Chaplaincy

Mindfulness and Compassion Courses

Mindfulness and compassion are well-researched and effective means of alleviating stress, anxiety, and depression, and promoting wellbeing and flourishing in ourselves and our relationships.

Up close photograph of an orange flower.

Our courses are open to all University of Edinburgh staff and students. They are intended for those who want to develop skills to deal more easily with the stresses of everyday life, work, and relationships.                                                                                                                                                                                                                

In Semester 1, 2021 

Our 8-week student course will run Wednesdays 29th September to 24th November (no session 27th October), online. 

A 5-week course for staff will run 4th November to 2nd December, in person in the Chaplaincy (subject to COVID regulations). 

For more details and to book, see below. 

  

Course Teachers 

Dr Kitty Wheater (Mindfulness Chaplain) 

Revd Dr Harriet Harris (University Chaplain and Head of the Chaplaincy Service) 

  

Courses Autumn 2021 

Mindfulness Course for Students 

Mindfulness and Compassion Course for Staff 

  

Mindfulness Course for Students 

Book here

Online via Zoom 

Wednesdays, 29th September to 24th November (no session 27th October) 

2.30-4.30pm 

Suggested donation: £35 

Places for this course are in high demand. Please ensure when you book that you have read all the course information below. 

This 8-session course is intended for those who want to develop skills to deal more easily with the stresses of everyday life and work. It is a progressive course, suitable for beginners and those with previous experience of meditation. It is taught in 8 weekly sessions over 9 weeks, along with about 30 minutes’ daily home practice. An all-day mindfulness retreat on Saturday 23rd October is included. 

The course-book, Mindfulness: a Practical Guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World (Williams and Penman), will need to be purchased separately. The Chaplaincy offers an attendance-linked reimbursement for this (6/8 sessions). 

  

What will I learn? 

Mindfulness training consists of formal and informal practices, cognitive exercises, and psycho-education. Over eight sessions, you will learn to steady your attention, and recognise and work with unhelpful patterns of thought. We will investigate the patterns of mind and behaviour that give rise to low mood and a sense of being ‘stuck’, and those that promote good mental health, wellbeing, and quality of life. 

  

How much time will I need to commit? 

As the course is progressive, you will need to be able to commit to the duration of the programme over 9 weeks, and to 30 minutes’ home practice per day. 

  

Please note that if you do not attend Session 1 without contacting the teacher in advance, your place on the course will be released to the next person on the waiting-list. 

  

What do previous participants say? 

‘I was hesitant to sign up, but I’m so glad I did. I really enjoyed my time in class and will definitely recommend this class to others.’ 

‘This course literally changed, if not saved my life.’ 

‘Fantastic. Amazing. Life changing.’ 

  

Is this the right course and/or the right time for me to attend? 

The course is not a treatment for any specific physical or psychological conditions, and it is not suitable for people who are currently experiencing very severe problems in these areas. Before you book, please see the bottom of this webpage for more information. 

  

Mindfulness and Compassion Course for Staff

Book Here

The Chaplaincy Centre, Bristo Square (subject to COVID regs) 

Thursdays, 4th November to 2nd December 

10.30am-12.30pm 

Suggested donation: £75 

To book using your departmental training budget, or to offer an alternative donation, please email mindfulness@ed.ac.uk

This 5-week course is intended for those who want to develop skills to deal more easily with the stresses of everyday life and work, and promote flourishing in daily life. It is a progressive course, suitable for beginners and those with previous experience of meditation. It is taught in 5 weekly sessions, along with about 30 minutes’ daily home practice. An option all-day mindfulness retreat is included on Saturday 27th November. 

The course-book, Mindfulness: a Practical Guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World (Williams and Penman), is included. 

  

What will I learn? 

Mindfulness training consists of formal and informal practices, cognitive exercises, and psycho-education. Over five sessions, you will learn to steady your attention, recognise and work with unhelpful patterns of thought, and orient mental habits towards presence and appreciation. We will investigate the patterns of mind and behaviour that give rise to low mood and a sense of being ‘stuck’, and those that promote good mental health, wellbeing, and quality of life. 

  

How much time will I need to commit? 

As the course is progressive, you will need to be able to commit to the duration of the programme over 5 weeks, and to about 30 minutes’ home practice per day. 

  

What do previous participants say? 

‘Really enjoyable and helpful – will definitely recommend it.’ 

‘I felt understood, supported and had a safe space to come to.’ 

‘Thank you so much. This feels like the beginning of a journey with meditation and compassion at the end. I feel well equipped to go forward and be kinder to others and myself.’ 

  

Is this the right course and/or the right time for me to attend? 

The course is not a treatment for any specific physical or psychological conditions, and it is not suitable for people who are currently experiencing very severe problems in these areas. Before you book, please see the bottom of this webpage for more information. 

  

Please read before booking: 

In our experience, mindfulness training is accessible and beneficial for most people, including some who may be struggling with mental health difficulties. However, the course is not a treatment for any specific physical or psychological conditions, and it is not suitable for people who are currently experiencing very severe problems in these areas. 

If, in particular: you have insulin-dependent diabetes; you are currently experiencing severe depression or anxiety; you have previously experienced psychotic or manic episodes; or you have recently experienced a close bereavement, please contact the Mindfulness Chaplain to discuss whether this is the right time for you to take the course, or how we might best support you to undertake it. 

  

For students or staff members who are receiving funding from their school/ department to attend this course, or who wish to offer an alternative donation, please email mindfulness@ed.ac.uk directly to arrange this.