Meditation for Challenging Times

Relating to our Planet with Wisdom & Compassion:
with Madeleine Recknagel 

1.30-3:30pm Sunday November 26th 2017


TopicTaking Dhamma Into the World – Relating to our Planet with Wisdom & Compassion

This is the seventh meeting in this format and topic. The first ones have gone well, with group discussion deepening our understanding of the role of our practice during challenging times.

This month we have guest speaker Madeleine Recknagel, founder of the Sustainable Self and Lecturer at Bangkok University who has spent the last two years dedicating herself to reducing plastic usage in Bangkok. She will besharing how her experience of living a sustainable lifestyle is living the Dhamma.

MFCT – A regular group for meditators who want to use their practice and understanding of the Dharma to help them respond wisely to the many challenges – personal, political, environmental and social, currently confronting us. Facilitated by Buddhist psychotherapist Mary Pipes and Aarti Kapoor, a Buddhist practitioner and Director of international human rights consultancy, Embode. The group explores a different topic each month.

1:30-3:30pm @ the little Bangkok Meditation Center, Ekkamai.
 The session starts at 1.30pm,
 Free of charge and no need to book in advance 


Sunday November 26th topic

Dhamma in the World

You just do what needs to be done, leaving success and failure to the unknown… Yet such is the magic of man’s mind and heart that the most improbable happens when human will and love pull together.”   Sri NisargadattaMaharaj – I Am That

Taking our practice off the cushion (or chair) and out into the world has been a recurring theme in our meetings. So for our last gathering in 2017, we are delighted that Madeleine has agreed to share her journey with us, as well as her reflections on how the work she does on behalf of the earth, is central to her Buddhist practice.

For many Western practitioners, meditation is often seen as the whole of Buddhism, whereas – as the Buddha made clear in the Noble Eightfold Path – it is only part of the path that leads us out of suffering. Right Livelihood and Right Action, for instance, relate directly to how we conduct ourselves in relationship with this world and the beings we share it with, and both are underpinned by Right View – an understanding of the nature of reality and interconnection.

For those who would like to take the Eightfold Path as a framework to reflect on their own action in the world in preparation for the discussion, or to read further, here are some links. The first is a useful summary, the second starts with Right View and gives links to all the other aspects of the Path, and the third is a much longer piece by Bhikhu Bodhi


We look forward to seeing you. This should be a really interesting and engaged session.




Arrive from 1pm onwards for a 1.30pm start.

  • 1.30 pm Welcome and Introduction to the theme of the afternoon
  • 1.45 pm Tonglen Meditation. Each meeting we deepen further into the Tibetan Buddhist practice of “sending and receiving.” A practice that works directly with difficulty and transforms it into spacious compassion and kindness.
  • 2.15 pm Questions and feedback
  • 2.30 pm Theme of the Meeting. This varies from meeting to meeting. The topic of one meeting may lead on to the next, or group members may make suggestions. It always involves the shared exploration of a topic.
  • 3.30 pm Tea and cakes.  Please bring some to share. It’s very important we take care of ourselves at all levels.



Our regular facilitators are Mary and Aarti (when she is in Bangkok). But other group members and teachers with particular expertise, knowledge and leadership also contribute.

Mary Pipes has worked as a counsellor, psychotherapist, supervisor and trainer for twenty years in Asia and the UK. For over half of this time, she worked in a Buddhist-based psychotherapy tradition in the UK. The BuddhaDhamma has been a guiding influence in her life for twenty years.

Aarti Kapoor is the managing director and lead consultant for Embode, an agency dedicated to human rights, corporate responsibility and organisational analysis. Aarti is an experienced group facilitator and a Buddhist practitioners influenced both by the Tibetan Mahayana philosophical path and Theravada practice.


About Meditation for Challenging Times:
This group grew out of the concerns of members of the Little Bangkok Sangha who found themselves feeling shocked, outraged, scared, overwhelmed, sad, grieving and hopeless in the face of what is happening in the world and wanted to use the Dharma to guide their response. It provides an opportunity for meditators to come together and to enquire how their practice and understanding of the Dhamma can help them to respond, both internally and practically to the challenges of the current times with wisdom and compassion.

Our intention is to practice with what disturbs us, so that rather than let it divide us, it becomes a bridge that unites us – with ourselves, with others, with the world and with the Dharma. Although the focus of each meeting will be different, our overall aim is to take steps towards: 

  • Using the events of the current time as an encouragement to deepen our practice;
  • Heal inner divisions by owning, welcoming and holding disturbance with compassionate wisdom;
  • Increase our ability to be with what feels hard and thereby reduce our tendency to blame and project our distress on to others;
  • Acknowledge the universal nature of both suffering and the enlightened mind;
  • Support each other;
  • Discuss ways we might engage constructively at a practical level.

We don’t expect these meetings to provide instant solutions. However, we hope that by practicing together and sharing with friends, we’ll develop a trustworthy and reliable place from which we can respond to the world around us, and help lessen any contributions we might make towards the destructive forces currently being unleashed.


Everyone who has meditated before is very welcome. If you have any short teachings that are relevant and that you would like to share, please bring them along. They don’t need to be Buddhist or “spiritual” – just wise. Also if there are any topics you would like to explore or to lead, please let us know.



‘APARTMENTS’ Meditation Centre

The center is a 4 minute walk from Ekkamai BTS Station.

We are 9/37 Thana Aket, Ekkamai Sukhumvit 63.

Enter Ekkamai (Sukhumvit Soi 63). Turn left into the second soi (lane). Bourbon street restaurant is on the corner. We’re the third building on the right, in the ‘APARTMENTS‘ building. Go up to the top floor. See the excellent map – it is very precise!little-bangkok-meditation-center-ekkamai