How to live, what to do? Buddhism and Five Ethical Dilemmas

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At the heart of Buddhist practice is not meditation, as we may suppose, but ethics. Meditation practice is, however, one of the strategies in the Buddha's teaching that opens up the possibility of allowing us to see more clearly and thereby act with greater ethical awareness. Wherever we are, and no matter what we are engaged in we are confronted with ethical dilemmas, and we always find ourselves in ethical situations, no matter whether we like it or not.  This course will engage us with some of the primary ethical dilemmas that confront us in the 21st century - how to communicate in a responsible way; what constitutes ethical action in the political and social sphere; how do we lead a 'good' life when the we are faced with an environmental crisis; how important is thought and rationality in acting ethically; is there an ethics of non-self? 

Event Details


Five consecutive Sundays from 4.00 – 6.00pm on 1, 8, 15, 22 (BST) and 29 October (GMT). 

Please note that that at the end of October, the UK changes time zones from BST to GMT.  This means that the last session of John’s course will be in the GMT time zone.  To find out the equivalent time in your time zone, please find here a handy link of a website we use.


Open to all - new and experienced practitioners alike


  • The price includes a fee for the teacher, no additional dana will be requested. 
  • If you are unable to afford the rate please let us know. We will make sure that no one is turned away because of lack of funds


is both an academic and a Buddhist practitioner of nearly fifty years. Trained initially in the Tibetan Gelugpa tradition in India, he subsequently spent time in Sri Lanka studying Theravada. After doing a doctorate in philosophy, he taught Buddhist and Western philosophy and then Buddhist Studies at the University of Bristol. He went on to be Associate Director of the Oxford Mindfulness Centre, co-direct the Master of Studies programme in MBCT(Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy) at Oxford University, and teach Buddhist psychology on the same course.  John is now retired from academia and continues to teach meditation, as he has done for more than thirty-five years.