I have worked as a GP serving the people of Coffs Harbour for almost ten years; I am truly grateful for this experience and thank many of my patients who have been my greatest teachers.
However, new government regulations landed me in a situation where I needed to leave my group practice at Park Beach and go solo at The Health Hub. Then some more regulations came along leaving me in a situation where I can only do online appointments with people I have seen before.
After some honest soul searching, I knew the calling to begin something fresh. Something outside the system which could help me become independent if I needed to. This soul searching has given birth to a decision to pursue something I have always loved - to offer my services as a Meditation Coach.
Why Meditation Coaching?
Quite simply, exploring the meditation tradition has been a burning passion of mine for almost 20 years. Sitting still and fully exploring the inner world absolutely fascinated me, and the stories of the great meditation masters and saints - especially from India and Tibet - captured my heart.
I lived with a Tibetan Buddhist Lama in my early 20's who is now my root teacher - helping edit and co-write a few books. Later I became part of a secular meditation community in Adelaide, had a short stint in a Thai forest monastery and then came across a doctor and mentor with a burning passion to integrate spiritual realization into his practice.
I also have kept abreast of the movement to integrate meditation into health care with the emergence of the very popular Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Mindful Self-Compassion programs. And in my GP work I have journeyed into the heart of modern trauma therapies such as IFS and CRM, which use guided meditations as a foundation for trauma processing and release.
The main reason I am called to teach meditation, however, may surprise you. It is that I have never been particularly good or naturally gifted at meditating!
This has led me to explore many teachers, many methods, many traditions to really discover what is true and authentic, and what works. I have also been through many trials, pitfalls and challenges. Gradually, then, I have discovered what I have found most useful and fruitful to share with others.
I have also known a deep commitment to practice and teach the work of meditation amidst the turbulence and daily grind of relationship, family and work pressures; not in some far off peaceful retreat space or monastery. Only then, I feel, can it be real, raw and authentically transplanted into our culture.
In entering this new space as a meditation coach, I am also called to share the connection I have made with a Tibetan meditation lineage which I feel is very special - known as the Jonang Kalachakra Tradition. It teaches a heart-centred, nature based system of practice which I find truly inspiring and utterly suitable for our current time, which I hope to share in a way which captures its essence without being caught up in cultural or religious overtones.
If you are drawn to a structured or 'scientific' approach, I have helped co-create a foundational meditation course through my Buddhist group called An Authentic Guide to Meditation.
If structure is not your cup of tea, I am now offering one on one meditation coaching sessions on Monday afternoons to meet you exactly where you are. Soon I will offer weekly online meditations and regular group gatherings.
In closing, I'd like to share what I feel and know to be the essence of meditation.
Just as fish who live in the ocean are not actually aware that they are swimming though water, each one of us is swimming is a 'sea of love' - which for most of us remains hidden from our experience. Meditation is about 'love bathing' - diving into and taking a plunge in this sea of love where we can literally feel our hearts open and connect with all living beings and all things in the universe. In this way we touch upon our awakened nature and gain more and more confidence in the teachings, practices and healing work which help us unveil this fully, just like the sun coming out from behind thick, dark clouds in all its glory and brilliance.
I thank you all for the opportunity to share my love of meditation and this major change in my work direction. I pray that we will be able connect in the future in a way that is auspicious and meaningful.
Please check out my offering here: