McRae Health is the vehicle for my professional, health consulting and educational work. Foremost is short courses and ongoing classes in ‘Meditation for Health’. Other areas of service are health consulting, speaking and writing on person-centred, self-help, wholistic health, including stress management.
Meditation for Health means assisting you to learn to meditate and supporting your practice, in such a way that:
1. You get the most health-enhancing, stress reducing benefits from meditation,
2. You find learning to be simple and immediately practical, without unnecessary dogma, philosophies or beliefs — those things may be fine and valuable but are not part of my courses.
BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES (a short, bare-bones summary of my relevant experiences and professional development) —
Early 1970s: In my late teens & early twenties I took to meditation both from reading books and living in a Sivananda yoga centre in Auckland, NZ. Received a Diploma in Yoga Teaching.
1970s: Completed a BSc (Hons) in biological / medical sciences at University of Melbourne, and concurrently obtained a Diploma of Naturopathy from Southern School of Natural Therapies.
1981 – 1984: Living in California, I was a sometime resident or regular visitor at the Yoga Society of San Francisco. This centre was established by Doctor Sri Ramamurti Mishra, a highly accomplished medical doctor and surgeon, and equally a master yogi and author on meditation. Dr Mishra was a pioneer in integrating medical and scientific knowledge with ancient, eastern wisdom on the mind and healing. He became my teacher; it was a privilege and deep learning to sit in his morning and evening discourses, meditation sessions and have personal time with him.
1984 & ’85: Thirteen fascinating months travelling India, from the far south to the Himalayan foothills. Studied and trained at several meditation centres, from Buddhist Vipassana practice to Vedic & yogic studies. I also found myself unexpectedly teaching at one of the best known Yoga / Meditation centres in India, Sivananda Ashram, Rishikesh. There I met and was blessed by some time close to the renowned Vedantin & philosopher, Swami Krishnananda of Rishikesh
1985 – 1990: Worked with Dr Ian Gawler (author of You Can Conquer Cancer). At that time Ian Gawler had founded the Australian Cancer patients Foundation, and was running very busy support group programs in Melbourne. A cornerstone of his program has always been meditation, since intensive meditation played an enormous part in his own, remarkable recovery. I became a full-time meditation instructor with the support groups, and provided one-on-one consulting with many of the patients who came to the centres. I was highly involved with helping Ian and Grace Gawler establish the well-known Gawler Foundation residential wellbeing programs in the Yarra Valley of Victoria.
1988: Spent five months as volunteer worker and trainee at Dr Jerry Jampolsky’s Centre for Attitudinal Healing, in Tiburon California. The centre was a leading AIDs support program at that time.
1991 – 1996: Moved from the Gawler Foundation to establishing The Life Enhancement Program, with a group of General Practitioners headed by Dr Richard Hetzel, at the Whole Health Clinic in Fairfield, Melbourne. Funded by Commonwealth Government grants, we provided low-cost support groups and holistic health education for people with a range of chronic and life-challenging illnesses. I was coordinator and chief meditation instructor in the program.
Mid-1990s: Engaged in some teaching to medical students at Monash University. Dr Craig Hassed and Dr Steven Sommer, both lecturers in the school of General Practice, brought me in to run workshops with students on mind-body medicine, meditation and related topics.
1994: Co-authored & published a book, a mini-book, The Essential Meditation Guide
Written with co-author Dean Frenkel, the small book contains 10 practical, simple meditation exercises, with forwards by Dr Patch Adams and Dr Ian Gawler. Now out of print, some copies are still available from this author.
1997 & ’98: Studied and obtained a Graduate Diploma in Counselling and Human Services, in the Graduate School of Education at La Trobe University, Melbourne.
1999 – 2012: Worked in community-based mental health services in Melbourne and Geelong.
2009 – 2012: Served on the Board of newly formed professional body, the Australian Teachers of Meditation Association, now named ‘Meditation Australia’.
2012: Moved from Victoria to Coffs Harbour, NSW. Recovering – apparently successfully – from a complex, chronic health condition of the previous several years.
2013 – ’17: Conducted ‘Meditation for Health’ classes and Introductory courses at The Professional Centre in central Coffs Harbour.
2014 – ’16: Conducted in-house training in stress management and ‘Meditation for health’ at a number of local organisations.
September 2016: Self-published Freedom from stress and anxiety, a 144 page book.
August 2017: Relocated to Victoria with services, public speaking etc to be offered in Melbourne, Bendigo and other locations in the region.
August 2018: Gave a presentation at Bendigo Writers Festival on my 2016 book, Freedom from stress and anxiety.
March 2019: Launch of public meditation classes at Crusoeden Body Wellness Centre in Kangaroo Flat, Bendigo (discontinued with the arrival of Covid-19 pandemic).
Present: As per information on Homepage of this site.