"Rewilding is a conservation biology term referring to the restoration of an area of land to its natural uncultivated state (used especially with reference to the reintroduction of species of wild animal that have been driven out or exterminated). Rewilding is a progressive approach to conservation. It’s about letting nature take care of itself, enabling natural processes to shape land and sea, repair damaged ecosystems and restore degraded landscapes. Through rewilding, wildlife’s natural rhythms create wilder, more biodiverse habitats" (Rewilding Europe).
The Buddha teaches that the awakened heart and mind are already present in each of us, we just need to find our way there again by cutting through greed, hatred and delusion. He compares spiritual practice to the excavation of an ancient ruin, an unearthing of a beautiful city that lives underneath dirt and vines. His teaching is the eightfold path — a trail that leads us directly to the heart of this ancient city. Our organization is named Wild Heart because we understand the practice of meditation- mindfulness, heart practice, the entirety of the Buddhist path- as a path of returning the heart-mind to it’s naturally awakened state.
Our History - Moving Around Nashville
12th South Dharma Center
(2010 - 2013)
In 2010, our original teacher, Dave Smith, started a weekly meditation group at the 12th South Dharma Center on Sunday evenings from 7:00pm - 8:30pm, called “Against the Stream”. As attendance started to pick up, Dave decided to expand the group to hold two weekly sessions, adding a Buddhist Recovery group on Wednesday evenings. Due to increasing demand, Dave eventually decided to take a leap of faith to start looking for a new location for a dedicated Buddhist Meditation Center.
Against the Stream - Charlotte Pike
(2013 - 2017)
In the Spring of 2013, Dave Smith secured a location for the newly formed religious non-profit, Against the Stream Nashville. The group eventually expanded into 4 weekly groups, introducing two peer recovery groups — Refuge Recovery. In the Fall of 2014, Dave Smith headed out to L.A. to continue his teaching and complete his training, turning over daily operations to our current guiding teacher, Andrew Chapman.
Wild Heart Meditation Center
(2017 - Present)
In the Summer of 2017, we secured a location for the new meditation center located in East Nashville. With the generous help of J’Nae Fincannon and several other community members, the building underwent renovations throughout the summer months, with the grand opening held on October 1st, 2017. The center now holds approximately 12 weekly groups and hosts special events, day retreats, and visits from guest teachers, and is also home to the Nashville Zen Center. We are incredibly grateful that the Dharma is alive and well in Nashville.