Hapag LLoyd [Copenhagen] invites a Dhammakaya monk to guide meditation for their employees as a wellness solution to deal with stress
Hapag LLoyd—the 5th largest worldwide cargo shipping company recently invited a Buddhist monk to guide meditation and give a wisdom talk at its Copenhagen branch on 11 November 2021 as a way to boost morale and reduce stress in handling problems ranging from the container ships to the delivery trucks in their daily operations that were brought on by Covid-19.
Ven. Pasura Dantamano, a friendly Thai Buddhist monk currently residing at Wat Phra Dhammakaya Korsør Lystskov, began the evening by explaining what meditation is—a natural process of stilling and bringing the mind back to ourselves and to the present moment. Meditation helps the mind from wandering, relieves stress, and brings serenity and calmness when handling any situation.
Ven. Pasura, sensing slight stress and tension in the workplace when he first arrived, continued describing the mind as something that can’t remain still and is hard to control. Practicing meditation is a skill of stilling the mind without using force. It has to be done gingerly and relaxingly.
He then gave a basic introduction to meditation and ways to handle distracting thoughts before inviting them to try a 15-minute guided meditation. When they opened their eyes after the meditation, they appeared relaxed and more at ease.
One gentleman said it felt like the time went by quickly and didn’t realize that 15 minutes had passed. Ven. Pasura asked them to rate their experience on a scale of 1 to 5 with 1 being the least relaxed and 5 being relaxed and at ease. The majority gave a score of 4 and the rest a 5.
Another gentleman said that his heart rate slowed down drastically as he was observing it with his smartwatch.
Ven. Pasura then guided them to an additional 30-min meditation, encouraging them to stay with the feeling of comfort as if they were chilling and staring out at the ocean. If any discomfort arises, they could just reset and start again. They meditated for 30 serene minutes.
Afterward, they were asked about their meditation experience. A lady said she felt calm and relaxed. Another said it was so comfortable it felt like they had taken a nap.
Later on, the employees had questions that they wanted to ask. Some included: If you start to feel uncomfortable during meditation, could you change to a different posture? What should you do when you become sleepy? With the pandemic, they have been working from home and would periodically pause their work—could this be considered as meditating?
Ven. Pasura pointed out that human behavior is influenced and stimulated by their environment. Therefore, being chronically stressed while working from home may lead to a sustained feeling of stress without your awareness because the working environment continues to influence you. So when you practice meditation, you are truly giving your mind the needed rest. This was really profound and opened their eyes.
After this, everyone went to have a Thai dinner sponsored by the company to create the sense that they were at the temple. While offering refreshments to the teaching monk, a female employee mentioned that she hopes they get to meditate more in the future because it would benefit many.
One of the attendees mentioned that they had invited other meditation instructors to provide them with the teachings and they were not very impressed. They found it was too complicated, unlike the simple meditation practice and explanation they had in the session today.
The branch manager indicated that he wished to make meditation a regular activity for the employees and was exploring the different options. Mr. Edwin and Jasper, the representatives from the temple, kindly informed everyone that the temple also offers meditation sessions via Zoom. This was something that appealed to the company.
🙏About Ven. Pasura Dantamano
Ven. Pasura Dantamano is a Thai Buddhist monk who has 30+ years of meditation practice and 15 years of meditation teaching. With a strong belief in “world peace through inner peace,” Ven. Pasura has been to 80+ countries to help people easily reconnect with the inner peace that already exists within themselves.
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