With meditation now a part of mainstream culture, the online conversation about mindfulness has never been more interesting and diverse.
Whether you’re a curious bystander, a new practitioner, or a fully-realized bodhisattva there’s something for everyone to tune in and turn on. Here are a few of my picks:
Online Guided Meditations
If you like the structure of narrated, guided meditation, but you don’t have time to look get to an in person session, there are plenty of free resources online to choose from. Take a look at: the Free Mindfulness Project, sessions from UCLA’s Guided Mindfulness Research Centre, Insight Meditation Centre’s Audio Dharma, and Calm.com (which offers video nature scenes with a soothing soundtrack). While not a free service, basicmindfulness.com offers home practice meditation retreats taught via phone by Shinzen Young.
If you’re interested in learning more about practices or the ideas behind them, there are several meditation centres and other organizations putting out regular podcasts. Here are my top three:
New York City’s Interdependence Project broadcasts lectures and discussions with teachers from various backgrounds, and interviews with authors and guest speakers, all aligned with its mandate to promote secular practice, psychology and activism.
Radio Headspace offers a weekly podcast on how the mind works, and what it is capable of – info on mindfulness from a neurological perspective. (The site sells pay-per-service digital ‘gym for the mind’ tools, but the podcast is free, and totally secular if that’s your preference.)
Psychologist, author, and senior teacher at the Insight Meditation Community of Washington D.C., Tarah Brach, podcasts weekly talks on Buddhist teachings and practices, each ending with a related guided meditation. If you’re a novice like me, her talks for beginners might be helpful.
While not exclusively devoted to mindfulness, this is hands down the best media source on purposeful living, IMHO.
Peabody Award-winning journalist Krista Tippet’s media enterprise has grown from public radio’s most progressive radio broadcast on faith and spirituality to a broader multi-platform, cross-disciplinary conversation on human experience. Features on scientists, artists and philosophers now complement regular offerings on spiritual themes. In the archives, you’ll find interviews with leading mindfulness figures, including the Dalai Lama, Thich Nhat Hahn, Matthieu Ricard, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Robert Thurman and Sharon Salzberg.
Always happy to hear about more great sounds from the dharmasphere. Send links to any more must-hears.