It All Started With A Simple Idea
Matt Dickinson, a tech entrepreneur and angel investor, had been observing Melli O’Brien teaching mindfulness retreats for many years, hearing about and seeing the incredible transformations that people were undergoing after learning and practicing mindfulness. He was also inspired by Melli’s incredible passion for sharing mindfulness with the world.
In 2015 Matt came up with the idea to blend both of their skills and create the world’s first online Mindfulness Summit with the intention of being able to bring high-quality mindfulness teaching to the many people who could not afford a retreat, or an eight-week course, or did not have access to good teachers in their area or country. At the same time they could raise money for mindfulness-based charities by selling the Summit as a product after the free live event.
As they put the pieces of The Mindfulness Summit together, an incredible momentum started to grow and by the time it launched in October 2015 over 250,000 people had signed up for the 30-day event!
During the 30 days of the summit Melli interviewed, and meditated with, over 40 different speakers including scientists, researchers and meditation teachers from different traditions and backgrounds as the participants all followed along from the comfort of their homes. The summit raised over USD$500,000, which was all donated to mindfulness-based charities – furthering their mission to make mindfulness mainstream and bring healing to those most in need of the training.
The Feedback Loop
Matt and Melli were deeply touched by the avalanche of gratitude they received as the Summit unfolded. They received hundreds and hundreds of messages and even a bunch of gifts in the post! The stories people shared were deeply personal – of marriages saved, suicides averted, lives turned around. The feedback loop of the Summit's work continued via the charities, from stories of the positive impact of introducing mindfulness into schools, to providing support to people suffering from chronic pain.
Matt and Melli were so inspired by the effect of the Summit that they decided this journey had to continue and that they wanted to continue to serve the community that had been built.
In early 2016 Matt and Melli approached the owner of the domain name Mindfulness.com, Ozzie Gontang, with the idea of making Mindfulness.com a space online to bring together the world’s most respected mindfulness teachers to serve the global mindfulness community. Many voices. One united message and mission – to make the world a more kind and conscious place. A place for connection and community as well as a learning platform and a way of continuing to support mindfulness-based charities.
After many long chats and much consideration, Ozzie transferred the domain to Melli and Matt for $10 USD. Behind that was the commitment they made to continue to donate to organizations that have the purpose of developing and growing mindfulness worldwide.
When Ozzie purchased the Mindfulness.com URL many years ago it was with the purpose of keeping it so that it would benefit many. In passing the URL to Mat and Melli, Ozzie believed that it will benefit a world that needs mindfulness in all we do as humans.
Ozzie is now a part of the Mindfulness.com support team and together they’re committed to creating a more mindful and kind world.