Bird teacher: Helen Lai
‘Meditation is the art of doing nothing.’
Helen Lai

Helen Lai

Helen has been teaching meditation for over 15 years with the Art of Living Foundation. Helen has led meditation and breathing workshops for employees at HSBC, DFS Group Limited, the Shangri-La Group, Hong Kong Police and members of Hong Kong Jockey Club and Dynasty Club. Professionally, Helen spent most of her career life working in the retail industry. She graduated from the Chinese University of Hong Kong with a bachelor’s degree in Marketing.

When did you start meditating?

I went through tremendous emotional distress during the turn of the Millennium when stress from work was coupled with a divorce and sudden loss of my sibling. The pinnacle of pain forced me to go inside to inquire about the purpose of life. I started meditating in 2002 to tap into the source of inner strength, courage, joy and happiness. Now when I look back, I am grateful for the misery. It was the start of a profound journey of inquiring, “Who I am” and “What I am”.

Why do you meditate?

When I meditate, I repose in the self where the purest form of love, peace and happiness lies. When I am peaceful and equanimous inside, I connect with people around me with ease and I manage to move through situations in life with an unshakable smile.

What is your meditation tip?

Many people have unrealistic expectations of their meditation experience. In my teaching experience, one comment prevails which is “I can never meditate because thoughts will come when I close my eyes!” It is always the expectation or ambition which prevents one from meditating. Like going to sleep, we take some steps to prepare us for meditation. Being in the meditative state is a happening rather than a doing. With patience, proper guidance and practice, anyone can meditate to improve all aspects of life.

Book recommendations

Wisdom for the New Millennium, Celebrating Silence (H. H. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar)
Peace is Every Step (Thich Nhat Hanh)