Welcome to Beyond the Temple: Simply Being Now.

I’m Tahlia Newland (author, editor, artist & contemplative) and this blog documents my spiritual path after learning that my Tibetan Buddhist meditation teacher physically, sexually, and emotionally abused his close students. I left the group and the religion when I realised that the religious philosophy they espoused had enabled the abuse.

This experience led me and the others also affected by this to re-evaluate everything we believed. We came to reaffirm the need for us to trust our own wisdom, practice kindness above all, and move, in one way or another, beyond the temple that previously held us in thrall.

For me, the focus of my spiritual path became simply being now which includes trusting my inner wisdom to guide me. This led me to reenvisage Vajrayana practice (the Tibetan Buddhist style of meditation) as Imaginative Meditation a meditation practice free of religious trappings but with all the power of the practice on which it is based.

I share my journey with the hope that it will help others to find their own way to simply being now in full awareness.

“Dwell with yourself as your own island, with yourself as your own refuge, take no other refuge. Take the Dhamma as your island, take the Dhamma as your refuge, take no other refuge. “The Buddha, Mahāparinibbāna Sutta.

The full story of how this blog came to be can be found in my book Fallout: Recovering from Abuse in Tibetan Buddhism.

Details of Sogyal Rinpoche’s abuse of students in the Rigpa organisation can be found here. Posts on Rigpa’s (mis)handling of the abuse and ongoing issues are here.

The meditative basis of simply being now can be found in my book How to Meditate Easily Effectively & Deeply.

“Do not accept any of my words on faith, believing them just because I said them.
Be like an analyst buying gold, who cuts, burns, and critically examines his product for authenticity.
Only accept what passes the test
by proving useful and beneficial in your life.” – The Buddha, the Jnanasara-samuccaya


Listening in Nature Meditation: A Simple and Effective Way to Be in the Moment

Nature meditation. I think most people probably find some kind of peace or spiritual inspiration in nature. Being in nature certainly makes meditation easier for me, and it has no religious overtones. Yay! That’s the kind of meditation I want! And there are many different ways to use nature as a spring board to a …