Today’s topic: RELATIONSHIPS! As late celebrity monk Ajahn Chah once said, “The most convenient way to practice meditation is as a monastic, because monastics are celibate.” But I guess human relationships must be pretty good, because we just keep coming back for more. So if we can’t stop ourselves from such holy foolishness in this… Continue reading Episode 6: “Tongue-Kissing the Void.” (Or, “I Only Date Buddhists.”)
The heart of the mindfulness-adjacent paradigm known as non-violent communication explores the following: how underlying needs and values cause a person to perceive another person’s behavior in a certain light, particularly during difficult exchanges. This exploration is a way to lead both parties back to a state of empathy and compassion.
Today’s topic: NATURE! As machete-voiced beatnik philosopher Tom Waits is wont to remind us, “We’re chained to the world, and we’ve all got to pull.” Some of us our able to make the best of our embedment in the natural world, but others will never stop being freaked out by it. Jess helps Jon see… Continue reading Episode Five: “A Very Advanced Practice.”
Jess offers a meditation intended to help one gain comfort with discomfort—whether they be in nature, or anywhere else.
Today’s topic: PARENTING! You know what they say: raising a child is a little bit like tap-dancing, backwards, while wearing high heels, and covered in fire ants. Meanwhile, trying to achieve even a shred of enlightenment is challenging enough without, at the same time, attempting to keep an entire extra human alive. Jess tries to… Continue reading Episode Four: “Our Children’s Children’s Clones.”
Jess offers a meditation in which loving-kindness is interwoven with equanimity, to create a veritable brahmavihara spice mix, with which any of us might generously season our experiences.
Today’s topic: RETREATS! Sitting a silent meditation retreat is a virtual rite of passage for mindfulness people. But let’s be frank—sitting in silence for a number of days with only your mind for company is not necessarily a bucket full of gumdrops. Jess and I will talk about all the snakes and ladders one encounters… Continue reading Episode Three: “Rollercoaster Explosion.”
Jess leads a meditation on digesting and transforming challenging emotions—either while on retreat, or in everyday life.
Today’s topic: COMMUNITY! Asian communities have been practicing Buddhism in the United States since the 1800s, with the idea of “sangha” always front and center. Yet, when the thing we think of today as mindfulness practice was brought over by white Buddhist teachers in the 20th century—from such Buddhist-leaning countries as Thailand, India, and what was… Continue reading Episode Two: “Buddhas Don’t Play Tambourines.”
Jess leads a reflective meditation from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, affirming the commitment to attend to the well-being of all those with whom we share our communities…and the world.