Category: Mindfulness

Matthieu Ricard: Happiness Is a Skill

Tami Simon speaks with Matthieu Ricard, an author and photographer who earned a PhD in cell genetics. He is also a Buddhist monk who has served as the Dalai Lama’s French interpreter since 1989. Matthieu has written several books, including The Monk and the Philosopher, The Quantum and the Lotus, as well as The Art of Meditation. With Sounds True, he has released an audio learning program based on his book Happiness. Matthieu speaks about the skill of happiness, as well as the conditions for happiness. He also discusses the physical and psychological effects of meditation, along with the ways to track the progress you make in your spiritual practice. (37 minutes)

The Collapse of Certainty

Tami Simon speaks with Alan Clements, a human activist, artist and former Buddhist monk, extensively trained in Buddhist psychology and insight meditation. He is the author of The Voice of Hope, Burma, and a new book, A Future to Believe In. With Sounds True he’s published the audio learning program Natural Freedom. Alan discusses the archetype of feminine power found in the life actions of Burmese Nobel Laureate and activist Aung San Suu Kyi. We also spoke about the collapse of certainty in the face of war and genocide, and the idea of the inter-dependence of our freedom, as well as asking ourselves the question, “What is freedom?” (58 minutes)

Shedding Anything Other Than the Sacred

Tami Simon speaks with Stephen Levine, a poet and meditation teacher who has worked counseling the dying and their loved ones for the past 40 years. He’s the author of the bestselling books Who Dies? and A Year to Live. With Sounds True, Stephen has turned his groundbreaking work from A Year to Live into an audio learning program, in addition to In the Heart Lies the Deathless, The Grief Process and, To Love and Be Loved. Stephen discusses the power of softening to our suffering, and living mindfully as a preparation for death. (52 minutes)

The Practice of Gratitude

Tami Simon speaks with Angeles Arrien, a teacher, author, and cultural anthropologist. Her teachings, which connect the disciplines of anthropology, psychology, and comparative religion, focus on humanity’s shared beliefs and values, along with ways to incorporate this wisdom into our modern lives. With Sounds True, she has created the programs The Second Half of Life, and Gathering Medicine; and most recently Gratitude. Angeles speaks about the importance of having a gratitude practice, and the exciting adventure of what Angeles describes as the “third act of our lives.” (51 minutes)

Reginald A. Ray: Dark Retreat

Tami Simon speaks with Reggie Ray, a teacher and scholar in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition with four decades of experience with the practice of meditation. He’s the founder and spiritual director of Dharma Ocean and an author whose writings include Touching Enlightenment, Indestructible Truth, and Secret of the Vajra World, as well as several audio programs including Your Breathing Body and Meditating with the Body. Reggie is also a teacher with whom Tami has studied closely for the past eight years. Reggie discusses his recent experiences in dark retreat as well as the true goal of meditation and Reggie’s view of the meaning of spiritual practice. (51 minutes)

Writing as Spiritual Practice

Tami Simon speaks with Natalie Goldberg, a writer and teacher and a painter. She has studied Zen Buddhism for nearly four decades, and is ordained in the Order of Interbeing with Thich Nhat Hanh. Her audio programs include Old Friend from Far Away, Long Quiet Highway, Thunder and Lightning, The Great Failure, and Writing Down the Bones. She’s also created an audio program with Julia Cameron, available through Sounds True, called The Writing Life. Natalie discusses writing as a spiritual practice, what it means to meet your mind in writing practice, and her recent experience of beginning to stand in the role of being a Zen teacher. (51 minutes)

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