Mindfulness Exercises For Buddhists

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Deepen your Buddhist practice with our free mindfulness exercises, guided meditations, mindfulness worksheets and more. 

What Would They Think

“What Would They Think?”

Mastering the Third perspective helps you balance out the feelings towards others in certain situations without interference with all your decision-making ...
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parenting happily

Parenting Happily

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Parenting Happily, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your belly, chest, and head each feel when you reflect on this topic- the emotions ...
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Meditation For Sleeping

Guided Meditation For Sleeping

A spoken meditation clip to assist you in falling asleep in a relaxed manner, followed by cozy & ambient sounds of a log cabin and a gentle fire crackling ...
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Ajahn Sumedho Peace Is A Simple Step

Peace is a Simple Step (Ajahn Sumedho)

Vol 1 of Ajahn Sumedho's Peace Is A Simple Step focuses on achieving peace & serenity through visual imagery that will help improve one's meditation ...
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Guided Meditation On Forgiveness

Guided Meditation on Forgiveness [Audio]

Forgiving doesn’t mean we don’t take care. It’s a movement of our own heart to re-open to life. That we forgive for the freedom of our own hearts ...
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Meditation

Standing & Walking Meditation

Tara Brach leads a guided Standing & Walking Meditation. It's a wonderful way to feel being present when standing or walking or while we're on our way ...
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Does Willpower Play In Awakening?

What Part Does Willpower Play In Awakening?

Little to no part; instead, surrender to the moment.Instance 150Guided AudioMeditations Effective for reducing stress, anxiety, depression and insomnia.$48 Download them to your own computer Access the audio anytime, anywhere ...
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Purification

Purification

Qoya is based on the idea through movement, we remember. We remember our essence is wise, wild and free. Using movement as metaphor and infusing movement with meaning, the words ...
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Mindfulness exercise, Judging Mind, no self no problem

No Self, No Problem

Anam Thubten talks about No Self No Problem. No self is an old concept in the Buddhist sutras. To Anam, we are no singular entity but more of multi-dimensional, if ...
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Breath Focus B

Breath Focus B

Breath Focus B is part of the FitMind Meditation Program. “To master our breath is to be in control of our bodies and minds.” - Thich Nhat Hanh.Breath Focus B: ...
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Can We Auto-Correct Humanity?

Can We Auto-Correct Humanity?

Can we auto-correct humanity?Why I Refuse to Let Technology Control Me.You need not delete your social networks or destroy your cell phones, the message is simple, be balanced, be mindful, ...
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When Not To Listen to Your Employees

When Not To Listen to Your Employees

The workplace should be a good environment to grow into, and working with your employees could make it seem difficult. Learn from this article now ...
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Dont worry, be happy

Susan David: How Forcing Positivity Can Create Despair

I do have concerns about the over arching societal messaging that we are hearing, which is that we should focus on being happier; that we should choose to be happy ...
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sensing into strong triggered feelings

Sensing Into Strong, Triggered Feelings

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Triggered Feelings, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your belly, chest, and head each feel when you reflect on this topic- the emotions ...
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Surf the Body

Surf the Body (The Body Scan)

This mindfulness exercise is a guide for practicing the body scan, whereby you will be surfing your body to be aware when it is happy or when it is not ...
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Nature of Awareness, Big Mind Guided Meditation, Loving Humanity, seven factors of awakening

Big Mind Guided Meditation

Guy Armstrong leads a big mind guided meditation. Good for calmness and relaxation, enforcing mindfulness and liberating consciousness ...
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Forgiving Ourselves & Others

Forgiving Ourselves & Others

Tara Brach leads a guided meditation on Forgiving Ourselves and Others as part of Metta, and loving-kindness. Sometimes the body tends to tense and resist ...
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Is There Too Much On Your Plate [Video]

Is There Too Much On Your Plate? [Video]

Feeling overwhelmed and stressed – having too much “stuff” on your plate? Be empowered & determined so you can take concrete actions to solve your problem ...
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Body Scan B

Body Scan B

Body Scan B is part of the FitMind Meditation Program. It is designed to help you feel and bring awareness to the myriad of sensations throughout your body.Body Scan B ...
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Five Minute Meditation

Five Minute Meditation – With Just Bells

Available for download, audible media of 5-minute meditation with just bells. Good for worry-free meditation for 5 minutes ...
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Mindfulness Breathing, Two Minutes of Mindful Breathing

2 Minutes of Mindful Breathing

With just 2 minutes of mindfulness breathing meditation, you can recenter & recharge for the rest of your day. Check out this free guided mindful breathing ...
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Mindfulness meditation

