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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

Gil Fronsdal, more than anyone else has helped me learn to meditate and understand “the dharma”. Find years of his talks & guided meditations here.

Gil also does a weekday live online guided meditation & short dharma talk at 7am CA time, 10am NJ time, and you can find a link to that in the left hand column of the Insight Meditation Center website. Sometimes at the end of a weekly topic, there is also an additional Zoom community session, where you can meet and talk with other meditators. I highly recommend making this morning group meditation a habit if you can, and if you can’t I recommend consuming the guided meditation & dharma talk each day later as a recorded file.

Learn to meditate online

Learn mindfulness meditation online. Here are 4 weeks of mindfulness guided meditations & instructions, given by Gil Fronsdal from August 24th through September 18, 2020.

By listening to older retreat sessions on mindfulness

other topics

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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.

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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.

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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.

Nikki Mirghafori

Diana Clark

Kim Allen

Guy Armstrong talks archive talks archive

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Other useful sites / pages

Insight Meditation Center - Redwood City, CA

My “Dharma - tts (text to speech)” YouTube playlist

– 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

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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.