We are the Worcestershire branch of the Awakened Heart Sangha – an international Sangha with its base at The Hermitage in North Wales and local groups throughout the UK. The Sangha was founded by Lama Shenpen Hookham who has over 50 years experience of the Mahamudra/Dzogchen traditions of Tibetan Buddhism.
Lama Shenpen devised a distance learning course especially for Westerners, called Living the Awakened Heart Training – a comprehensive and structured training in Buddhist meditation, reflection and insight, enabling her students worldwide to explore some of the most profound Buddhist teachings from the Mahamudra/Dzogchen traditions of Tibetan Buddhism.
The original local Worcester group was established in 2006 by a Tai Chi and Dharma teacher Alan Smith, a longtime student of Lama Shenpen Hookham and her teacher Rigdzin Shikpo. The group began as the Worcester Awakening Heart Buddhist Group, an open meditation group. After Alan stepped back from teaching the group – now made up of members of the Awakened Heart Sangha and all students of Lama Shenpen – naturally evolved into the local AHS Worcestershire group. We’re very grateful to Alan for starting the group and for all his teachings over the years.
Some of us get together weekly in Worcester on Wednesday evenings for a group meditation session, followed by a Dharma discussion. We use the Discovering the Heart of Buddhism course, the first part of Lama Shenpen’s Living the Awakened Heart Training, as a focus for our discussion and practice. The beauty of this course is that it requires nothing but your own experience to take part in the discussions.
We hold regular meditation days as well as pujas (prayer and meditation sessions) and feast offerings. We also invite teachers from the AHS to the area to teach, as well as visit The Hermitage in North Wales to attend retreats and teachings days, and attend other AHS teaching events around the country.
We hope to offer more open meditation sessions and events for the wider, Worcestershire community in the future.
If you are interested in learning about Tibetan Buddhist meditation and training within the Awakened Heart Sangha visit the main Sangha website or feel free to contact us via our Contact page. Get in touch if you’d also like to join our mailing list to be notified when there’s more open sessions.
For more information about the Awakened Heart Sangha online and around the country, see the Community page for all the Sangha links.