Okay. So maybe Montreal didn’t make a name for itself because of its beautiful white sandy beaches, it’s still one of the most laidback, relaxing urban centres around.
No need to keep to the right on the subway escalators as people fly past you — violently knocking your purse, arm, or shoulder along the way. In fact, by no means whatsoever do I want to brag, but Montreal was just named one of the TOP 10 HAPPIEST PLACES IN THE WORLD BY LONELY PLANET
, and it’s not for nothing.
Happiness is a life-long quest for the majority of us, and probably one of the main reasons why we travel….to get away from it all, to escape the stress of daily life, unhappy jobs, bad breakups and piles of dirty laundry.
So while you’re travelling, why not set time aside for a little meditation session — especially a free one? I know. The words boring and new age might be going through your head right now, but meditation is actually a great way to find the inner peace you’ve been seeking and this trip might just might be the perfect excuse you need to start doing something about it. I tried the free group meditation sessions at Montreal’s Kankala Centre….here’s my take on it!
First off, let me put it out there. Meditation is hard. Maybe it’s not for everyone, but for me it is. With practice, I know I’ll get better at it, but seriously…shutting off all that internal noise and putting all my thoughts on mute is challenging.
For a long time, I knew that Montreal’s Buddhist Kankala Centre offered free meditation sessions during lunchtime because it’s located where two of my favourite Montreal neighbourhoods meet (Mile End and The Plateau). Yet, no matter how spiritual I considered myself, the truth is, I was scared of going.
You see, I’ve tried meditation at home, but after two minutes of painfully trying to empty my mind (and failing), I knew I could get up and do something else.
But today, I literally took my fear by the horns and joined a group of 20 strangers for a free meditation session. We sat on our little round cushions, and we breathed, guided by our teacher who gave us some insightful tips, such as visualizing a dark black cloud as we exhaled and emptied our mind of negative thoughts.
I will definitely go back to the meditation centre — it was a great experience for me. You’ll need a basic understanding of French to get the most out of it, but don’t let that stop you from going. The teacher doesn’t really talk that much.
Some more important info you should know is that you really do not have to be Buddhist to participate. The Kankala Centre is open to people of all ages, sexes and beliefs. All you need is love in your heart and an open mind.
Free Meditation Sessions
Every Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays
From 12h15 to 12h45
835 Laurier East
PS. There’s many more classes too! The price is based on personal donation. For the full schedule visit the KANKALA CENTER WEBSITE.