Meditation has been practiced in the Buddhist tradition for over 2,500 years as a method for discovering the natural state of the mind at rest. The practice of sitting meditation helps us to develop a sense of clarity and peace so innate wakefulness can emerge.

The teachings of Shambhala Buddhism emphasize the potential for enlightenment inherent in everyday life situations and states of mind. Through discipline, gentleness and curiosity, the practitioner is invited to let go of limiting habitual patterns and experience the present moment as fresh and open.

Mindfulness meditation is the foundation of all practices at the Victoria Shambhala Centre. This ancient method of self-discovery is rooted in the simple premise that every human being has the ability to cultivate the mind’s inherent stability, clarity and strength in order to be more awake and compassionate in the world.

About Meditation Instruction

meditatorMeditation instruction is available free of cost to anyone at the Victoria Shambhala Centre’s weekly Tuesday Night Open House and public meditation sessions—see the Public Meditation Schedule—and at other times by arrangement.

You can receive an in-depth introduction to meditation through the Way of Shambhala path of training. You are always welcome to speak to an instructor about your practice at public gatherings. Membership at the centre gives you access to an ongoing working relationship with one of the Meditation Instructors of your choice.

In the Shambhala tradition, meditation instruction involves more than the communication of a technique. There are many subtle adjustments to the basic practice that can be explored depending on what challenges are arising in ones practice. The Meditation Instructor can advise you how to meet difficulties with meditation and suggest other resources.

Depending on a person’s interest and experience, meditation instruction could include:

Introducing the practice of meditation

Introductory meditation instruction presents the basic meditation techniques taught in the Shambhala community.

Clarifying the view of meditation

In our tradition, meditation instruction involves more than the communication of a technique; it is, at heart, about the transmission of the revolutionary view that unconditional wisdom and compassion are the very ground of our being, and that by learning to relax more and more fully, we allow this fundamental nature to flower.

Instruction on working with obstacles to meditation

Common obstacles to meditation include disheartenment, resistance, procrastination, discursiveness and spacing out. The obstacles are well documented in the Shambhala Buddhist teachings—and so are their antidotes.

Guidance on the path of practice and study

Shambhala presents many opportunities for people to deepen their practice and study—public meditation sessions, classes, weekend and longer retreats, and advanced assemblies, to name a few. A meditation instructor can help you decide what to do next and when to do it.

Guidance on joining meditation and daily life

Meditation is referred to as ‘practice’ because it prepares us to work with the many challenges we face daily off the cushion. Over time we develop the inner resources and tools to ride the ups and downs of our life.

For a selection of introductory meditation resources see Learn to Meditate on our blog.

Meditation Instructors

Shambhala meditation instructors are senior practitioners specially trained and authorized to help people deepen and stabilize their practice and understanding of meditation. We encourage anyone who wishes to have a regular meditation practice to work with a meditation instructor of their choice. This service is available to all members at the Victoria Shambhala Centre.

Meditation Instructors are required to abide by a strict code of conduct and confidentiality. This relationship is based on friendship and mentoring. The frequency of check-ins with a Meditation Instructor is entirely individualized and can range from occasional visits to a regular, ongoing mentor relationship.

If you have questions regarding your practice and would like to connect with a Meditation Instructor at the Victoria Shambhala Centre email [email protected].

John CowanJohn Cowan | Meditation Instruction Coordinator
[email protected]


Mark HazellMark Hazell
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Rebecca Hazell
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Layth MatthewsLayth Matthews
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Susan McConnellSusan McConnell
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Jim SacamanoJim Sacamano
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Suzanne SparlingSuzanne Sparling
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Hamish TuckerHamish Tucker
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