ALL levels of meditators are welcome to attend meetings, including those with no previous experience; however, we encourage people to “bring your own practice.”

There are lots of different meditation practices. We encourage people to find what works for them. As a Buddhist group not centered around a specific lineage, we have a wealth of resources to draw from – and a lot to learn from each other! There are many expressions of the Dharma. While some people may benefit from sampling a range of practices, others prefer a more systematic, focused approach; both seem to have their pros (repertoire of “antidotes” vs. more depth) and cons (confusion vs. narrow view). We believe there’s great value in, eventually, choosing a practice and sticking with it for some time. The idea is to develop a strong foundation. Then it may be easier to venture out and explore, while still being able to return “home.”

SEBC has chosen the breath as a common object of meditation – although there are many different ways of practicing with the breath too! Some people focus exclusively on the breath and develop calm/concentration (samatha); others prefer a more expansive awareness, using the breath for support (like an “anchor”) while observing/investigating the changing objects of experience (vipassana). We believe it’s useful to strike a balance. In addition, we practice loving-kindness (mettā) meditation, which helps to settle the mind, generate positive intention, and develop the heart (compassion).

We hope that you’ll use your discernment as to which practice/s work/s best for you. We’re a practice group led by fellow “travellers,” not teachers. Consider us spiritual friends (Pali: kalyana mitta).

“Try to be mindful.  And let things take their natural course. Then your mind will become still in any surroundings – like a clear forest pool. All kinds of wonderful, rare animals will come to drink at the pool – and you will clearly see the nature of all things. You will see many strange and wonderful things come and go, but you will be still. This is the happiness of the Buddha.”

-Ajahn Chah