Coronavirus (COVID-19) updated 20/3/2020
This page will be updated on a regular basis and included in the weekly newsletter on a Thursday. If there are any significant changes we will send out a separate email either to the wider community or just to affected participants. Please keep checking back to changes to events/programme at the Centre.
*UPDATE: 20/3/2020 – We are moving Online!
Although, like many others, we have had to close our Centre for the time being we are still delighted to be able to offer the following weekly programme for everybody to enjoy. We are so grateful to the teachers who have pooled together to make this online resource possible. As Bodhilila, Chair of WLBC, writes:
The West London Buddhist Centre is not just the physical building, however beautiful it may be. The heart of the centre is the network of people that make up our community; together we create a shared context for spiritual practice, together we create sangha.
We want to offer all these classes freely as we feel that practice can be a true support to us now. If you are able to, please consider making a one off or a monthly donation to the WLBC to help see us through this period of uncertainty.
Buddhism & Meditation
Joint Meditation with Yashobodhi and Kamalashila via Insight Timer
Everyday, Monday – Sunday, 8am
In case you’re not familiar with the app, there’s no leading – just the sense of joining others in the Sangha in simultaneous practice. Simply download the Insight Timer app, search for the group ‘KS/YB and friends’ and request to join the group.
Sangha Night Online
The Matrix of Mindfulness with Vajradaka
Tuesdays 24, 31 March 7-9pm
After a one week break from Vajradaka’s workshops we are delighted to announce that we will be continuing them online on the Zoom platform. In his characteristic workshop style, Vajradaka will explore how to apply mindfulness to mental and emotional well-being, everyday life as well as personal and spiritual development. Even more relevant than ever!
All Welcome. By Donation.
Meeting ID: 967 899 816
Meditation Space Online with Bodhilila
Thursdays 7-8.30pm starting 2 April (details to follow)
Buddhism in the City Online
Saturdays 10.30 – 12.00 starting 28 March
This is the first of a weekly virtual Buddhism in the City Class using the Zoom platform. The class will cover a range of topics focused on practicing the Dharma in the modern urban setting and is aimed at people who already meditate and have a basic knowledge of Buddhism. Yashobodhi is inviting people to email her on yb [at] yashobodhi [dot] org if they have suggestions for themes.
Yashobodhi has uploaded a talk in place of this Saturday’s (21 March) Buddhism in the City, which can be accessed using the following link.
The talk starts with a 5-minute meditation. Then Yashobodhi reflects on the situation now, about transitioning to a new format of class, about the history of the class and the themes we have covered. She also gives some tips as to how to negotiate this period of time and finishes with information about Zoom, the platform that will be used to run the Buddhism in the City Online from 28 March (see column to the right) and how to do the class online.
Our studio teachers have also moved online, here’s where you can find them:
Sophie Arditti for Feldenkrais: sophie [at] feldenkraisplace [dot] co [dot] uk
Pawel Wiacek for Qi Gong (tbc)
Charlie Merton for Sound Healing and Gong Baths (tbc)
*UPDATE: 17/3/2020 – A message from Bodhilila
A message from Bodhilila, Chair of West London Buddhist Centre:
This is to let you know that, following yesterday’s government briefing on the Covid-19 Coronavirus and taking into account the latest health guidance, the West London Buddhist Centre is now closed to the public. With the situation changing day by day and so much uncertainty about what the future may bring we do not know how long this closure will last but will keep you updated in the weeks to come.
I am aware that for many of us, coming to the centre and practising alongside others has become a central and much valued part of our lives. So, if this feels a great loss, please remember that the West London Buddhist Centre is not just the physical building, however beautiful it may be. The heart of the centre is the network of people that make up our community; together we create a shared context for spiritual practice, together we create sangha.
We will have to find new ways of connecting, new contexts for practice. In these difficult and challenging times it is more important than ever that we take care of ourselves and others, responding to those around us with kindness and compassion. I hope that as a sangha we can support each other in both practical and spiritual ways and we will be exploring ways to do this going forward.
In the meantime we will start offering a few classes online and over time will develop a library of online resources. Every Thursday we will send a newsletter with information about the classes we will be offering online and how to access them as well as links to other online resources. This information will also be posted on our website so do keep checking in.
I will write more later in the week,
*UPDATE: 16/3/2020 – Centre Closure
Following the government update today, the Centre will be CLOSED and all activities cancelled until further notice.
