About Us

Who we are and what we do

Pauline McKinnon

Pauline McKinnon –author, psychotherapist and Founding Director of the Stillness Meditation Therapy Centre.

Pauline is internationally known as the author of her personal account of agoraphobia –“In Stillness Conquer Fear”, the well loved book for children Quiet Magicand and “Living Calm in a Busy World”, a contemporary commentary on meditation in the Meares’ tradition.

Life experience – Pauline’s own recovery from acute anxiety – is testament to the effectiveness of SMT(®). As a young married woman, while experiencing panic attacks and the severe symptoms of agoraphobia for eight years, Pauline sought relief from many sources, including doctors, psychologists and alternative practitioners. Results, if any, were temporary and made no lasting difference to her condition. Almost by chance, she discovered the pioneering work of Dr Ainslie Meares. This therapeutic model brought Pauline full recovery:

“I see Stillness Meditation Therapy as the absolute foundation of personal change. I’ve seen a vast range of individuals transform their lives. I’ve worked with families too, and pioneered meditation in schools. I’ve worked in hospitals and with critically ill patients, I love working at a corporate level and I’ve assisted many through workshops for anxiety support groups locally and beyond”. My teacher training course has produced dedicated SMT teachers who continue to raise awareness of this natural and powerful style of meditation”.

Among other enterprises, in 2006 Pauline initiated the formation of Meditation Australia (MA) and that flourishing organization is leading the way in bringing reliable information to the public, authenticity to meditation teachers and extensive knowledge relating to the practice of meditation in general.  Pauline is the Founding Patron of MA and has served two terms as President.  Stillness Meditation Therapy Centre is located in Melbourne, Victoria.

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SMTC Associate Practitioners

Olga Buttigieg

Olga is a registered teacher (VIT) with over 30 years’ experience and has held various leadership positions within the education sector.  Her passion for assisting the young in discovering natural health and wellbeing led her to train as a Stillness Meditation therapist.  She is a practicing iconographer and other special interests include spirituality, conceptual art and Aboriginal reconciliation.  Olga has presented at National and International Conferences and is a skilled dialogue facilitator having trained in process facilitation and experiential learning.  She conducts personalised sessions for children and adolescents at the SMT Centre, enabling them to connect to their own inner stillness and silence – a place of growth and creativity.  She is a member of the Meditation Association of Australian and an accredited SMT teacher.

Francine Cockerill

Francine is an Arts graduate and trained counsellor with over 30 years’ experience in theatre, art and design. She has a natural affinity for the very young and blends her artistic gifts with counselling in introducing Stillness Meditation Therapy to children. Her work at the Stillness Meditation Centre and within external class situations has resulted in a wide range of therapeutic and practical benefits for her students. These include an improvement to anxiety symptoms and behavioural problems and the children’s increased ability to relax and become calm while maintaining the wonder and imagination that is part of childhood.

Francine also conducts sessions for adults at the Stillness Meditation Therapy Centre and is a member of MA (The Meditation Association of Australia).

Kaye Hakopian

Kaye is a qualified teacher and has over 35 years experience with the Victorian Department of Education including a prominent role in Special Education with the Austin School. In helping adolescents to manage anxiety and stress, Kaye has initiated and assisted at numerous Stillness Meditation Therapy workshops,  observing remarkable improvements in her students’capacity to cope with their busy lives, build resilience, manage stress and gain confidence – aptitudes which are especially necessary at secondary school level. Kaye is gifted in encouraging the positive in young adults, assisting them to develop personal empowerment as through stillness, their inner strength is realized. Kaye also conducts sessions for adults at the Stillness Meditation Therapy Centre and is a member of MA (The Meditation Association of Australia)

Lucy Louca

Lucy is a qualified Counsellor with a Bachelor of Arts and graduate qualifications in Business Management. She has been involved with the Stillness Meditation Therapy Centre for over 10 years and has completed her accreditation as a qualified SMT Practitioner.  She conducts SMT workshops and regularly assists Pauline McKinnon with presentations.  She also conducts SMT sessions for adults at the SMT Centre and consults with clients on an individual basis, assisting them in personal development and wellness. With a marketing and corporate background of over 25 years Lucy understands the pressures and stress associated with fast pace, high powered environments and is especially interested in bringing SMT programs to the workplace.  Lucy is a member of MA (The Meditation Association of Australia)

SMT Teachers off duty