Pain in Meditation & Daily Life, 3/4

Ines Freedman leads Part 3 of guided meditation about Pain in Meditation & Daily Life. Ines Freedman had a condition in growing up that inflicts pain on her body ...
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Letting Go of Seriousness [Video]

Letting Go of Seriousness [Video]

Listen to David Gandelman as he teaches energy awareness, ancient wisdom traditions, and humor to create a safe atmosphere for learning meditations ...
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Mindfulness exercise

Impulse To Freedom

Anam Thubten urges us to find out about the thought of our impulse to freedom. A spiritual impulse which is a deep longing bigger than any other desires ...
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relating to romantic relationships

Relating to Romantic Relationships

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Romantic Relationships, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your belly, chest, and head each feel when you reflect on this topic- the emotions ...
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8 Mindfulness Exercises for Love and Compassion

8 Mindfulness Exercises for Love and Compassion

8 Mindfulness Exercises for Love and Compassion. Where we come into greater resonance with this powerful force of love that rests at the core of each of us ...
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Law Of Attraction Spoken Affirmations for Happiness & Living In The Moment

Affirmations for Happiness & Living In The Moment

These spoken affirmations for happiness over time can change your life! These affirmations can be heard aloud. Remember to put your intention behind each ...
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Starting A Long Retreat [Audio]

Starting A Long Retreat [Audio]

Guy Armstrong introduces a kind of an approach, of starting a long retreat, because it’s like nothing else in our lives and nothing else in the world ...
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How To Be Happy by James Baraz

How To Be Happy [Audio]

James Baraz talks about How to be happy. The practice as a path to happiness.That Buddha thought about suffering we tend to lose sight of happiness ...
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Several Meditation In One

Several Meditations In One

Several Meditations in One is an expansive form of Guided Meditation Script that combines several meditations from different sorts and virtues and emotions ...
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Simple Mindfulness Strategy Take 5

Simple Mindfulness Strategy – Take 5

If you are looking to be mindful in your life, then you have to understand this. Learn this simple mindfulness strategy in your daily life ...
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Ajahn Chah Teachings on Nature

Teachings On Nature

Teachings on Nature. One of Ajahn Chah’s unique qualities was his ability to explain & encourage people in ways that made the practice tangible ...
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How to Incorporate Mindfulness at Work

How to Incorporate Mindfulness at Work

The work place is full of stressors. From deadlines to demanding bosses, it can be hard getting through the work day without wanting to pull your hair out. However, if ...
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Kamma and the End of Kamma

Kamma and the End of Kamma

Intention, I tell you, is kamma. Intending, one does kamma by way of body, speech and mind. And what is the cause by which kamma comes into play? Contact, bhikkhus ...
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Listening Meditation with Mark Coleman

Listening Meditation

prAna Mindful Living Ambassador Mark Coleman leads a 6-minute meditation focused on listening to help us live in the moment ...
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Melting Into Love Anam Thubten

Melting Into Love [Audio]

One of the most powerful to melt this frozen is love. There are different ways of Melting into love. There're a hundred expressions of love ...
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4 Minute Meditation by Tara Brach, Mindfulness Meditation

4 Minute Meditation

With this guided 4-minute meditation by Tara Brach, you can begin incorporating mindfulness into your life right here and now. Practicing mindfulness doesn't need to be time-consuming ...
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Restoring Confidence When Negatively Impacted

Restoring Confidence When Negatively Impacted

Restoring Confidence When Negatively Impacted. Trauma & deep internal challenges can leave its mark on confidence. This can help restore confidence to self ...
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Collection Of Mindfulness Quotes

A Collection of Mindfulness Quotes

A collection of 63 mindfulness quotes from Ajahn Brahm’s teachings, put under three headings: Sīla (virtue), Samādhi (meditation), and Pañña (wisdom) ...
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Earth Descent Meditation

Earth Descent Meditation

With free online worksheet, visualize your awareness dropping deep within the Earth with this Earth Descent Meditation by Buddhist teacher Reginald Ray ...
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mindful parenting

Mindful Parenting 101

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Parenting 101, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your belly, chest, and head each feel when you reflect on this topic- the emotions that ...
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How to Meditate in a Moment

How to Meditate in a Moment

A quick-fire guide in how meditation is possible in even just a single minute - anytime and anywhere, with these helpful tips to accomplish it ...
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Nature of Awareness

The Force of Harmony

Ajahn explains each of us has a force to contribute to the environment. To do good and let go of the bad ways. And eventually, create harmony in the world ...
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What You Practice Grows Stronger

