On Friday 8th June, the LIV (Year 7) enjoyed a visit to the International Meditation Centre, a Buddhist retreat in Heddington, near Calne. First we had a lesson on the Buddha’s life and teachings from Roy Millman, a teacher at the centre. The girls were pleased to have the chance to show off some of their prior knowledge of Buddhism, as well as learn some more fascinating details.

We went on to the meditation hall where staff and students spent ten minutes sat cross-legged on cushions trying to empty our minds and concentrate on our breathing; some of us found it easier than others! Afterwards we got a tour of the centre’s beautiful gardens and the girls enjoyed stretching their legs. One impressive feature was a Bodhi tree, taken from a sapling of the tree at Bodh Gaya, under which the Buddha is believed to have first gained enlightenment! The highlight of their grounds, however, was a stunning gold-plated pagoda, a sacred building in Buddhism. There were separate sections for the teacher and students to sit, as well as a statue of the Buddha. We finished our visit off with a delicious tea provided by the staff at IMC. Their homemade scones, cakes, brownies and fruit platter were a very welcome ending to an enjoyable and stimulating trip.

Mr Colquhoun – RS Teacher