Wearing a luminous robe, the Venerable Andrew Tikkhaviro led students and faculty in a state of meditation.
With 14 years of experience and with a master in computer engineering, Venerable Andrew has led meditation sessions around the world.
“I have to traveled to many places to teach; I have gone to Cuba, Malaysia and India where hundreds of people attended in one session,” said Tikkhaviro. “I hope to reach more people and more places.”
Tikkhaviro is now at Cal Poly Pomona every Tuesday during U-Hour to lead a weekly meditation group in building 41, room 11.
According to the National Center for Complementary Health and Integrative Health, meditation can help improve psychological distress, anxiety, depression and increase relaxation and overall health.
Meditations are held in an intimate room where participants can practice in a judgment-free space in the hopes to improve in meditation and be able to practice on their own, as well as live a heather lifestyle.
This has been the result as students and faculty participating meet, take their places on the floor or chairs in a circle and close their eyes as Tikkhaviro guides them.
Within the two months of the group running, students have been able to see the changes in their own personal meditation practice.
“I am better able to focus when I meditate at home,” said Carlo Brito, a fourth-year biotechnology student. “Meditating in a group setting with an experienced teacher really does make a difference, and the positive effects carry over.”
Brito has only been attending the meditation group for three sessions and is happy there is space available for students to take time off from school life and take a moment to focus on themselves.
The meditation group is free to all students and faculty members and is being offered through the Department of Kinesiology’s Health Promotion in the Mind and Heart Research Lab.
At the Mind and Heart Research Lab, students can use other resources such as emWave Pro, a training system to monitor heart rhythms, AA meetings and if students or faculty are not able to make it on Tuesdays, the lab has 15-minute meditation sessions with guided audio recordings.
According to the Mind and Heart Lab website, they aspire to educate people about stress, how to train in relaxation and control of thoughts to gain control of their emotional and physical wellbeing.
This echoes the purpose of the meditation group as well.
There is no experience needed to participate in Meditation Group; Tikkhaviro will guide participants in meditation as he instructs the steps, so any student with any level of experience is welcomed.
“Don’t think you need to be good at meditation or anything in particular to do this class, and please don’t feel intimidated by a monk dressed in Buddhist robes,” said Neal Golub, a professor in the department of mathematics and statistics.
The meditation group will also be held during finals week.
For more information, contact Alane Daugherty or Kristine Fish.
Students can also set an appointment for any of the Heart and Mind Lab services through the website: www.mindandheartlab.com.