Established in 2005 at Georgetown University in Washington DC, the John Main Center for Meditation and Inter-religious Dialogue (JMC) has pioneered the World Community’s involvement in meditation and Higher Education.
Founded in Christian faith, the JMC is dedicated to introducing meditation to students as a common ground found in all faiths and wisdom traditions. It is a point of dialogue and convergence for all religious and secular approaches. The JMC focuses on the integration of meditation into the life of students and faculty in the university community. It accesses contemporary research in education and other fields such as business and healthcare. It is committed to developing an ecumenical community of meditation, inspired by the teaching of John Main.
The JMC also serves as a key component of the WCCM outreach to young adults. Universities and colleges serve as primary meeting places of young adults between the ages of 18–32. At Georgetown University, the JMC runs the McSherry Building Meditation Center for faculty, staff, students, and neighbors. The McSherry Building is centrally located on the main campus and hosts multiple regular meditation sessions daily. The JMC also sponsors a living–learning community on Magis Row called Contemplation-In-Action House(s). This is a small undergraduate community of four men and four women in two separate townhouses near campus. The students help organize meditations, promote events, and live in a house with fellow students committed to contemplative life. In the wider Academy, the JMC visits and networks with other universities and colleges to develop meditation groups, programmes, courses, and even centres on their campuses.
The JMC furthers WCCM’s scholarly dimension. The JMC collaborates with the John Main Archives held at Georgetown University’s Special Collections. The archive functions as the formal depository of John Main’s works, as well as the history of the WCCM. The JMC also hosts a John Main Lecture each semester with leading scholars such as Charles Taylor and a Good Heart Dialogue for inter-religious issues among the student body. It also facilitates courses and workshops such as the Business of Spirit Seminar and the MBA Course on Meditation and Leadership at the McDonough School of Business and works with the Georgetown University Medical School to raise the awareness of the place of medicine in healthcare.