I was born in South London in 1960. After leaving school in the late seventies I obtained a Degree in Biochemistry and Genetics and a couple of years later began an eight year career teaching in adult education.
Then in the early nineties I got involved with an international Buddhist group based in the UK, this led to me living and working with other Buddhists for the next thirteen years. My engagement with this group culminated with me working for four years as a full - time member of the team running the North London Buddhist Centre in Islington. In more recent years I have been engaged in caring for my ageing mother and father, while continuing to take part in occasional mediation teaching at various venues around London.
My approach to meditation teaching
I have been practising a variety of meditation forms, mostly from the Buddhist tradition, since 1992 and have been teaching meditation and leading groups since 2004. Several years ago I had the opportunity to lead a short meditation session on TV. This was part of an investigation into the effects of various activities on stress levels for Channel four's popular science show 'Men in White.
One of the main difficulties encountered by meditation practitioners is the maintenance of focus in their practice, this is due to the natural tendency of the mind to drift off the object of concentration. Over the years I have developed an approach to meditation which emphasises emotional engagement with the various stages of the practice, which I now incorportate into my meditation teaching. I have found this approach to be very beneficial in helping to maintain focus when practicing meditation.
The meditations I teach
Nowadays I tend to concentrate on two traditional meditation practices: the Metta Bhavana (cultivation of positive emotion) and Sitting in Awareness. These two meditations, both originating from methods going back several thousand years, have been shown to usefully complement each other to give a well balanced meditation practice.
Occasionally I also give instruction on other traditional meditation forms including the mindfulness of breathing, walking meditation, the Five or Six Element Practice and the Stupa Visualisation. The latter being an example of a purely visualization based practice.