What You Practice Grows Stronger

Ready to make positive changes in your life? Through the power of mindfulness taught by Dr. Shauna Shapiro, learn to let go of any burden & become happier ...
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Mindfulness Exercises for Emotionally Disturbed Kids

Mindfulness Exercises for Emotionally Disturbed Kids

Often times children, in general, are never taught to be mindful or present in the moment. Even adults struggle with this skill. Children who are labeled as having Emotional Disturbance ...
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Mindfulness and Buddhism

While mindfulness in and of itself does not require we practice Buddhism, we cannot practice Buddhism without understanding and embodying mindfulness. Buddhism is a religion and philosophy that has stood the test of time, having been founded over 2,500 years ago by Siddhartha Gautama. As a cornerstone of Buddhist philosophy, mindfulness practice has been explored and embodied for centuries. Its presence is so strong and deeply rooted that mindfulness, often referred to as sati, is often considered the first step one takes towards enlightenment.

Understanding Sati

Sati is the first of the Seven Factors of Enlightenment, though it is a component of each and every stage. According to the Buddhist tradition, mindfulness can be defined as, “moment to moment awareness of the present moment.” It is not something we can possess or hold onto; rather, it a process we experience again and again.

Mindfulness, or sati, can also be understood as:

  • Bare attention, or non-conceptual awareness
  • Correct view, or clear seeing
  • Non-judgmental awareness
  • Awareness of reality
  • Remembering, or bearing in mind

Remembering, as it is understood in the Buddhist sense, does not refer to the recollection of past events by the egoic mind; rather, it is a reminder to pay “bare attention” when the mind has wandered, or when we have moved away from the present moment. In this way, mindfulness has the ability to remind us to focus on what is happening right here and now. Not only is mindfulness the art of paying attention, it is also what calls us back when our attention has flittered away.

Mindfulness in the Buddhist Tradition

The Buddhist roots of mindfulness are powerful reminders of what this process or practice is and what it is not. Happiness or relaxation are often falsely associated with mindfulness; meanwhile, Buddhism reminds us that mindfulness is not conditional in any way. In the Buddhist practice of mindfulness, everything is observed without judgment. While what is observed in the mind might be noted as happiness, the presence of this state is not necessary for the practice to be complete or “correct.”

Many modern views of mindfulness focus on the idea of the primary or individual self, harbouring, however unconsciously, the notion of the separate self. Buddhism, on the other hand, views life as a conglomerate of flowing energy that creates our thoughts, our feelings, and our experience. Through movement towards enlightenment, the self is liberated from its sense of separateness.

It is important to note that the separate self does not need to be rejected or judged in any way; rather, it is something that Buddhist mindfulness practice eventually moves us through. Our experience of the separate self can be observed just like anything else. This understanding is a crucial component to the expansion of one’s mindfulness practice. These ancient insights provide us with signposts to help us move past our attachment to our experiences and our stories and our strong sense of the separate self. They encourage us to witness the present moment reality from a clearer, or more absolute, vantage point.

How Buddhism Promotes Mindfulness

Buddhism promotes mindfulness through a variety of techniques and modes of exploration. To better understand the ways in which it is practiced in this tradition, mindfulness can be explored through its four foundations: mindfulness of body, mindfulness of feelings, mindfulness of mind, and mindfulness of dhammas.

1. Mindfulness of body

Including mindfulness of breathing, awareness of the body, contemplation on the reality of the physical body, reflection on the material reality, and awareness of the body’s impermanence

2. Mindfulness of feeling

Different from emotion, feelings in this sense are broken down into awareness of risings that are: pleasant, neutral, and unpleasant; bodily and mental; worldly and unworldly

3. Mindfulness of mind

Involves awareness of mental states such as distraction, concentration, hatred, lust, or retraction

4. Mindfulness of dhammas, or mind objects

  • Awareness of Five Hindrances (desire, anger, sloth, worry, doubt)
  • Awareness of the Five Aggregates of Clinging (form, feeling, perception, mental-formations, consciousness)
  • Awareness of the entry points of consciousness (eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind)
  • Mindfulness of the Seven Factors of Enlightenment (mindfulness, investigation of dhammas, energy, joy, relaxation, concentration, and equanimity)
  • Mindfulness of the Four Noble Truths (suffering, the origin of suffering, the cessation of suffering, and the path leading to the end of suffering)

These four cornerstones provide a framework through which we can begin to explore mindfulness. Typically, we would explore one at a time, beginning with breath awareness and then moving outwards from there. Eventually, we reach the Four Noble Truths, coming to understand intuitively (rather than intellectually or theoretically) how one can move towards the absence of suffering.

