Monday, 30 April 2012


This lunchtime half a dozen of us gather at the offices of Christians Aware in Saxby Street, to review the Faith Awareness course offered in the last spring term ("Mindfulness and Wisdom") and discuss what might be offered in that slot starting January 2013.

We settle on the title, “Going on Beyond: Meditation and Mysticism in the World Faiths”.

It was agreed that this course focus less on theory and more on practice than previous courses and not be so academically inclined.

The course will start (as is customary) with a couple of introductory sessions led by Ian Grayling and Kevin Commons which will set out the faith neutral background:
  • Fowler’s higher stages of Faith - going beyond the limits of the rational mind
  • Zohar & Marshall on numinous and mystical experience
  • Possibly some material from Alister Hardy’s religious experience research unit
  • Meditation or contemplative prayer as an aid to going on beyond
  • Introduction to meditation practice – focusing on physical posture and the breath

A series of inputs from speakers representing a selection of the main world faiths who will:
  • Set out the practice of meditation or contemplative prayer in their own tradition
  • Provide a brief story of a revered person from their own tradition as an exemplar of the particular practice
  • Provide instruction on the form of meditation or contemplative prayer used in their own tradition
  • Lead a 15 minute exercise based on the practice
  • Answer questions from the audience arising from their own brief experience of the practice that evening

A final round-up session will take an overview of the whole course and will promote the interfaith meditation group hosted by the Buddhist group at Leicester University.

Chairs will be available for the formal meditation session.  People wishing to sit on the floor will be asked to bring along their own meditation equipment if necessary.

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