“The mind is the great slayer of the Real. Let the disciple slay the slayer” (H.P. Blavatsky: ‘The Voice of the Silence’ 1889)
The Dhyana Centre exists as a community service in the heart of London for the sole purpose of teaching meditation and encouraging its practice as a spiritual discipline. The Centre, an independent branch of the Theosophical Society in England, adopts an eclectic and non-sectarian approach that combines both Eastern and Western contemplative techniques. The emphasis is on introductory courses, open to all without restriction or financial charge, but the Centre aims to cater for all levels of meditative experience by offering a progression of classes and groups.
Head and heart
The Centre’s motto is “Live to Learn to Love”, which clearly expresses life’s greatest lesson and the route that we must all take to reach our Divine goal. Whatever spiritual path or means we may choose to employ, it is only by and in love that human potential can manifest its highest expression. At its deepest level, meditation is the ultimate act of love – a total surrender of the individual self.
For beginners, the Dhyana Centre teaches a system of ‘Bhakti-Dhyana’ meditation that seeks to integrate classical yogic contemplation (Raja/Dhyana Yoga) with inner devotional techniques, and in a format and manner suited to students from variable cultural, ethnic and religious backgrounds. The system works on the basis that love and concentration are simply two sides of one coin: what you love you will naturally focus your mind upon, conversely whatever you focus your mind upon you will develop love for as you start to transcend awareness of duality and to sense the underlying Unity. Devotion enhances meditation and meditation enhances devotion; the two are just differing aspects of one integrated spiritual discipline and they work together to produce a powerful and direct access to higher consciousness.
Centre activities (see here for fuller details)
The Centre’s teaching activities are grouped into three distinct levels:
|Introductory||'Joy of Meditation' course & group||Sundays & Tuesdays|
|Intermediate||Ramakrishna group||Fridays & Saturdays|
Meditation for beginners: the main emphasis of the Centre is on teaching and encouraging meditation for beginners and ‘Joy of Meditation’ courses, including a weekly practice group, are run throughout the year for that purpose. See the Calendar page for more details and dates of these courses, plus email links to book places.
[PLEASE NOTE that these courses teach the theory and practice of meditation as a spiritual discipline ie. as a transformative ‘yoga’ in the highest sense of the word, not simply as a therapy or method of relaxation.]
In addition to the regular weekly classes there are meditation retreats, OM Healing circles and multi-faith devotional services. All these activities take place at the Theosophical Society’s headquarters in the West End of London unless otherwise stated (see Contact page for address, map etc. plus email details).
ACCESS: only the introductory courses are open to newcomers (plus the weekly OM Healing circles which involve chanting and are open to all, including the optional period of meditation that accompanies them); all the other classes are specifically for members of the Centre and those who have graduated from the foundation training. Newcomers interested in meditation are warmly invited to attend but must book a place on Part 1 of an introductory ‘Joy of Meditation’ course in the first instance. This includes those with prior yogic experience for whom it will be an induction and attunement; it is not possible to join the intermediate or advanced groups direct. Please email the Centre if in doubt.
Emailing list for enquirers
The Centre has an emailing list which sends out a monthly programme to its registered members. If you would like to be added temporarily to this emailing list, please email the Centre to that effect. Once registered, you will receive the newsletters for at least three months after which you will automatically be removed from the list unless you have requested otherwise.
Free of charge: the Dhyana Centre is run as a community service and all its activities are free of charge. It is funded entirely by voluntary donations from its members and students, and attendees are invited to contribute according to their means.