BEGINNERS: Dhyana Yoga courses (Sundays) and group (Fridays)
Tuition for beginners consists of regular courses on Sunday mornings dovetailing with a Friday evening practice group:
Dhyana Yoga (The Path of Meditation) courses consist of three parts, all separate workshops 10.30am – 1pm on Sundays. Week 1 covers the basic theory and mechanics of meditation as a spiritual discipline, broadly following the Raja Yoga system laid down by the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, including the systematic use of breathing and chakras. Week 2 develops this with the use of mantra and devotional visualisation. Week 3 inclines towards Self-Enquiry/Jnana Yoga, using more refined chakral techniques to develop Self-attention (Atma Dhyana).
See here for a fuller synopsis of the course.
Course attendance and booking: courses are open to all but places need to be booked in advance (see here for details). It is not possible for newcomers to attend Week 2 or Week 3 without attending Week 1, or to join the intermediate Tuesday or Saturday groups without completing the whole course. If unsure about when to come along, please email the Centre for guidance. Returning students are also welcome to book refresher sessions, whether whole courses or individual workshops.
Beginners’ meditation group: takes place at 7pm every Friday and involves a 30 minute silent meditation. No booking is required, this group is open to all including members of the public.
OM Healing: follows on from the beginners’ meditation at 8pm on Friday and is open to all. Please see the OM Healing page for more information.
INTERMEDIATE: Ramakrishna Group (Tuesdays and Saturdays 7pm)
Following on from the introductory sessions is the Ramakrishna Group, named after the famous 19th century Indian saint who was the living embodiment of religious harmony (as in this photograph, left: a contemporary of Sri Ramakrishna was Lahiri Mahasaya, the archetypal householder yogi, pictured a few paragraphs below. These two great souls are the principal inspirations behind the Dhyana Centre).
Attendance: both sessions are drop-in classes from 7pm – 9pm with two periods of silent meditation, both around 45 minutes. There is a break in each session at 8pm allowing participants either to arrive or leave. These two classes are for Centre members and associates only, and those graduating from the introductory course who are automatically invited to join. They are not open to members of the public, even if they have prior yogic experience. Booking is not required.
The Lahiri Group meets every Monday evening in Crystal Palace, south London. This is open only to experienced members of the Ramakrishna Group: meditations are a straight two hours and access is by invitation only.
RETREATS: Sundays 12 noon – 6pm
One day silent meditation retreats are held three times a year (New Year, Easter and late summer) at the Theosophical Society’s premises in London’s West End. Participants may attend for either the whole or part of the day. These sessions are for DC members, associates and current students only, they are not open to members of the public.
MULTI-FAITH DEVOTIONAL SERVICES
Please see here.
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.