Meditation

  • Meditation Month, Day 22: Buddhist Black Sheep Paid Member

    I'm my family's Buddhist black sheep. When I decided to go to Nepal some years ago to study at a Tibetan Buddhist shedra, my parents and most of my friends, none of whom are particularly religious, thought I was nuts. Granted, they were entertained—never have my Facebook statuses, which mostly centered around monks playing badminton with me, been so popular—but no one took it very seriously. When I came back from Nepal and my loved ones noticed that I was, as a matter of fact, very serious about Buddhism, I was treated to a series of lectures about what my friends and family viewed as the worrisome trend of my declining ambition. (Actually, that's putting it a lot more eloquently than it was in reality. It was more of a derisive, "What are you going to do, Emma? Be a Buddhist as a career?") More »
  • Meditation Month, Day 21: Acknowledging Anger Paid Member

    It was only a few years ago that I realized just how angry I was. I had been immersed in Buddhist practice for some time, but was in the habit of glossing over the token “Anger” chapter in Buddhist practice literature. In Tricycle’s “Dealing with Anger”-type articles I would maybe read the pull quotes and move on to the next piece. I would acknowledge a point well made, but operated under the entrenched assumption that it didn’t really apply to me, or that if it did, it wasn’t the main area I needed to focus on; there were other qualities and realizations and mental states that required development and my immediate, unwavering attention. More »
  • Meditation Month Paid Member

    It's meditation month! Throughout February we'll be offering tips and advice from your favorite Buddhist teachers on how to develop and maintain a meditation practice. Today we have a guest blog post from Andy Puddicombe, founder of Headspace and formerly a Buddhist monk in the Tibetan tradition. He's also Tricycle's old meditation doctor.  More »
  • Meditation Month, Day 15: On and Off the Cushion Paid Member

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    Meditation Month, Day 14: Metta Au Natural Paid Member

    Oooh, Valentine's Day. The one day of the year that drives fear into the hearts of men and women everywhere. (Or wait, is that just me?)I used to be very anti-Valentine's Day. I liked to whine a lot about the artificiality of forcing ourselves to be loving on some random day of the year, probably because I enjoyed, in a weird way, being angst-ridden, and probably because there's a sloppy gratification and comfort in whining all the time.These days I'm more ambivalent than anything else. Valentine's Day comes and goes and comes and goes. There's not much to it—just another day. More »
  • Meditation Month, Day 13: Get thee to the cushion Paid Member

    I've heard plenty of discussions about how difficult it can be to establish a regular meditation practice. There are whole lists of tips about how to go about this. But the best advice I've ever heard is short and sweet and comes from the Buddha himself: Here are the roots of trees. Here are empty places.Get down and meditate. Don't be lazy.Don't become one who is later remorseful.That is my instruction to you. This comes from Bhikkhunupassaya Sutta, in which the Buddha explains what "directed" and "undirected" meditation are. (If you want to know more about these two forms of meditation, you can read Andrew Olendzki's translation of the sutta here.) More »