We think of it as a spiritual practice, but in truth, mindfulness meditation is an exercise in cognitive self-examination. On the Buddhist practice as a powerful tool for all — for understanding ourselves and our enemies with more depth and compassion.
Black women are blazing a new trail for yoga — one that shatters the barriers of race, culture, and class that previously excluded them. How women of color are embracing the strength of their bodies and spirits through vinyasa flows set to Future and Gucci Mane.
Our daily lives are narratives we wrap ourselves in. But sometimes the grind keeps us from truly connecting with the world around us.
A journey of collective mindfulness with the Vietnamese Zen master, crystallized in verse.
She embodied a sense of steady gratitude regardless of the circumstances. A reflection in memoriam of police captain-turned-dharma teacher Cheri Maples.
We can’t take wilderness retreats every time we feel caught up in the world’s madness, but a poem can be a momentary reprieve.
To make the world a better place is an intimidating challenge. But what if we focused on our immediate surroundings?
The extraordinary is revered and celebrated, but where does that leave the ordinary? On rediscovering the meaning of awe, and finding it in the quiet majesty of the daily grind.
Love and gratitude can be daring, disruptive acts in a world that insists on conflict and endless craving.
Reflections on the gravity of our words, online and off; taking a stand for our own well being; and the debut of Gen Z — summoning a new generation into the working world.
A balm for burnout: self-love and a guided meditation to empower us to take a stand — literally — for our own right to be happy and whole.
An unlikely spring poem from Mary Oliver turns the dazzling darkness of nature into a lesson on embodying simple gratitude for the gifts we’re offered each moment.
Lovingkindness isn’t a sweet and soft thing. It’s a rigorous transformation of mind and spirit, and it’s the first step to cultivating a sense of connection to those around us.
A sense of mindfulness can help us recalibrate our reactions to those we judge as different or dangerous.
A simple invocation amid the world’s frenzy: that we maintain the quiet discipline of seeking delight hiding in plain sight.
The stories we tell about love and life are the root of dreams and frustration, alike. Sharon Salzberg on how “unstitching and reweaving” the narratives we hold can lead to a more generous understanding of our relationships, and ourselves.
Animated by solitude in the winter woods, Parker J. Palmer on seeing the hidden and potential beauty beneath what’s superficial in the world we face.
With the wisdom of Jane Kenyon, a contemplation on gratitude and ordinary grace in our own finite lives.
A pilgrimage of gratitude illuminates an essential connection between the private journeys we take in life and the messy path we all walk together.
An immunologist thinks through the deeper sources of election stress, and offers up cognitive and spiritual solutions to the anxiety we feel.
How can we be more present to daily joys? What does it look like to engage with each other in our fullest capacity? Questions and meditations on community and identity from voices on our radar.
Unwavering gratitude can be an intimidating ideal. Sharon Salzberg examines gentle attention to the positive as a generous alternative to our negativity bias.
A reassuring, imagined moment of silence and clarity in the face of a frenetic world, with the guidance of Sylvia Boorstein and Pablo Neruda.
Independence is seen as a hallmark of success, but is it wise to deny our connection to one another? Sharon Salzberg on how unity and compassion can bolster individual strength.
How do we enrich, rather than enforce, our historical perspective? These collected writings give a new lens on which stories serve us and where we encounter them.
In our latest Becoming Wise podcast, wanderer and writer Pico Iyer tells of a lifetime of discovering outer stillness as an essential catalyst to a rich inner life.
From our Becoming Wise podcast, mindfulness researcher Jon Kabat-Zinn on the physiological and spiritual potential of being present to every moment of daily life.
Writings on transcending social, psychological, and physical boundaries, and coming together in deeper connection with ourselves and each other.
In the world of superheroes, superpowers stand in. But in truth, the path to strength of heart, spirit, and soul is demanding, and requires us to perform feats that at times seem super-human.
