The Willpower Institute is offering a free Meditation Course that is suitable for beginners, intermediate, and advanced meditators. The course can be taken for personal development or in-depth study.
Take the Meditation Course
Registration for the 2016-2017 Fall/Winter Meditation course has ended. Please contact the centre nearest you if you’d like to schedule a time to try the meditation technique.
About the Course
The comprehensive Meditation Course has been developed by Phra Dhammamongkolyarn, Luangphor Viriyang Sirintharo, Lord Abbot of Dhammamongkol Temple in Bangkok, Thailand. Luangphor Viriyang is a Master Teacher of Meditation with over 80 years of experience. The course is taught in centers across Canada and the United States by Luangphor Viriyang Sirintharo and/or his certified graduate students. The Master Teacher attends orientations, provides guest lectures and leads the examination process as well as meditation retreats. This is a rare opportunity to study his teachings for personal development or to become certified by one of the most renowned Master Teachers of Mediation. Luangphor’s roots are based in Buddhism, however, meditation is not a religion. This course’s focus is to teach meditation, not religion. People of all faiths are welcome.
The course focuses on Samatha meditation. Samatha is a Pali word that translates into English as calm abiding, which nicely describes both the technique and state of mind in this form of meditation. In terms of meditation technique, through focusing our attention in specific ways, we learn to stay present – in the moment – without engaging in whatever distractions our environment or mind may create for us. This is what is meant by abiding – we are present, but not engaged in the world around us or in us.
Over time, this practice creates calmness or tranquility in the mind. Samatha is the foundation of any good meditation practice, including Vipassana (insight meditation). We will discuss the theory and practice of Vipassana, but we do not conduct Vipassana in our evening practice, as it takes some time to create a firm foundation of Samatha which is necessary for Vipassana practice.
The course runs for approximately 6 months from September to mid-February depending upon the location. There will be two breaks during the course – one in November and one in December. The class meets 5 nights a week, for 2 hours each day or night depending upon the location. The first hour will be spent on the theory of meditation. It will use the textbooks written by Luangphor as the focus of the class, but there will also be time for questions and discussion. The second hour will consist of 30 minutes of walking meditation and 30 minutes of sitting meditation. If you are planning to attend for personal development, there is no attendance requirements. In order to get certified, you are required to complete 200 hours, which is 100 class days. Some missed days are permitted and some hours may be made up through homework. Your course facilitators will explain this more carefully during the first few weeks of the course.
The class will consist of lectures on the principles of meditation, practical application of the theory, discussion, and review sessions. Students taking the course to be certified are required to take an exam and will have an opportunity to do a meditation retreat.
The Willpower Institute is a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to promote world peace through meditation. As a result, there is no tuition fee. There is a nominal textbook fee in order to cover printing costs. Students are not required to purchase the textbooks, but it is recommended if you are planning to become certified.
Luangphor Viriyang’s purpose in creating this course is to help people to understand their meditation experiences by building a solid foundation through theory and practice. If enough people develop a consistent meditation practice, world conflict will be reduced. He says that the main goal of meditation is to accumulate mind power. With increased mind power, people can control their emotions, reduce violence and increase harmony in relationships.
The benefits of a consistent and proper meditation practice are numerous. Scientific research and individual personal experiences have been proving this for many years now. A short list of some of the benefits meditators experience is as follows:
- Increased mind power
- Decreased stress
- Enhanced peacefulness
- Happier and healthier lifestyle
- Improved physical, mental and emotional well-being
- Enhanced professional and academic performance