Healing the heart-mind with insight: a path to psychological freedom 8 module online course about insight meditation. This online course is based on the book “Healing the heart and mind with mindfulness: Ancient path, present moment” (Routledge 2016) authored by Malcolm Huxter. It integrates both contemporary psychology and ancient Buddhist perspectives.
What will you learn in this course?
Format: This online course is structured into 8 modules that can be completed at a pace that is suitable for the participant. It has been recorded from a live online course conducted over 8 weekly sessions.
The live course involved: Training in mindfulness/meditation, presentations including PowerPoint, reflections, and interactive discussions. The recorded course includes everything from the live course except, with respect to confidentiality, the interactive discussion. Each module includes 2 or 3 guided meditations or reflections, 2 PowerPoint presentations, and PowerPoint slides in PDF format.
Facilitator: Malcolm Huxter is a clinical psychologist in private practice. A practicing psychologist for 30 years, he has been teaching mindfulness, insight, serenity, and the four divine abode meditation practices to the general public, a range of cultures, clinical populations, therapists, and other professionals since 1991. He began training in Buddhist meditation practices in 1975, living in Thailand as a Buddhist monk for two years in the late 1970s.
This course is suitable for anyone, lay or professional, who aspires towards the aims described in the description. Though experience in meditation will be an advantage, it is not necessary. This course will be suitable for those experiencing milder forms of stress, anxiety and depression. The course would also be helpful for therapists, educators and programme leaders wishing to broaden their skills and understanding. Given the online nature of this course, it would not be suitable for those with psychiatric conditions who may need acute care.
Health Warning: Meditation can be enormously beneficial for our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health. However, sometimes it can trigger untoward side effects. Please be aware that everything we do, including meditation, involves a risk to our mental and physical health. Even drinking water, which is essential for life, can be done in a way that is a risk. Too little or too much can be harmful. Similarly too much meditation practiced in an incorrect manner can be harmful whilst too little may be ineffective. In addition, meditation can some times uncover and make us more aware of issues we may have preferred to forget. Meditation is also like medication in that it often needs to be tailored to the individual and in the right dose. Though this course can be used in a self-help manner, if you are prone to, or suffer with a clinical condition such as severe depression, debilitating anxiety or some form of psychosis, guidance and tailoring the practices may be important for you. Even if you do not suffer with a clinical condition, it is important that you approach the exercises wisely and with moderation. Guidance and support from someone who has experience is always helpful, if not essential.
Don’t be concerned if some of the meditations do not suit you, as this is normal. In the time of the Buddha he taught different practices dependent on the particular temperament or issues of individuals or groups of individuals. It is best to bring an open mind to the learning process and experiment. If it works for you then use it. If a chosen meditation seems to be developing understanding, is helpful, leads to a sense of integration or is calming and peaceful continue the practice. If however, after giving it a good try, a particular meditation practice is not helpful, don’t be discouraged and try another meditation or way of practicing. If a particular meditation exercise causes distress that is unsettling and overwhelming, suspend using that exercise for a period and utilise coping skills that are helpful. Later, as confidence builds and it is timely, the distress eliciting meditation could be revisited in a gradual, sensitive and wise manner or put off indefinitely. If you feel you are experiencing negative side effects from meditation, don’t hesitate to speak to an experienced meditator or a mental health professional.