In pop culture “coolness” is sometimes equated with nonchalance, isolation, and sarcasm. Sharon Salzberg asks us to rethink what it means to be “cool” and argues that kindness and empathy can be the “in” thing.
Physical presence and inner life are more integrated than we might imagine. Meditations on how we move through stress, our relationship with the body, and making meaning in the rhythms of everyday life.
“Sometimes the pain of the world seems incomprehensible. And if there’s anything that balances it, it’s wonder at the world, the amazingness of people.” Mindfulness meditation teacher Sylvia Boorstein gives counsel on finding joy and spiritual practice embedded in the rhythms of everyday life.
One of our columnist’s most influential teachers passed away this spring. Sharon Salzberg with a reflection and an homage to “a man who completely walked the talk of his values.”
Life can be frustrating, and we often react with resistance, or overwhelm. Sharon Salzberg reminds us that emotional balance doesn’t come from denying feelings, but from allowing them room to play out fully.
Sitting meditation isn’t a discipline easily acquired. A contemplation on the challenges of sitting and being still in modern life.
Humility is a virtue, but denying ourselves the happiness we deserve can be a destructive habit. Sharon Salzberg with a reflection on the perils of self-deprecation, and how we might come to relish moments of joy, fully.
Working through discomfort doesn’t mean denying our suffering. Instead, Sharon Salzberg suggests a better way to move forward: allowing ourselves to feel pain without judgment, and accepting the validity of our own emotions.
There’s comfort in the ideal of perfection. But in this pursuit, we can trap ourselves in the striving. Sharon Salzberg on accepting imperfection as the unexpected path to spiritual fulfillment.
Many of us feel cast off and and think we have to go it alone. But what if we took solace in the third refuge of the community? Sharon Salzberg with a video meditation on standing in line and counsel on how we might thrive in our connectedness with one another.
We often equate ruthless doubt with intelligent discernment. As Sharon Salzberg points out, sitting through the uncertainty can be the surest way to become present to the wisdom of our own intuition.
It can be easy to fall into distorted channels of self-doubt and self-criticism. But, rather than trying to suppress those feelings, personal empowerment may come from acknowledging, relating, and directing them may lead to a more spacious life.
Though she’s the example many turn to for guidance on mindfulness practice, Sharon Salzberg didn’t always find meditation so easy. She reflects on an early retreat in India, and what it can teach us about letting go of ideals, and having faith in what is.
The passage of time can seem like a dream. Sharon Salzberg looks back at enduring friendships and the journey “meditation” and “mindfulness” have taken these past 40 years in the U.S.
The KonMari method includes the simple act of asking the question, “Does this spark joy?” A woman testifies to the transformational potential of creating an organized, mindful space.
As life fleets by, we can get caught up in worrying about what may eventually happen. Through a story of receiving her first senior discount, Sharon Salzberg teaches us to exercise our “letting-go muscle” to be with what is.
The frenetic pace of life can be overwhelming, making ritual even more necessary. But it doesn’t have to be religious, or even spiritual in nature. Daily tasks can ground and center us, clearing our minds and helping us focus on the profundity in the seemingly mundane of this world.
We closed down studio for two weeks, but that doesn’t mean we took it easy! We built ofuros and traveled and crafted some incredible reflections on the importance of making space in our lives for contemplation, generosity, and serendipity.
In an age of iPhone and Instagram ubiquity, we capture and curate in ways unimaginable only a few decades ago. And this connects us in unexpected ways. But, it also can have a cost, one that pulls us out of the moment.
In our utilitarian age, meditation is often discussed as a means to increase focus, productivity, and cognition but what about meditation as an engine for kindness? Sharon Salzberg explores the power of compassion and kindness to meet with abundance the suffering of the stranger.
Each one of us has a “constellation of tendencies,” but often we identify more strongly with a certain set of responses. By identifying our dominant personality type, we can see these tendencies in their purified and unpurified forms — and find a world of options opening up as we become more aware.