BIM Logo Bristol Insight Meditation

Many of our in-person events have now been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak. However we are gradually re-establishing some in-person events as the coronavirus restrictions gradually ease. Please keep an eye on this page on our website for the latest notifications from Bristol Insight. Things are unfolding rapidly and the well-being of our sangha and the wider community are our principle concern. At this time we aspire to act according to the principles of the dharma with non-harming, kindness, compassion and equanimity. Where events are cancelled we will aim to offer online alternatives where possible to maintain our sense of community and mutual support.

Tuesday Sitting Group

We are offering an online Tuesday sitting group using Zoom.

If you wish to participate in these online sessions then please email for the Zoom link.

The session will open at 7:15pm for a 7:30pm start.

We will begin with a meditation session of about 30 minutes followed by a short break. Then in the second half we will have our Cultivation of Practice sessions. This part of the Tuesday evening sitting group invites us to engage in a variety of activities that aim to deepen our practice in the company of others. These activities may include movement, reflection, discussion, mindful sharing in pairs or in small groups. You can find our present activities by clicking on the link below.

Cultivating our Practice Jul-Sep 2020

All are welcome.

Our next online retreat
Stretching the Heart -Liberating the Heart
12th September 2020
With Kirsten Kratz
There are many ways to conceive of “Heart”. In the Buddhist teachings it is often referred to as “Citta”, the “Heart-Mind” that resonates, is sensitive, responsive and malleable; it is also that which can be liberated. Attending to Heart-Mind we may discover its innate capacity for wisdom, kindness and compassion, its yearning to attend to, hold and address what is difficult … as well as what is beautiful. And at times our Heart-Mind is asked to stretch in the face of all kinds of challenges, both personal and collective. How might we live life if we dared to really honour and follow the deepest wisdom of our Heart-Mind?
During our day together we will explore the Heart’s capacity to open in ways that nourish and empower, that bring forth compassion and a sense of joyful duty.
There will be alternating periods of sitting and walking meditation, instructions and guided meditations and reflections.
You will have the opportunity to connect throughout the day into three sessions:
The day will start with a Gaia House “Online Meditation Hall” session from 9.30 – 11am that will form the basis of our day of exploration. Please attend this session if you like to get the most out of the day.  You can arrive from 9.15 to have a bit of time  to settle in before the start at 9.30am.  (

This will be followed by two more sessions organised by Bristol Insight from 11.45 – 1.00 and 2.30 – 4pm. Again it may be helpful to arrive a little bit early to settle in. (You will be given a different Zoom link to join these sessions.)

The first session is free as it is a regular event hosted by Gaia House.

There is a cost for the two Sessions hosted by Bristol Insight of £15 waged and £7.50 unwaged (plus Eventbrite booking fee) this covers the Zoom fees and the Bristol Insight administrators fees.

We ask for dana (donation) to be given on the day to cover the cost of the teacher so please give dana direct to Kirsten through her PayPal account: her PayPal account:
Kirsten Kratz
Kirsten has practised Buddhist meditation in Asia and the West since 1993. She started teaching in 2006. One of her particular passions is exploring how wisdom teachings can foster appropriate responses to the challenges of our time; she supports those on personal retreat in Gaia House. Kirsten  is co-initiator of the Dharma Action Network for Climate Engagement: DANCE and in one of the guiding teacher of ‘freely  given retreats’ (

How to Book

You can book through Eventbrite by clicking on this link:


Nature meditation in the time of Covid: Sunday 13 September 2020 2-5pm

Fancy practising outdoors? Do you want to sit with others face-to-face and stay safe? Are you missing connection with nature and other practitioners?

We might have a solution for you!  Bristol Insight Meditation is offering nature meditation retreats in a privately owned wood about 6 miles outside Bristol. We will meet at the woods to carry out sitting, walking and nature-based practices for about 3 hours.

These woods are really special. There is sufficient space to keep 2 metres apart at all times yet stay in a circle. Even better, the woods have several large covered areas, so the event will go ahead regardless of the weather. The facilities also include easy car parking and even a compost loo! You will need to bring water, something soft to sit on and whatever you need to practice (e.g. stool, cushion, blanket) and wear appropriate clothing and shoes.

The cost per person is £5 to cover the woods hire.

For further information and directions to the site, please contact Lesley Wye on


Bristol Insight Virtual Self-led Retreat Saturday 5th September 10.00am-17.00pm

Perhaps more than ever, we’re all profoundly aware of the power of community and the human need for connection. Confined within small spaces and juggling various unexpected stresses and strains, there’s a need to find some kind of spaciousness. Insight meditation can help us achieve that.

We’re using Zoom for a morning get-together and a facilitated end-of-day sharing session. We hope as many of you as possible will join us from home at the times listed below. These sessions will be FREE. You don’t have to complete a full-day to take part, please feel free to dip in and out as works for you, knowing that others all over the South West are with you. We just have a hunch it can be powerful when we come together in this way. Please see the suggested schedule below.

10:00 – Start the day with us via Zoom. For the Zoom link and password for this retreat please contact Chris on Self-led Retreat
Zoom works on computers, tablets and smartphones. For the latter two, you’ll need to download the ‘Zoom Cloud Meetings’ app in advance from your app store. If you’re using a computer, please allow a few minutes to set up as Zoom first needs to download and install a small client to run. Simply follow the on-screen instructions.
10:30 – Sitting practice
11:15 – Walking/free practice
12:00 – Dharma talk
13:00 – Lunch (feel free to maintain silence if it’s practical)
14:00 – Walking/free practice
14:15 – Sitting practice (indoor or outdoors if possible)
15:00 – Walking/free practice
15:30 – Sitting practice
16:15 – Join us via Zoom for reflections on the day

17.00 – Day ends

For more information, please contact David Ringsell on

With loving kindness from the Bristol Insight Self-led Retreat Team.


