mindfulness / meditation resources

Ive found in time the search on this forum was shit but if you google whatever keywords with the word hipinion, you get what you're looking for most of the time. I mean even when they keywords aren't exact.

Postby Grendel » Thu Oct 26, 2017 9:54 pm

wildarms wrote:i’m also really into thich nhat hanh

someone called him “mr. rogers for adults” which i really like, in the endless warmth to him and gentleness and the clarity with which he distills his message

i like how much he likes mindful walking


This one https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/901 ... to_Freedom has been on my reading list for a while now, have you read it?
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Postby Grendel » Thu Oct 26, 2017 10:03 pm

And while I remember:

Here is a book I have read and found therapeutic; Martha Nussbaum's Therapy of Desire : https://press.princeton.edu/titles/8894.html

She takes you on a tour of the big Greco-Roman schools of philosophy and how the adherents tried to apply the principles in their day to day life.

Another great one in the same vein is Pierre Hadot's Philosophy as a Way of Life: Spiritual Exercises from Socrates to Foucault: https://www.amazon.ca/Philosophy-Way-Life-Spiritual-Exercises/dp/0631180338

You could probably even mine some good stuff reading Marcus Aurelius' Meditations:http://classics.mit.edu/Antoninus/meditations.html although I know the Stoic stuff will not be everyone's bag.
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Postby Robo-Chachi » Fri Oct 27, 2017 1:45 pm

Anyone else having issues with insight timer today? My home screen is blank (except for the map) and a lot of the sections under the Explore page (Favorites, Teachers, Music) won't load anything at all. I've logged out. Reinstalled. Reached out to Insight Timer on Twitter. I don't see other people complaining about it.
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Postby mini » Mon Oct 30, 2017 4:49 pm

slightly left of topic but does anyone here have recommendations or insights about silent retreats or similar programs in new england or new york area? mentioned in another thread but i had a year full of stress and loss and i think something like this could be a good way to reset. open to traveling farther for something that comes highly recommended.
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Postby whatabout tim » Mon Oct 30, 2017 5:13 pm

Robo-Chachi wrote:Anyone else having issues with insight timer today? My home screen is blank (except for the map) and a lot of the sections under the Explore page (Favorites, Teachers, Music) won't load anything at all. I've logged out. Reinstalled. Reached out to Insight Timer on Twitter. I don't see other people complaining about it.


Mine is working fine now. I know it was pretty glitchy last week though and they pushed an update to have the bookmarks show up (which weren't for whatever reason). Maybe they borked the update? Obviously try fully powering down and up your phone to see if that helps?
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Postby wolfie » Mon Oct 30, 2017 9:08 pm

Grendel wrote:And while I remember:

Here is a book I have read and found therapeutic; Martha Nussbaum's Therapy of Desire : https://press.princeton.edu/titles/8894.html

She takes you on a tour of the big Greco-Roman schools of philosophy and how the adherents tried to apply the principles in their day to day life.

Another great one in the same vein is Pierre Hadot's Philosophy as a Way of Life: Spiritual Exercises from Socrates to Foucault: https://www.amazon.ca/Philosophy-Way-Life-Spiritual-Exercises/dp/0631180338

You could probably even mine some good stuff reading Marcus Aurelius' Meditations:http://classics.mit.edu/Antoninus/meditations.html although I know the Stoic stuff will not be everyone's bag.


I’m aftually reading MA’s meditations and it’s really cool.
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Postby terrific bedwetter » Mon Oct 30, 2017 9:12 pm

theres some good things ive listened to i cant remember---- but uh,,, book...
'turning the mind into an ally' was cool. i cant remembmer much of it, but i remember just opening it to any page and reading for a minute or two and getting way more chill
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Postby terrific bedwetter » Mon Oct 30, 2017 9:16 pm

meditation is the act of punking yourself, thoughtfully
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Postby terrific bedwetter » Mon Oct 30, 2017 9:19 pm

the best part of meditation is when it feels like its going somewhere and then you spend a week thinking about that and also your back hurts
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Postby internethandle » Mon Oct 30, 2017 10:00 pm

mini wrote:slightly left of topic but does anyone here have recommendations or insights about silent retreats or similar programs in new england or new york area? mentioned in another thread but i had a year full of stress and loss and i think something like this could be a good way to reset. open to traveling farther for something that comes highly recommended.


