“Meditation is dynamism on the inner planes of consciousness. If we want to achieve anything, either in our inner life or our outer life, then the help of meditation is of paramount importance.” – Sri Chinmoy
Throughout the year the Sri Chinmoy Centre of Philadelphia offers a number of free workshops and events designed to help you create or support your meditation practice. Our programmes are based on the philosophy and teachings of Sri Chinmoy and include introductory meditation classes, weekend ‘urban retreats’, live concerts of meditative music, as well as workshops on creativity, Vedic chanting, meditation and sports.
For information on upcoming events, please call us at 215-425-3300 or go to the ‘Contact Us’ tab above.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about our meditation classes
Q: What is covered in your classes?
A: Our meditation courses cover the ABCs of meditation, including posture, breathing and concentration techniques, as well as practical advice on creating your own meditation space at home and setting up your own daily meditation routine. All classes include guided meditation exercises.
Also covered are the difference between meditating in the mind and meditating in the heart; meditation through music and mantra; the relationship between meditation and athletics; and making positive lifestyle changes that support your meditation practice. Many sessions feature chanting or live performances of meditative music.
Q: There are many different kinds of meditation. What kind do you teach?
A: The meditation we teach is from the yoga tradition, with a particular focus on the heart chakra, or heart centre. We try to gradually quiet the mind and enter into the spiritual heart. In the beginning we use various techniques to help us in this process, including breathing, repetition of a mantra, concentration on a candle flame or flower, visualization and focus on meditative music.
Q: Is it easy to learn to meditate?
A: It depends on the individual, and the effort given. Meditation comes quite naturally to some people, while others take a while to get the hang of it. In a sense it’s a little like learning to ride a bike. (Remember, when you were little, how many times did you fall off before being able to ride down the whole block?) The important thing is to keep trying and not to give up after only a few attempts.
Q: Do I need to bring anything to the class?
A: If you can shower and change into clean, light-colored and loose-fitting clothes, that is ideal. But if you are coming straight from work, that’s okay. The most important thing is your sincere aspiration to dive deep within and learn something new about yourself.
Q: Who is Sri Chinmoy?
A: Sri Chinmoy is our meditation teacher. There is more information about his life and philosophy here.
Q: Why is it free?
A: Sri Chinmoy’s students offer meditation classes as a public service. We are happy to share the peace and happiness that we have found through our own meditation practice.
Peace and happiness is inner wealth – it cannot be bought and sold! But to gain this inner wealth requires sincerity and consistent effort on our part. That is the only fee.
Q: But is it REALLY free?
A: YES! you will never be asked for a donation. In fact, we do not accept donations from the public! The classes are funded through donations from members of our meditation group, as well as sales of books and CDs. None of our meditation class instructors and organizers are paid for their time; everything is offered as a public service.
Q: What is the Sri Chinmoy Centre?
A: The Sri Chinmoy Centre is a group of individuals from all faiths and all walks of life who follow the path of meditation taught by Sri Chinmoy. Through meditation, we strive to cultivate peace and harmony within ourselves. Through public service, we strive to cultivate peace and harmony in the world at large.
Q: Are there continuing meditation classes?
A: Our goal in offering meditation classes is to help you establish your own daily meditation practice. If you feel that our style of meditation is good for you and you would like to sincerely follow a path of meditation, then we offer continuing classes where we teach more about Sri Chinmoy’s path. Information will be available at the workshop.
Q: Is this a religion?
A: Not at all. Meditation is simply a technique we use to look within. It is something every human being can learn to do, regardless of their faith. What we find once we look within differs according to the nature of each individual.