I have been a student of Sri Chinmoy since 1999, and have been practising meditation ever since. As well as my own personal meditation practise, I sometimes give meditation classes in Oxford and Yorkshire. I studied PPE at LMH, Oxford University and work as an economics teacher and writer.
I was born in Runnymeade, England, but spent most of my time growing up in Menston, near Ilkley, West Yorkshire. When I was young, I did a bit of cycling and cross-country running, but not with any great dedication.
When I was 18, I went to Oxford University to study PPE (Politics, Philosophy and Economics). At University, I became aware of a much greater range of ideas and interests. It was here that I became interested in spirituality, meditation and Eastern philosophy. My first attempts to meditate on my own were not particularly successful, but after seeing a poster for free meditation classes offered by Sri Chinmoy Centre, I went along to the course.
Student of Sri Chinmoy
Sri Chinmoy at my old Oxford college - Lady Margaret Hall (2003)
I found the meditation very beneficial and felt those giving the class were very sincere. I loved meditating on the photo of Sri Chinmoy and felt a great affinity to his writings. I had read many books about other spiritual Masters, but felt Sri Chinmoy was my teacher - so I applied to be his student and was accepted.
"When we meditate, what we actually do is enter into a vacant, calm, still, silent mind. We go deep within and approach our true existence, which is our soul. When we live in the soul, we feel that we are actually meditating spontaneously"
- Sri Chinmoy 1
As a student of Sri Chinmoy, I've found that meditation has given me some wonderful and unexpected experiences. I wrote an article here on some of my personal experiences of meditation. (Things I have learnt from meditation)
I was very fortunate to meet with Sri Chinmoy on many occasions. Two or three times a year, I would travel to New York where Sri Chinmoy was based. I also met Sri Chinmoy in other locations such as Oslo and Malaysia when he was travelling there. Sri Chinmoy frequently travelled around the world to offer Peace Concerts, and meet with foreign dignitaries.
It was always uplifting and inspiring to meditate in person with Sri Chinmoy. You could see and feel Sri Chinmoy entered into very deep states of meditation, which gave you much greater faith in your own potential meditation.
As well as silent meditation, Sri Chinmoy advocates the role of spiritual music for giving an experience of meditation.
"When we listen to soulful music, or when we ourselves play soulful music, immediately our inner existence climbs up high, higher, highest. It climbs up and enters into something beyond."
- Sri Chinmoy 2
I'm not the greatest singer, but get a lot from learning the many songs of Sri Chinmoy and listening to music performed by Sri Chinmoy or members of the Sri Chinmoy Centre.
In my spare time, I like to do some photography. I particularly love taking photos of Oxford, which is a very beautiful city.
Oxford at Sunset.
When I took an interest in the spiritual life, I completely gave up sport because I didn't see any connection between sport and spirituality. But, Sri Chinmoy's philosophy is completely different; Sri Chinmoy states the outer life and inner life must go together, and he believes sport can play a significant role in an integral spiritual life. When I was 26, after five years of being a student of Sri Chinmoy, I started to enter some cycling races and found I did quite well. Since sport was so important to Sri Chinmoy, we re-started the Sri Chinmoy Cycling Team. (in the 1970s, Sri Chinmoy and many other members of the Sri Chinmoy centre competed in a 24 hour cycle race in New York). Since 2006, I have raced for Sri Chinmoy Cycling Team, winning over 40 races. In 2011, I won 20 out of 30 races, and finished 10th in the British Time Trial Championship. I have also finished 4th in the National 100 mile time trial championship and 4th in the National hill climb championship.
Some articles on meditation I have written:
- Introduction to Meditation
- Basic Steps for Learning Meditation
- How to Control your Thoughts
- Seven Steps to Inner Peace
- Things I Have Learnt From meditation
I have written two books:
|Happiness Will Follow You - Practical guide to self-improvement. More info on Happiness will Follow You|
|My Life With Sri Chinmoy - a book about my experiences with Sri Chinmoy and the spiritual life.|
I work on various websites including.
- Self Improvement Blog - weekly article on spirituality and self-improvement
- Poetseers.org - Selections of spiritual and illuming poetry
- WriteSpirit.net This was created by merging a few sites so has quite an extensive range of articles, plays, stories, talks, writings and poetry.
- Tejvan Blog - some amateur photography
Amateur Video of Me and Bahumanya
- 1. Sri Chinmoy, Meditation: Humanity's Race And Divinity's Grace, Part 2, Agni Press, 1974.
- 2. Sri Chinmoy, God The Supreme Musician, Agni Press, 1976.