insight meditation society in barre, MA is arguably the most distinguished western mindfulness center in the united states, at least for the vein of mindfulness teaching that has disseminated into the larger culture in the last 15 to twenty years (largely theravadan-trained westerners with an eye toward inclusivity and an openness to engagement with secular western medical and scientific communities). it was co-founded by sharon salzberg, joseph goldstein, and jack kornfield in 1975. anyway, if you can, go there! other than that i'm aware there are quite a few well-known zen centers in NE - providence zen center in cumberland, RI, and zen mountain monastery in the catskill mountains come to mind.

kornfield left shortly after helping to start IMS (salzberg and goldstein are still there) and went on to establish spirit rock here in CA, where i did my first retreat in september. it was only a 3 day (which is rather short, the average is 5 days), but it was definitely helpful and confirmed my desire to want to continue with more of them. be prepared for a bit of a shock to your system as there are absolutely no distractions (there's a cell phone relinquishment ceremony, e.g.) and you aren't allowed to talk to the other retreatants (or anyone outside of a necessity or emergency), so quite a bit can come up. also do not expect that you necessarily will have a profound experience, but again, a lot may become more noticeable in the "container" of the retreat. how judgmental i am really screamed at me, e.g., in a way i had next to no awareness of without that environment to help facilitate my uncovering as much.
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Postby internethandle » Mon Oct 30, 2017 10:03 pm

oh also it forced me to see how much walking meditation rules.
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Postby largecrow » Sat Dec 02, 2017 3:57 pm

internethandle wrote:
mini wrote:slightly left of topic but does anyone here have recommendations or insights about silent retreats or similar programs in new england or new york area? mentioned in another thread but i had a year full of stress and loss and i think something like this could be a good way to reset. open to traveling farther for something that comes highly recommended.


insight meditation society in barre, MA is arguably the most distinguished western mindfulness center in the united states, at least for the vein of mindfulness teaching that has disseminated into the larger culture in the last 15 to twenty years (largely theravadan-trained westerners with an eye toward inclusivity and an openness to engagement with secular western medical and scientific communities). it was co-founded by sharon salzberg, joseph goldstein, and jack kornfield in 1975. anyway, if you can, go there! other than that i'm aware there are quite a few well-known zen centers in NE - providence zen center in cumberland, RI, and zen mountain monastery in the catskill mountains come to mind.

kornfield left shortly after helping to start IMS (salzberg and goldstein are still there) and went on to establish spirit rock here in CA, where i did my first retreat in september. it was only a 3 day (which is rather short, the average is 5 days), but it was definitely helpful and confirmed my desire to want to continue with more of them. be prepared for a bit of a shock to your system as there are absolutely no distractions (there's a cell phone relinquishment ceremony, e.g.) and you aren't allowed to talk to the other retreatants (or anyone outside of a necessity or emergency), so quite a bit can come up. also do not expect that you necessarily will have a profound experience, but again, a lot may become more noticeable in the "container" of the retreat. how judgmental i am really screamed at me, e.g., in a way i had next to no awareness of without that environment to help facilitate my uncovering as much.


I just saw Jack Kornfield give a talk at kripalu this summer, pretty insightful dude.
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Postby deep blue meanies » Sat Dec 02, 2017 5:14 pm

'after the ecstasy, the laundry' by kornfield is a good read
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Postby internethandle » Sat Dec 02, 2017 5:41 pm

yeah i just saw him speak with jon kabat-zinn and trudy goodman (his wife) at insightLA's anniversary thing about a month ago now. was very good! the wise heart is my favorite jack book.
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Postby Robo-Chachi » Thu Jan 11, 2018 12:56 pm

I've gone through a fair amount of books the last few months, from Siddhartha to several Thich Nhat Hanh to "Hardcore Zen". I feel like I need to take a break from the reading and just focus on my actual practice for a couple of months. I liked the Thich Nhat Hanh books enough, but can't see myself buying into the "if you find yourself angry, eat a tangerine and take the time to really appreciate it. It's beautiful!" frame of mind. I'm just trying to not want to murder people.

