Also, see directions and map on the Guildford page.
You and your family are invited to join us on the day from 11:30 to 1:30. We ask parents to provide a simple packed lunch for your children to eat before we start at 12:00. If you wish to have lunch before arriving we would encourage you to arrive at least 10 minutes before we start at 12:00.
At 12:00 we will have a shared meditation with Geoff Hunt in the small (back) room. The children and a parent plus NBW facilitators will then be invited to go to the large (circular room) while Geoff will leads the guided session in the small (back) room for 20 minutes. Then there is a quick change-over with other parents for another 20 minute meditation. There is then a Dharma discussion for all adults in the small room before finishing at 1:30.
Arrivals, packed lunches to be eaten.
Meditation 1 (20 mins)
Meditation 2 (20 mins)
Dharma family talk (20 mins)
Parents are kindly reminded that they should not arrive before 11.00 hrs, because previous sessions will not have finished before that time.
Age groups: The Family Session caters for all children. Those up to 7 or 8 have activities in a creche. Those above 8 sit in meditation with the adults, in an adjoining room. Let us know the age of the children you are bringing. It would be very helpful if you can let us know of your intention to participate and what is the age of the children will be coming along. Parents and children: The Session caters both for parents (and those in a parenting role) and for their children as a family unit. Parents, grandparents and mature people with children in their family will benefit both from meditation and from sharing experience of child-rearing. Activities: Activities for the children could include Dharma-inspired story-telling, games, DVDs, making toys together, simple yoga, attention exercises, mutual respect exercises and the like. A number of Dharma-related books for children are available.
Donations: There is no fee for attending Family Sessions and meetings.
Requirements: The only expectation is that participants will have at least attended the ‘Newcomers’ & Beginners’ Class’ and it is hoped they will also attend some of the weekly Community Meditation sessions from time to time. The Session will depend on donations to cover any costs incurred.
Personnel: Volunteer facilitators are: Ann, Caroline, Geoff, Graham, Lynne, Shriyani and Wai-kei. Lynne is the Family Session Coordinator at email@example.com
Values: The Family Session is informed by the values of New Buddha Way and the Dharma generally: Peace and non-harm, selflessness, compassion and an awareness of the interdependence of all things. Raising children is always a challenge and a learning experience, and is particularly so in our society in the present time. Children – and their parents – are these days subject to the dominant self-centred and consumerist attitudes. ‘Religion’ is presented at school but not always in helpful ways. Children may ask their parents ‘philosophical’ questions which are hard to answer.
As well as learning to enjoy the joyful aspects of life there are important issues such as handling postnatal depression, death, grief, pain and ill-health. For some NBW's Family Session is about finding a space for themselves as parents in which they can cultivate peace and understanding in order to return to their children and partners refreshed and renewed. We encourage our children and grandchildren to follow the dharma in the hope that this will contribute to making our society (and the world) a more peaceful and compassionate place.
There may not always be clear-cut answers and NBW is prepared to share experience, learn and grow. Childen learn from adults and other children. At the same time, a child should always be regarded as a ‘little buddha’ from which we adults can learn.