Catching up with Buddha

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAStreet photography and printing and framing photographs for more exhibitions have been filling my days recently.

I’m happy to say that the Movement for Hope exhibition in London was a great success. By a strange twist of fate the comedian Russell Brand came to the private view and seemed genuinely interested in my work – see trademark “Brand stare” as we chat below.



A large crowd came which made the event quite a party.


Other exciting news is that I am going to be having a bigger joint London exhibition with the eyegaze artist Sarah Ezekiel. Money raised from that will be going to the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

I’ve also been asked to speak and show my work at “Rewired”, an event organised by Movement for Hope at the Royal Geographical Society.

It’s about a six hour round trip to London for me, which can pose logistical challenges to say the least – because of this I’m thankful that I have a local exhibition coming up of street photographs captured in my home city of Worcester.

So I’ve been busy and I still am. So much so that just “being” in the midst of all the business often feels impossible.

People with wisdom have told me “if you are a busy person meditate for half an hour a day but if you are REALLY busy meditate for an hour.” It’s good advice that requires a lot of self-discipline.


I often lack the discipline to go it alone and need mindfulness to be hardwired into me. Because of this I recently went on an insight meditation retreat at Amaravati Buddhist monastery near Hemel Hempstead.

It was a good fix of strictly enforced meditation: Up at 5.00 for the first sitting at 5.30 and sitting and other meditation for most of each day interspersed with words of wisdom from the teacher Ajahn Bodhipala. By strange synchronicity Ajahn Bodhipala taught us a meditation specifically to heal our neurological systems….I live with a variant of motor neurone disease so it felt as though she had read my mind.

The retreat was so immersive that I even forgot about Christmas until I was driving home and wondered what all the colourful lights on people’s houses were!

It gave me the chance to catch up with Buddha for a while and I learnt that in reality there’s no catching up to do.

Here’s a light-box gallery of images where I’ve attempted to express some of the experiences we can have whilst deep in meditation (click on the first image to enter a full size gallery.)

Meditation can be an interesting journey….however mindfully taking photographs and keeping a loving heart are perhaps even more beneficial.

© Miles Pilling

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