Some of the best places for meditation in Sussex
PUBLISHED: 17:09 01 February 2016 | UPDATED: 17:09 01 February 2016
Science proves that meditation can dramatically improve our wellbeing. Hazel Sillver suggests some of the best places to practise it around Sussex.
Mindfulness is a type of meditation and an attitude of being present (rather than lost in thought) throughout the day. The Hamblin Trust offers courses in meditation, mindfulness and philosophy, as well as meditation groups, at Hamblin Hall, which is situated in peaceful gardens, just outside Chichester.
01243 572109; thehamblintrust.org.uk
Yoga, Qigong and Meditation, near Midhurst
The lovely chapel at Cowdray Hall offers courses, meet-ups and classes in seated meditation (including mindfulness meditation and chanting) and various forms of moving meditation (such as Hatha, Flow and Gentle Yoga and Qigong Moving Meditation).
01730 812423; cowdrayhall.co.uk
Buddhist Meditation, Worthing
Learn the benefits and techniques of meditation with teachers from the Bodhisattva Kadampa Meditation Centre at this weekly class. As well as listening to Buddhist philosophy, there will be the opportunity to practise meditation. There are also Kadampa classes in Crawley, Horsham, Lewes, Uckfield, Hove, Eastbourne and Bexhill.
01273 732917; meditateinbrighton.com/worthing-meditation-classes
Hot Yoga, Chichester
At LANO studio, you can take a hot yoga class seven days a week. This addictive form of moving meditation is practised at around 40°C because it’s thought that the heat warms the muscles (thus preventing injury) and aids detoxification. Choose from 90 and 60-minute classes at flowing, slow or power pace.
01243 698725; lanoyoga.com
Contemplative Prayer, Chichester
The Chichester Contemplative Prayer Group meets once a month to practise silent meditation (known as ‘contemplation’) together. Each meeting starts with a reading or teaching on contemplative prayer in the tradition of Christian mysticism; this is followed by 20-30 minutes of silent contemplation.
01243 775730; bestillchichester.com
Tai Chi and Qigong, Littlehampton and Worthing
Sussex Zhong Ding offers weekly classes in the ancient moving meditation techniques of qigong and tai chi. A qigong class will teach a series of health-boosting gentle exercises and in a tai chi lesson pupils will be taught flowing, relaxing movements that gradually strengthen the body (especially the legs) and improve posture. There are also classes in Ferring and Rustington.
07768 949394; sussexzhongding.co.uk
Mindfulness Meditation, Lewes
The Lewes Walking in Peace Sangha comes together once a week to practise mindfulness. This form of meditation, taught by Zen Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh, is the art of stilling the mind and being present, rather than lost in thought. Beginners are welcome.
0845 250 0507; walkinginpeacelewes.wordpress.com
Walking Meditation, Hove
A wonderful opportunity to practise the ancient art of walking meditation at All Saints church twice a week. Hosted by Christian group Contemplative Fire, participants walk their way to the centre of a canvas labyrinth and out again, treading each step in stillness. Open to everyone – you don’t have to be Christian!
01273 733331; allsaintshove.org/worship/meditation
Tai Chi, Haywards Heath
Learn the calming, graceful art of tai chi at weekly classes in Horsham, Lindfield and Haywards Heath. The White Crane Academy teaches a 66-movement sequence form of tai chi that originated in China, and also offers classes in qigong and meditation.
07834 375776; whitecraneacademy.com
Contemplation Retreats, near Crawley
Worth Abbey offers a series of retreats that provide the opportunity to practise Christian meditation (known as ‘contemplation’ or ‘contemplative prayer’) on a deeper level, sometimes spending days in complete silence.
01342 710318; worthabbey.net
Christian Mantra Meditation, Hove
Using the techniques taught by the late Benedictine monk John Main, this group meets once a week at the Sacred Heart church to practise mantra meditation. Sitting upright for 20-30 minutes, meditators silently repeat the Aramaic phrase “Maranatha,” which can be translated as “Come, Lord.”
01273 857998; sacredhearthove.org.uk
Vajrasati Yoga, Brighton
Brighton is perhaps the yoga capital of the UK. You can practise most forms of yoga here, from the powerful cardiovascular sequences of Ashtanga to the gentle strength and awareness of Scaravelli. One of the newer forms of yoga was created by Brightonian Jim Tarran – known as Vajrasati, it combines asanas (postures) with meditation, breathing practices and mantra.
07960 192662; vajrasatiyoga.co.uk
Meditation and Yoga Retreats, near Crowborough
The Rivendell Retreat Centre offers Buddhist yoga and meditation retreats to beginners as well as more experienced practitioners. Spend a weekend in these peaceful surrounds, enjoying vegetarian food and practising the art of inner stillness. Non-Buddhists are welcome.
01825 733 764; rivendellretreatcentre.com
Metta and Mindfulness Meditation, Hastings
The Hastings Triratna Buddhist Group meets once a week to practise meditation together. This will either be mindfulness meditation or metta bhavana (loving kindness) meditation. The latter has been proven to produce happy brainwaves.
07770 558146; hastingsbuddhistcentre.ning.com
The Yoga Life Studio offers a wide range of yoga classes seven days a week. Choose from the fascinating Kundalini yoga (which combines cardiovascular movements with chanting and meditation), classical Hatha yoga, powerful Ashtanga yoga, seniors’ yoga, teen yoga
07812 052742; yogaeastbourne.com
Tai Chi, Crowborough
Learn the ancient meditative martial art of tai chi at Phoenix Rising’s brilliant weekly classes. Tai chi improves posture, wellbeing, suppleness of joints and co-ordination and creates a sense of inner calm.
01892 654585; crowboroughtaichi.com
Yoga, East Grinstead
Bend your body into relaxing shapes at the Yoga Akasha studio. Classes include Hatha, Vinyasa Flow, Pregnancy, Iyengar, Ashtanga and Gentle yoga, as well as relaxation yoga (Nidra), yoga for babies and yoga dance.
07956 969141; yogaakasha.co.uk