The Dalai Lama’s secret temple goes to London

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


One of the most secret sacred spaces in the world is now open for public perusal – in the middle of London. The Wellcome Collection has opened its doors to Tibet’s Secret Temple, an exhibition that features reconstructions of the intricate murals of the Dalai Lamas’ private meditation temple in Lhasa, the Lukhang, or “Temple of the Water Spirits”.

The exhibition is accompanied by a series of events, principle among which is one on “mindfulness”. And the timing is spot on: mindfulness is going through something of a boom at the moment. Promoted in the boardroom, staff training sessions, away-day weekends and as smartphone apps, mindfulness is trending. The Headspace app, for example, reportedly has over 3 million “happy users”, and mindfulness courses sell out within hours.

Faced by the rise of stress-related mental illness in the UK, the NHS has promoted mindfulness as an antidote to the “tunnel-vision” that results from modern living: a simple means of stopping a couple of times a day to reconnect with ourselves. For the NHS, mindfulness is a means to deal with a wide sourcepool of agitation and discontentment in the populace, hopefully before it peaks in psychiatrists’ waiting rooms.
Original languageEnglish
Specialist publicationThe Conversation
PublisherThe Conversation Trust UK
Publication statusPublished - 19 Nov 2015


  • Mindfulness
  • Tibet
  • Dalai Lama
  • buddhism
  • headspace


Dive into the research topics of 'The Dalai Lama’s secret temple goes to London'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this