The End of Suffering through Mindfulness

According to Buddhist philosophy, we suffer not because we are inherently “wrong” or “bad” but because we do not understand the reality of nature. Buddhism introduces us to the three marks of existence: impermanence, suffering, and insight. Mindfulness and contemplation of these aspects of our existence help us to move through our suffering as we gain a deeper understanding of the absolute reality of nature.

The Pali word for suffering is dukkha, a term that can be more completely understood as:

  • The physical or mental suffering that comes from the cycle of life (the transition through birth, growth, illness, and death)
  • The emotional aspect of our humanity, including sorrow and grief
  • Attachment to things that, by nature, change constantly
  • Lack of satisfaction or the feeling of expectations not being met

We gain insight into dukkha by increasing mindfulness of the Buddhist understanding of life. As we come to understand and accept the flow of nature and the impermanency of everything (from thoughts to physical possessions), we begin to overcome whatever rests at the root of our suffering. This deeper level of awareness increases our experience of contentment with whatever exists. We find ourselves in greater flow with the cycles of everything life comprises of.

​Buddhist Mindfulness Practices

Mindfulness practice in Buddhism is often believed to be highly associated with meditation, but it much more than this. The practice of being mindful can be carried throughout every aspect of our lives, touching the ways we interact with others, the way we walk, the way we eat, and the way we do just about anything. In studying Buddhism philosophy, it is not uncommon to find ourselves becoming instinctively more mindful of how we tread on this earth on a daily basis and of our interconnectedness to all things.

There are a variety of different ways we can deepen our awareness of the present moment. Countless online resources exist to help guide us into deeper levels of understanding. Three techniques and practices with roots in the Buddhist tradition are listed below.

Breath Awareness

Mindfulness of body is most simply explored through awareness of the breath. To practice, come into a comfortable seated position with the spine straight and the shoulders relaxed. You may sit cross legged on the floor or in a straight-backed chair. Rest your hands in your lap or on your thighs as you come into a state of stillness.

Draw your awareness to your breath without changing it in anyway. Keep your focus on this movement of energy into and out of your body, calling upon mindfulness to help refocus your attention when the mind wanders.

Keep the heart open, remaining compassionate towards whatever you experience. Refrain from judging the present moment in anyway. Continue to breathe mindfully, drawing your attention back to the breath again and again. You may sit here for any period of time that suits your needs.

Loving Kindness Meditation

Within the Buddhist tradition, Loving Kindness meditation, or Metta meditation, is a practice that helps to keep the heart open and compassionate. It supports insights as through this practice, we come to realize our interconnectedness on a more profound level.

To practice, come to a seated position with your back straight and shoulders relaxed. Take a few moments to settle into the space and then draw your attention to the center of your chest. Breathe through this space.

Once you feel grounded, bring yourself to mind. With eyes closed, observe the presence of yourself in your mind’s eye exactly as you are. Open your heart to this individual and when you are ready, softly repeat the words:

May you be loved, may you be safe, may you be happy, may you be at peace.
May you be loved, may you be safe, may you be happy, may you be at peace.

Take your time with this, allowing yourself to be completely present with these words as they permeate the image of your own being. Sit with this moment for as long as you need.

When you are ready, repeat the practice with three more people:

  • Someone you are close to
  • Someone you feel neutral towards
  • Someone you have a challenging relationship with

With each of these individuals, take your time to bring their image and essence to mind, repeating the same blessings to them.

May you be loved, may you be safe, may you be happy, may you be at peace.
May you be loved, may you be safe, may you be happy, may you be at peace.

Finally, repeat the same kind words to the Universe at large, holding the entire world in your awareness. Imagine all beings being blessed with light, love, and peace.

Allow all images to dissipate as you come back to silence. Focus on your breath for a while observing whatever arises in your field of awareness. When you are ready, you may slowly return to the physical world by gently opening your eyes.

Vipassana Meditation

Also known as Insight Meditation, Vipassana is a meditation technique that dates back to the earliest days of Buddhism. With roots in India, Gotama Buddha came upon the practice over 2500 years ago. It offers insight into the three marks of existence and moves us towards liberation from suffering. Vipassana is taught in 10-day retreats as the entire practice is considered to be a mental training.

The practice helps us to see things as they are and guides its students to pay focused attention to the sensations of the physical body. It is based on open observation and helps to connect the gap between mind and body.

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