Gad’s Hill School’s pupils got a rare opportunity to meet Buddhist monk, Kelsang Wangchuk, from the Jampel Centre, Canterbury and hear his message of love and compassion when he came to visit the School in Higham, Kent.

The monk looked a strange figure as he arrived in his robes. But he soon won over the students with his ‘warmth and charm’, as he chatted to the Year 4 group. He told them familiar stories about how Siddhartha Gautama became Buddha, the Enlightened One, and explained the concept of karma, leading the pupils through a guided meditation, with many of the youngsters really enjoying the experience.

Religious Education Teacher Mrs. Shelia Bell said: “The students were very attentive to his message of spiritual riches and how material riches can mean nothing if one is unhappy or driven by fear or anger. “His talk to the pupils – aged between eight and nine – focused on Buddhist ideals of peace, love and compassion and how, by increasing our own positive attributes, we can make a difference to the world and create happiness and contentment for ourselves and others. This very much followed our own classroom study of Buddhism and other faiths.”

During the visit, students were given information about his lifestyle and beliefs, how karma worked and asked some excellent questions. The monk also gave the class guidance on how to achieve happiness without material wealth.