For those of you who have Amazon Prime and therefore free access to some Audible content, Beyond Happiness: The Zen Way to True Contentment by Ezra Bayda is available to listen to for free on there. I wasn't expecting much, but got a great deal out of it. Primarily with accepting the world how it is, rather than how we think it should be and other entitlement issues. Just that has really helped me to contain (or avoid altogether) my anger lately. That and being more conscious of when my mind is stuck in the past or future for too long, rather than the present.
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Postby transitive » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:12 pm

snuggle wrote:I have been meditating for years and occasionally go to zen centers. Recent personal events in my life have sent me grappling with spirituality in general, from fringe to organized...what path to take? I love many aspects of Buddhism but the aspect of it being an imported religion or path turns me off a bit. And I do get a sense the American teachers and authors are a lot different but I can’t entirely put my finger on as to why. Also for some reason a LOT of the big westernized Buddhist teachers turn me off, they seem kind of fluffy or something. Could be my issue. I never stepped foot into a church as a child but my daughter is going to catholic school and I am exploring Catholicism. There are a lot of things that infuriate me about it (they have lobbied millions to extend statute of limitations in cases of sexual abuse, wtf) which I find unacceptable. Yet so far the community aspect is rich at the microcosm and they actually DO things volunteer wise and have the cash to do it. It’s a far cry from how I spent my last decade of my life tied to an insular cult like group. I’m not joining it but it has opened my eyes to an area of America I’ve never been open to witnessing. Anyway end rant. Here are some book/author recommendations that I enjoy

Anything by krishnamurti is brilliant and really gets one to think or get in that selfless space. He doesn’t have much on meditation per se but his books are pure philosophical meditation imo. Get any of his books.

Eckhart Tolle is a great thinker. Give him a try. Any of his books. Also audio of him is hilarious

What the Buddha taught by thich nhat hanh a great intro to Buddhism in general

The dhammapadha as a “primary” ish source

Climbing the blue mountain by Eknath Easwaren wonderful inspirational essays about meditation.

Mindfulness in plain English by henepola gunaratana a vipassana perspective well written and detailed.


Catholicism is so dependent on the priests and laypeople who you surround yourself with. I was lucky in that my family took us to a relatively liberal parish that emphasized the community service and living out the teachings of the Gospel. I was also lucky in that I was taught by Jesuits, who have a very holistic and intellectual perspective on religion that emphasizes reflection and actions. So despite not having gone to Mass in a very, very long time, there are aspects around Catholicism, especially in the more mystical realm, that I find fulfilling.

In contrast, my wife was raised in a large Midwestern Catholic family that went to a very old-school parish (Latin Mass, lots of fire and brimstone), and her perspective on religion was completely tarnished by this experience. Just a lot of bad messages about social issues and a very conservative point of view. So yeah, it really depends on the community and the parish you find yourself in.

I've been reading this book and I've enjoyed it quite a bit. Will be trying to put some it into practice.
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Postby wolfie » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:22 pm

Robo-Chachi wrote:I've gone through a fair amount of books the last few months, from Siddhartha to several Thich Nhat Hanh to "Hardcore Zen". I feel like I need to take a break from the reading and just focus on my actual practice for a couple of months.


there's a desire to read about this stuff forever and ever, as if something about it isn't clear enough, or as if you're missing something and if you study some more you'll find out what it is. let me save you some time: you're not missing anything except the fact that you think you're still missing something.

in other words you can go on and on in an exhausting search, and i realize that's what most people seem to need to do myself included, but it's actually all not as deep and mystical and intellectual as it's all made out to be. you've got it. you don't have to study longer, but you can and that's ok. but you're not missing anything, you've got it. you're it.
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Postby wolfie » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:25 pm

i mean realize you're playing a game of keep away from yourself

which is fun and rewarding

but you can stop playing that game if you want.
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Postby internethandle » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:48 pm

yeah pretty much the above, which is why i tend to try and be pretty forgiving with myself for not reading more 'dharma books.' it's really a lot more valuable to relinquish that driven/inquisitive aspect of our minds to an in-person teacher and/or group than to endlessly consume and parse more data. there's nothing to do, there's nothing to fix, there's nowhere to go, etc. etc.

if anyone wants to join chachi and i the insight timer hpn group is still just me, him, and one other person. it'd be great to have some other people.