Chris Cullen’s retreat (21/3/20)

We had our first on-line retreat with Chris Cullen with over 30 participants online. We much appreciate Chris’s heartfelt response to the present unfolding situation and his offerings for practice at this time. You can listen to an audio recording of this online retreat with Chris Cullen here:


Bristol Insight WhatsApp group 

We also have set up a WhatsApp group to help us keep in touch. If you wish to join this group then click on this link Join group


Dharma resources to help us navigate these turbulent times

Zohar and Nathan have recorded some talks and meditations “to help us all respond to coronavirus and it’s effects.”
Coronavirus and the support of the Dharma – Part 1 by Zohar Lavie
Guided meditation: “Coronavirus and the support of the Dharma – Part 2” by Zohar Lavie
Guided metta meditation from Nathan

There’s a good online talk relating to responding to the virus from Jack Kornfield


Gaia House online practice opportunities

While we cannot gather in person, Gaia House will be creatively exploring how we can support and nourish each other. In the coming days and weeks, we will let you know what online practice opportunities we are helping to coordinate.

Online Sitting Group

Our Online Sitting Group meets every Monday, 8-9pm (UK BST).

The group is facilitated by Gavin Milne and guest teachers.

The schedule for the next few weeks is:

7 September – Yahel Avigur
14 September – Gavin Milne
21 September – Suvaco
28 September – Yahel Avigur

The group is suitable for all levels of experience, although some familiarity with Buddhist teachings and prior experience of either an evening course or a retreat will be assumed.

You are welcome to join on any dates that suit you, although we ask you to attend for the whole of each meeting.

Click here to find out more and join a meeting.

Gaia House Online Dharma Hall

Gaia House is opening an online Dharma hall: a new space for connection, reflection, and refuge. A place where we can share the Dharma and practice together, supporting us to meet our lives and our world in these times.

w/c 31st August

Tuesday, 1 September-  7:30pm Leela Sarti
Wednesday, 2 September – 11:00 am Walter Young (CDL)
Thursday, 3 September – 11:00 am Ella Titman Tamari (CDL)
Saturday, 5 September – 5:00pm Nathan Glyde
Sunday, 6 September –  9:30am  Zohar Lavie

Tues 8 September-  7.30pm Yahel Avigur
Wed 9 September – 11.00 am Sari Markkanen (Community Dharma Leader)
Thurs 10 September – 11.00 am Ella Titman Tamari (Community Dharma Leader)

The sessions take place at the same time each week and last between 1 hour 15 mins and 1 hour 30 mins. You can check the web page to see which teachers and Community Dharma Leaders are leading the sessions.

The sessions will be held by Gaia House teachers and Community Dharma Leaders. Each online meeting will include some meditation, an exploration on a theme that connects Dharma practice with the current situation, and some time for interactive sharing with the community online.

We hope this can be a space that supports us all to turn towards what is difficult, and find ways to respond to ourselves, others and the world with compassion and wisdom.

The meetings will be held via the easy to use Zoom platform. To join any of the meetings click here.

Dana is invited both for Gaia House (the ‘General Fund’) and for the teacher running the session. To offer Dana related to this offering, please click here to visit the Gaia House website where you can make a one off donation. Please note that you will need to click on the ‘Add to basket’ button for both the teacher and for Gaia House. To ensure that Teacher Dana reaches the teacher, please specify in the notes section on the checkout page the name of the teacher you are offering to. Thank you for your generosity.

May our practice together support the welfare of all beings.

Later this month and next at Gaia House

Opening for registration soon:

22-27 September:
The Poetry of Self, The Poetry of Not-Self
With Kirsten Kratz and Yuka Nakamura

1-4 October:
Yoga and Meditation: Awakening in Stillness and in Movement
With Martin Aylward and Gail Aylward

12-14 October:
Abiding with a Heart Imbued with Love
With Catherine McGee and Gail Aylward

17-22 October:
Embodying the Awakened Heart
With Yanai Postelnik and Leela Sarti


Bodhi College Online – Early Buddhism for today

Bodhi college are offering an ongoing series of online talks and practices entitled “Thinking Out Loud: Conversations on Early Buddhism”.


Sangha Live

Sitting Together, Staying Home

These are unique times. Now more than ever people are seeing the value in connection and building communities online. It’s perfectly natural to feel fear and anxiety. Yet, we have a supportive antidote to self-isolation. Every weekday until the COVID-19 lockdown ends we are going to be running live online meditation sessions.


Online offering from Bhante Bodhidhamma

Bhante Bodhidhamma is offering a Lockdown Evening Meditation every evening from 8-9.30pm (BST).

To connect click here


Spreading the Karuna virus

“In the beautiful Karaniya Metta Sutta (on loving kindness), the quality of protecting others from harm (even as a mother would protect her only child) is greatly emphasised. I would therefore gently encourage everyone to keep well informed and take as many value-aligned precautions as personal conditions allow. Let’s learn from other nations and each other, and do our best to collectively spread the Karuna (Compassion) Virus to all beings, instead!” – Venerable Canda