The team plans to work from home and is planning how we can keep the spirit of the Sangha lit through this period of uncertainty. The info [at] westlondonbuddhistcentre [dot] com e-mail address will be checked regularly and as ever, the team can be contacted for support.
Stay well and stay connected.
Lots of love
*UPDATE: 14/3/2020 – Reduced Programme
From Monday 16 March – Sunday 29 March 2020 the Studio will be closed. All classes/workshops including TRE and Gong Bath will not run.
From Monday 16 March – Sunday 29 March 2020 the Centre will run a significantly reduced programme of events as follows:
- Tuesday 7-9.30pm Sangha Night
- Wednesday 1-2pm Lunch-time Drop-in Meditation
- Thursday 6.30-7.30pm Meditation Drop-in
- Thursday 7-9pm Meditation Space
Reception will be open 30mins before a class.
The Centre will be closed to the public on Monday, Friday and Saturday and any event scheduled on these days will not run.
Kamalashila’s practice/study day for Order Members – is now to proceed online at 11am on Sunday 15 March via Zoom. Keep an eye on your emails for access details from Regional Order Conveners.
Mindfulness for Stress course starting Monday 16 March has been CANCELLED
Weekend Retreat at Othona Friday 20-22 March has been CANCELLED
Participants booked on cancelled events will be contacted separately by the organisers.
Bodhilila, Chair of West London Buddhist Centre, will send a personal letter outlining the difficult decisions facing us daily and the impact this will have on our visitors, teachers, volunteers, the team and the Centre as a whole, and also how we might be able to offer mutual support in this time. For now, we can still offer this reduced programme of events and hope to be able to provide some content online soon. Stay tuned and please sign up for the newsletter to stay in touch.
If you have any questions or concerns, please email info [at] westlondonbuddhistcentre [dot] com
As ever, we thank you for your cooperation and support at this time.
Kamalashila’s study/practice day for Order members on Sunday 15 March has been cancelled.
Hi all, sadly Kamalashila has had to cancel the session on Sunday 15 March as a precaution to the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. We will keep you informed about the other events in the series nearer the time via the WLBC website, Facebook and emails from your Regional Order convener. Thank you for understanding and take good care. WLBC Team
All other activities this weekend are running as planned.
As of 10 March 2020 we are open as usual for all activities in the Centre.
As the UK transitions between ‘containment’ and ‘delay’ phases we will continue to run our activities as usual. However, we continue to add further precautions to minimize the risk of the virus spreading which may have some impact on our team and visitors.
According to the NHS (on 10.03.2020) it is not certain exactly how the virus is spread but mostly likely through cough droplets and contact with eyes, nose or mouth. We want everybody to continue to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere at the Centre but the advice is still to be extra vigilant about hand-washing frequently and thoroughly. What an opportunity for mindfulness practice! Most importantly, this also means that for now the communal self-service tea and biscuit stations are safe! But wash your hands before you dip in please…
This page will be updated on Tuesdays after our team meeting and included in the weekly newsletters on Thursday. If there are any major changes we will send out a separate email either to the wider community or just to affected participants.
As ever, stay calm, take good care of one another and see you at the Centre!
As of 4 March 2020 we are open as usual for all activities in the Centre.
The situation with COVID-19 is changing every day and it is at times like this we can really feel how interconnected we all are. The Centre team is keeping as informed as possible using guidance currently available to us externally and expertise within the Sangha. We will be putting in precautionary measures in place to protect the health and wellbeing of all visitors to the Centre.
Below are the current NHS guidelines which we’ve adapted to minimise the spread of the virus which we encourage everybody to follow:
- wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds (a good opportunity for chanting mantras we’ve noticed that 3 rounds will do the trick!)
- always wash your hands when you get to the Centre and arrive home/next place
- use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
- cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze – extra tissues have been provided around the Centre.
- put used tissues in the bin straight away and wash your hands afterwards (do not put in recycling)
- try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
- do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
In addition to good respiratory hygiene around the building generally, we are encouraging our teachers and students in the Studio to clean down mats after each use with materials provided.
If you are feeling unwell, have recently returned from travel to a high risk area or know you have a low-immune system, it is advisable not to come to the Centre for the time being for your well-being and others’ as the spread of the virus progresses. People who think they may be affected by coronavirus need to call the NHS 111 phone service for further advice. They should not go to their GP, or A&E.
For the latest government updates on the current situation in the UK please visit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public
Thank you for your cooperation and we look forward to seeing you at the Centre.