my formal (sitting) practice has been pretty good lately - been getting more than one sit in per day most of the time - although i'm dealing with a lot of aversion in my daily life that tends to stay below the threshold of awareness unless i can manage to be really, really diligent, which tends to feel too effortful and produces more tension. i'm at least aware that the root problem is likely a lack of self-compassion and a desire to achieve that's producing a lot of internalized expectation. have wanted to take the mindful self-compassion course (MSC) developed by kristin neff and christopher germer for a long while now which has only been available locally up in santa monica (too far), but in the last five or six months it's been available online at soundstrue, so now might be the time. not cheap, though, and certainly not the only option for that sort of thing. also have a strong desire to do more retreats/sesshins - in general i'm too solitary with my practice (and my life in general) and that's often pretty complicating for people. the vice abbot of a zen center founded by taizan maezumi in the early 80's, yokoji zen mountain center, is speaking at my local sitting group for the next few sundays and this video has me pretty into the idea of going up there for something:

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Postby Robo-Chachi » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:50 pm

Oh no. I completely agree with you. Thus the break.

After so many books it's, "Yeah, OK. I get it already." The books are great for new guidance and inspiration, but nobody is reinventing the wheel here. I know where the focus really needs to be.
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Postby Robo-Chachi » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:04 pm

The Kansas Zen Center is just down the street from me. I've been tempted to check out a retreat or even their free weekly practice, but looking at the site, they are a little formal for my liking right now.

Not ready to move out of my solitary comfort zone.
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Postby wolfie » Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:08 pm

Chachi maybe I posted it already I forget but there are these wonderful Alan watts lectures on audible you should check them out. I’d start with the “out of your mind” collection. He’s good at cutting through the bullshit and is also real fun to listen to.
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Postby blayk » Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:26 pm

Treeleaf is an all online Soto Buddhism affiliated zendo. From the main page of their website:

Treeleaf Zendo is an online practice place for Zen practitioners who cannot easily commute to a Zen Center due to health concerns, living in remote areas, or childcare, work and family needs, and seeks to provide Zazen sittings, retreats, discussion, interaction with a teacher, and all other activities of a Soto Zen Buddhist Sangha.


I haven't been participating the last few years. When I did, though, it was invaluable for the place I was at in my life. There's a lot of resources pertaining to mindfulness and meditation. Here's a link to the forum: https://www.treeleaf.org/forums/forum.php

I find many of the talks and videos extremely accessible and beginner friendly. I learned a lot about mindfulness through doing zazen with Treeleaf!
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Postby blayk » Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:26 pm

I regret that my mindfulness meditation practice faltered after my roommate teased me about it. I'm going to do a couple 15-30 minutes sessions this weekend.
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Postby internethandle » Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:50 pm

do it! i tend to notice how calming/centering sitting is really acutely after taking some time off, which is really nice and motivating. i usually assume it's because my 'baseline' elevates when i'm not sitting for a period, so the contrast to how i feel before and afterwards is more profound than if i'm sitting everyday.
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Postby bear » Fri Jan 12, 2018 10:27 pm

wolfie I know you said to not do this expecting to get anything out of it but is doing it because it's enjoyable and fun an okay reason
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Postby bear » Fri Jan 12, 2018 10:28 pm

but also I started meditating because I wanted to learn to pay attention more intently and this seemed like a way to practice doing that and is that really so bad?
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Postby wolfie » Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:55 pm

bear wrote:wolfie I know you said to not do this expecting to get anything out of it but is doing it because it's enjoyable and fun an okay reason


Sure, I think the thing is just don’t be upset when it’s not enjoyable or fun sometimes.

But this brings up a good point.... like shouldn’t this be fun? It’s always discussed so seriously, which is crazy. It’s only serious when you attach a bunch of goals and shit to it right? Drop that and it’s basically the quiet game where you get to experience your environment or whatever. But the key word is game, I think.
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Postby wolfie » Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:58 pm

I mean if you don’t enjoy it then why do it? Forcing yourself to do it in the name of having to achieve some meditation goal just fucks the whole thing up.
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Postby wolfie » Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:06 am

You ever just sit in bed with the window open and listen to the world

I think that’s my favorite. It’s like sometimes I can see the whole environment in my head in like 3D

Sound is underrated
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