The second community offering I attended was the Charlotte Buddhist Vihara. When I arrived, I was surprised to see that this offering was held in a quaint house in a small neighborhood. The session was lead by Buddhist nun, Ayya Sudhamma Bhikkhuni. Upon walking inside, the aroma of tea mixed with calming decorations made me feel at ease. We started out by introducing ourselves and getting comfortable in the living room. Next, we did two short 2 minute meditation sessions followed by a 30-minute meditation. This final mediation was followed by a dharma talk, which was based in a reflection of our session as well as an opportunity for us to ask Ayya Sudhamma any questions we had about mindfulness and meditation. I really enjoyed my time at this mindfulness session and was able to gain insight into the origins of mindfulness. If you’re interested in attending, use this link to sign up on meetup, you wont regret it!
Hello mindfulness enthusiasts!
So here’s a little about me, and why I decided to make this page. My name is Mel Giegerich and I am a senior at Davidson College in North Carolina. I am a psychology major and I used to play on the NCAA Division I women’s basketball team here. I decided to make this website because of my interest in mindfulness, which started last semester. Mindfulness is becoming a popular therapy technique for various clinical disorders, and, being a psychology major, this really got my attention and I wanted to learn more about how to utilize this method in my practice. Not only does this type of meditation help clinical populations, but it can also help anyone alleviate the stress they face on a daily basis. I personally have been practicing mindfulness for a few months and can notice a huge difference in my overall wellbeing. I no longer feel as stressed, and when I do feel stressed I know how to implement different techniques so that I can better manage these feelings. In creating this website my hopes were that people could use it as a resource to lower their own stress and anxiety levels, particularly for students at my college during exam time. No matter how much time you have in your day, setting aside even 5 minutes to meditate can make a big difference. You also do not have to sit down and meditate to be mindful-there is mindful eating, walking, etc. So as you peruse this site please check out all it has to offer, and last, but not least, happy browsing!
The first community offering I explored was the Insight Mediation Community of Charlotte. This organization utilizes the techniques of insight, or Vipassana, meditation and lovingkindness, or Metta, practice. Insight meditation focuses on attention to breath to calm the mind. Through Metta practice, people are guided to open their hearts and deepen their connection with all beings. This class encourages mediators to be in the present moment and be fully open to everything going on around them. Meditations take place every Wednesday at 7:30 for 30 minutes, with an instructional session from 7:00-7:30 for newcomers. After the 30 minute meditation is over there is a dharma talk and discussion.
My experience with this offering was definitely a positive one. I was a little intimidated by the 30 minute silent meditation but once I got settled it was much easier than I expected. The instructors were very welcoming and the instructional session was helpful to attend before the meditation. After we meditated there was a 30 minute dharma talk and the topic of discussion was mindful eating. The leader explained that in order to fully experience something you need to take your time and pay attention to all the sensations that are present. His example was trying chocolate for the first time. Many people have tried chocolate and explained their experiences with it, but in order to really experience a new food it is important to forget about what you have heard and let yourself navigate the tastes blindly. I thought his talk was very interesting because I often find myself avoiding certain foods because of the opinions of others. I also tend to eat very quickly and the instructor stressed slowing down in order to enjoy the food and the experience that goes along with eating. Overall, I think that this class would be a great option for those new to mindfulness and meditation, although it might be useful to have some experience with meditating before attending because of the 30-minute session.