances. If things go well, our mind is happy, but if they go badly, it immediately becomes unhappy.
By training in meditation, we create an inner space and clarity that enables us to control our mind regardless of the external circumstances. Gradually our mind will become more and more peaceful, and we will experience a purer and purer form of happiness. Eventually, we will be able to stay happy all the time, even in the most difficult circumstances.
If we train in meditation systematically, eventually we will be able to eradicate from our mind the delusions that are the causes of all our problems and suffering. In this way, we will come to experience a permanent inner peace, known as “liberation” or “nirvana”. Then, day and night in life after life, we will experience only peace and happiness.
What to expect at a class
Meditation involves concentrating on a virtuous object. This means an object that when we concentrate on it makes our mind peaceful and induces a positive frame of mind. We might for example meditate on the preciousness of our human life, love, compassion, patience or deeper objects such as ultimate truth emptiness.
We usually begin a class with a short breathing meditation. This is followed by a talk explaining a practical topic which we can immediately use to help us solve our daily problems and let go of our negative minds. Finally we practise the main meditation which consists of contemplation followed by single pointed meditation on the topic taught in that class.
Everyone is welcome to attend the classes, regardless of whether Buddhist or not. You do not need to wear any special clothes. Seating is available on chairs or meditation cushions on the floor. We hope you will enjoy the relaxed and friendly atmosphere at Vajrapani Kadampa Buddhist Centre.