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Dharma Talks & Meditation

Meditation can help you see the sources of your suffering, help you overcome them, and help you find happiness & peace of mind.

Gil Fronsdal’s Introduction to Buddhism

Each of these links has options to listen, watch, and read transcripts;

Gil Fronsdal, more than anyone else has helped me understand what is means to live as a Buddhist. Find years of his talks & guided meditations here.

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Thanissaro Bhikkhu

Thanissaro Bhikkhu is another teacher I have found helpful. His talks are more specific about meditation, and way his site is setup appealed to me when I first started listening to dharma talks.

Try listening to a dharma talk each day. Use the “Play random talk” at the top of the page this link takes you to, to make doing this easy. Let the topic and the sound of Thanissaro Bhikkhu’s voice wash over you. Make it a daily ritual, and I think that within a month you will begin to see some definite results.

Later, you might try meditating. Thanissaro’s meditation “how to” introduction book; With Each And Every Breath will give you detailed instructions on the meditation process right online. You can listen to the introduction as an audio file.

Thanissaro Bhikkhu also has a collection of talks by theme (including “the basics”).

His YouTube page also offers both short morning and longer evening talks from his site.

If you know how to use an RSS reader, you can get alerts to monthly packets of talks as they are released (both in English & Pali), plus alerts to new essays via his RSS feed. Because this feed delivers audio packets as .zip files, and the essays are text, this feed is not for use with iTunes, but needs a true RSS reader. Not familiar with RSS readers? Try…

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Meditation & the supernatural

One can meditate without any supernaturalistic beliefs. Gil Fronsdal describes what he calls Natural Buddhism in which he describes a view of meditation without supernaturalism.

Search Inside Yourself: The Unexpected Path to Achieving Success, Happiness (and World Peace) (2012), by Chade-Meng Tan, Daniel Goleman, Jon Kabat-Zinn. Chade-Meng Tan, Google engineer and employee 107, brought mindfulness meditation to Google, and now is doing the same to the wider world. He compares his goals of spreading mindfulness meditation to the spread of the understanding of the value of exercise. This book can teach you about meditation with no supernaturalistic ideas.

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction - an eight-week evidence-based program that offers secular, intensive mindfulness training to assist people with stress, anxiety, depression and pain.

Talks by others

Here are some additional sites that help helped me in the beginning. They publish new talks almost daily by a variety of people. Hearing the dharma explained in a variety of ways by a variety of people really helped me begin to grasp meditation in a way I had not when exposed to meditation in some of the general religious introductory books I read years ago. Perhaps they will be of help to you as well.

Talks by Guy Armstrong talks archive talks archive

Other useful sites / pages

– The @StarbucksSangha Twitter feed posts new talks each day.

The Buddha’s Teachings: An Introduction by Thanissaro Bhikkhu

The Four Noble Truths: A Study Guide, by Thanissaro Bhikkhu

The Wings to Awakening - An Anthology from the Pali Canon, by Thanissaro Bhikkhu (Geoffrey DeGraff)

Sutta Central

Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation, by Gil Fronsdal - 9 lecture series

Mindfulness with Jon Kabat-Zinn // YouTube

David Johnson, 40 short “Behind the thoughts” dharma talks with short meditations

The Dhammapada & the suttas

You won’t be able to walk into a book store and buy the Pali canon as a single book, like the Christian Bible, so don’t drive yourself crazy looking for it. Instead, you’ll have to find and acquire the suttas (texts) in pieces in various places. I’ll make a page to show you where to find them another time, but don’t want to clutter this page at the moment. You should ease into the canon. Perhaps starting with… The Dhammapada, One of the most popular / beloved of Buddhist writing collections.

The Dhammapada - A translation by Thanissaro Bhikkhu - table of contents

PDF version - a printed copy is also available for free by writing the Metta Forest Monastary, PO Box 1409, Valley Center, CA 92082

Later… you might branch out and try reading a random sutra each day, and perhaps eventually explore more of the suttas / sutras.