Presence is was founded in 2017 as a single-location drop-in studio in Montreal focused exclusively on meditation, and has since expanded to two locations, offering classes, workshops, retreats, special events, off-site services and private instruction. A partnership between Andrew Rose and MindSpace–a leading local mental health organization with an emphasis on mindfulness-based therapies and training programs–Presence seeks to provide safe space and community support for everyone and anyone looking to improve their lives and reduce their suffering through the practice of meditation and mindfulness.
Our approach is rooted in the emerging science around meditation, including the fields of psychology and neuroscience. Many of our teachers are formally trained in the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program initially created by Jon Kabat-Zinn at the Centre for Mindfulness Studies at the University of Massachusetts. In a field that continues to attract greater attention and with it, more inexperienced, self-taught instructors, we believe it’s important to hold our teaching staff to a high professional standard.
That said, we are also very much aware of the roots of these practices in ancient wisdom traditions, including Buddhism, Yogic practices, and Western contemplative schools, and see value in not only providing a platform for more traditional approaches, but also creating a dialogue between them. Presence seeks to make room for many forms of wisdom and practice while still guarding against the all-too common tendency for meditation and mindfulness to become just more objects of new age consumerism.
We believe whole-heartedly that meditation can change people’s lives and have a positive impact on families, communities, and the world. But it doesn’t happen overnight, or automatically just because you download an app. If you really want to get started, do it with Presence.