Daily silent meditation at Manchester, modern-day Monastery
Each day, from Sunday-Thursday at The Monastery, there is an hour of silence between 12-1. Some days it will be in the beautiful great Nave, with its unique healing energy. At other times it may be in our intimate private chapel or even alfresco, in our soulful, healing gardens. You can stay for as long (or as little) as you like. Completely free of charge, there is no need to book, just come along, you’ll be very welcome.
This time is for you. A small gift to yourself.
Whether you have faith or not, this is an open space for you to find yourself and locate your own, inner peace. A place where you can find your own faith (or not) and where, if you wish, you can find spiritual guidance and accompaniment.
In essence, The Silence is simply a place where you can recover the stillness and beauty at the heart of your being. Being in silence and peace is incredibly healing, a rest from the fast pace of modern life and a time to slow down.
There will always be someone there present to hold the silence. There will, however, be no proscribing, or pushing our own personal beliefs into that space.
This space is yours.
What will I do in The Silence?
Should you wish to, you may use the time to simply have a rest!
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has identified that noise pollution is one of our greatest health threats. A wonderful antidote can be found at our modern-day Monastery, whose strong, sturdy walls enclose what for many is the epitome of a quiet, safe space.
Leave all your baggage, worries and busy life at the door and take the time as a space for rest and recovery. A mini escape, a sanctuary of peace and urban retreat. A chance to get away from it all and gain some peace and perspective.
Some people will use the time for silent meditation. It is estimated that we have at least 10,000 to 50,000 thoughts each day. We all know how tiring it can be to be plagued with thoughts and mental distress and it can be easy to spiral into anxiety.
Silent meditation is a simple method you can learn to turn down the thoughts. It takes a little practice, like when building up a muscle, but after a while you can learn to turn your thoughts down and let them float away (they will be back if they are important).
‘I have been meditating for over thirty years where I enjoy the healing powers of silence, my greatest revelations and ideas come in that silence. Often my biggest worries dissolve as I gain a different perspective. I owe my mental health to this practice and I honestly do not know how people manage to navigate our busy world and complex internal worlds without it’. Dr Jeannine Goh – Director of the Sanctuary of Peace and Healing
Find your inner sanctuary
A great realisation arises from discovering we are not our thoughts and that there is a restful place there within us all the time. We can all create a mini sanctuary or mini Monastery within us that travels with us continuously. We can support you in discovering and creating this inner Monastery!
‘It gives me the greatest pleasure to help people find this nurturing silence and develop their own inner-sanctuary. It is the most important well-being resource there is.’ Dr. Jeannine Goh – Director of the Sanctuary of Peace and Healing
If you are interested in some guidance on developing a silent meditation practice, please email Dr. Goh at the Sanctuary of Peace and Healing. She is always happy to introduce you to meditative practice and runs free sessions.
We have an incredible Listening Service at our Sanctuary, run by The Sanctuary of Peace & Healing, whose promise to the people of Manchester is that there will always be someone here, who cares and wants to listen you.
Is silent meditation better than guided?
Many meditation practices help you calm down what is often called the ‘monkey mind,’ busy rattling off 10,000-50,000 thoughts each day. Imagine if 10,000 – 50,000 people spoke to you in one day! That is what we are dealing with internally every single day; no wonder you feel so tired, so often!
The goal of meditation is to learn to witness or turn down those thoughts. What happens when we turn down the thoughts is that we experience something rather wonderful; a serenity, a peace and a silence. We know that this silence is both incredibly nourishing and healing.
The power of silence
A common thread throughout all spiritual practice and experience is contemplation, some form of meditation, prayer and/or silence. This is not without reason. Some would say that within that silence, a transformative space arises through which we are able to access a new way of being. Silence, prayer and meditation are powerful tools in all spiritual traditions to allow a deeper connection to the source of all life. Even if you have no spiritual tradition, we all know that feeling when we’ve had a hectic day, before finally sitting down, resting and thinking, ‘ah, peace at last’!
Silent stillness is something that we all know the power of, and yet so often we move towards more distraction, noise and things – often the very opposite of what we need.
Flashes of light and inspiration
In psychology, researchers assumed that when we stop thinking that the brain would be at rest. However, neuro-imaging showed that a part of the brain called the default mode network got very busy. This part is linked to mind wandering but also flashes of light and inspiration. It is the place of genius. Albert Einstein imagined himself running alongside a light wave and this fantasy or mind-wandering led to the theory of special relativity. Kary Mullis daydreamed the idea of the polymerase chain reaction which was crucial to our understanding of how we replicate DNA.
Whilst silence may offer healing, peace and rest, in the most beautiful of ways you may well find it offers more than you could ever imagine. It may hold everything you were ever looking for in life.
A warm welcome awaits you at our modern-day Monastery. Come and experience The Silence for yourself.
Entry: free of charge
Hours: 12pm-1pm Sun-Thu each week.