Tara Brach

Tara Brach

Canada

Tara Brach is a leading western teacher of Buddhist (mindfulness) meditation, emotional healing and spiritual awakening. She is author of Radical Acceptance (2003), and True Refuge (2013). Senior teacher at the Insight Meditation Community of Washington D.C. (IMCW), Tara shares a weekly talk on Buddhist teachings and practices. Visit http://www.tarabrach.com for more information. Please support this podcast by donating at http://www.tarabrach.com. Your generosity makes a difference!

Episodes

Dissolving Trance with RAIN (2017-01-11)  

Dissolving Trance with RAIN (2017-01-11) - One of the pervasive expressions of trance is identifying with a limited and separate sense of self.  This talk contrasts the self-trance to our intrinsically open, awake and loving awareness. We then explore how the mindfulness and self-compassion in the RAIN practice can directly dissolve trance and reconnect us to our true nature.

Free download of Tara’s 10 min meditation: “Mindful Breathing: Finding Calm and Ease” when you join her email list.

Meditation: Cultivating a Relaxed Attention (2017-01-11)  

Meditation: Cultivating a Relaxed Attention (2017-01-11) - In this meditation we engage a relaxed and alert attention by scanning through the body, opening to sound, and resting in the awareness that includes all the senses. This presence is stabilized with the use of a home base, for many the breath, and reminders to “relax back” when the mind naturally drifts.

Free download of Tara’s 10 min meditation: “Mindful Breathing: Finding Calm and Ease” when you join her email list.

Heart Meditation: Awakening Loving Presence (2016-12-31)  

Heart Meditation: Awakening Loving Presence (2016-12-31) ~ We each have an intrinsic capacity for loving presence, and there are powerful ways of paying attention that bring this potential alive. This meditation uses the image and felt sense of a smile to bring a relaxed receptivity to the body. We then engage with our future self (our Being when our heart is fully awake) and explore what it means to embody the fullness of that wisdom and love.

(given on the last afternoon of the 2016 IMCW 5-day New Year's silent retreat)

Refuge in Truth, Love and Awareness (2017-01-04)  

Refuge in Truth, Love and Awareness (2017-01-04) - The three archetypal refuges of truth, love and awareness are interweaving pathways home found in most spiritual traditions. This talk looks at our habitual pursuit of substitutes to feel happy, and reflects on how we awaken through each true refuge. The talk ends with a living ritual anyone can participate in that helps us remember these refuges as we move through our lives.

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

 

Meditation: Quieting the Mind (2017-01-04)  

Meditation: Quieting the Mind (2017-01-04) - We open with a reading on silence, and then relax our bodies, calm our minds and rest in the inflow and outflow of the breath. This simple meditation on relaxing with the breath ends with a verse on the blessings of quieting our mind.

Free download of Tara’s 10 min meditation: “Mindful Breathing: Finding Calm and Ease” when you join her email list.

Don't Know Mind  

Don't Know Mind - Thoughts, and more broadly, conceptual knowledge, cannot lead to the direct realization of truth, of reality. While thoughts are an essential part of surviving and thriving, spiritual awakening only becomes possible when we step out of the trance of thinking. This talk invites listeners into the radical openness and freedom of not-knowing. (a favorite from 2009-06-10)

Meditation: A Listening Presence with Smile Body Scan (2016-11-10)  

Meditation: A Listening Presence with Smile Body Scan (2016-11-10) - Listening to sounds is a powerful way to quiet the thinking mind and connect with the natural openness of awareness. This meditation emphasizes the anchor of listening, and guides us to relax through our bodies, filling them with the image of a smile. In this receptivity we find a homecoming to full presence and peace.

Question and Response: Heart Practices - (2016-11-05)  

Question and Response: Heart Practices - (2016-11-05) - follow-up to the guided heart practice: Taking in the Goodness.

Tara replies to questions from retreatants.

~ from the IMCW Fall retreat

Heart Meditation with Instructions: Taking in the Goodness (2016-11-05)  

Heart Meditation with Instructions: Taking in the Goodness (2016-11-05) - previously published without lead-in instructions. ~ from the IMCW Fall retreat

Rumi said, “Whenever some kindness comes to you, turn that way – toward the source of kindness.”

This meditation guides us to look for the source of loving and to turn in that direction. It begins with a lovingkindness practice that spreads the image of a smile into the body, then continues with a practice of seeing the goodness of ourselves and others.

“What’s it like when you communicate your appreciation of goodness to another person?”

The Revolution of Tenderness - Part 2 (2016-12-21)  

The Revolution of Tenderness - Part 2 (2016-12-21) - These two talks explore our capacity to be tender - sensitive and responsive to ourselves and others. This capacity marks a radical evolutionary shift from a self-centered existence shaped by fear, to a life lived from the realization of our collective belonging and the preciousness of all life. The talks examine the conditioning that inclines us toward dissociation and emotional reactivity, and the practices of presence that evolve our heart and awareness.

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

 

Meditation: Breathing into Presence (2016-12-21)  

Meditation: Breathing into Presence (2016-12-21) - The breath can be our gateway into the boundless awareness that holds all life. This meditation begins with a breath that calms our nervous system, and then invites a relaxed presence with the breath and sensation that open us to the “universe breathing.” Resting in awareness, we realize the wakefulness, peace and vitality of pure presence.

"The whole universe is the body breathing..."

Free download of Tara’s 10 min meditation: “Mindful Breathing: Finding Calm and Ease” when you join her email list.

The Revolution of Tenderness - Part 1 (2016-12-14)  

The Revolution of Tenderness - Part 1 (2016-12-14) - These two talks explore our capacity to be tender - sensitive and responsive to ourselves and others. This capacity marks a radical evolutionary shift from a self-centered existence shaped by fear, to a life lived from the realization of our collective belonging and the preciousness of all life. The talks examine the conditioning that inclines us toward dissociation and emotional reactivity, and the practices of presence that evolve our heart and awareness.

from Tara’s talk: Pope Francis invites us to “live the revolution of tenderness,” which is expressed through closeness, compassion and service...

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

 

Meditation - Awake Awareness is our Home (2016-12-14)  

Meditation - Awake Awareness is our Home (2016-12-14) - This meditation guides us in awakening our awareness  by opening to all our senses and recognizing the alert presence that is always, already here. By relaxing back into the presence over and over, we become familiar with the reality that is truly our home.

Free download of Tara’s 10 min meditation: “Mindful Breathing: Finding Calm and Ease” when you join her email list.

Spiritual Reparenting (2016-12-07)  

Spiritual Reparenting (2016-12-07) - When we are not sufficiently nurtured in childhood, we are inclined toward anxiety, depression, addiction and other forms of suffering. In a deep way, we do not feel at home with others, and are disconnected from our own body, heart and spirit. This talk explores how meditation offers "spiritual reparenting” as we learn to bring interest, understanding and love to our own inner vulnerability. This process of healing extends to our relationships with others and our larger society - by reaching out to widening circles with interest and care, we bring increasing harmony and peace to our world.

"How do we love ourselves into healing?"

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

 

Meditation - Relaxing Back into Living Presence  

Meditation - Relaxing Back into Living Presence (2016-12-07) - When we are lost in thoughts our mind contracts, our body tightens and we disconnect from true openheartedness. The pathway home is through “relaxing back” and reopening our attention to our senses, relaxing through our body, and gently contacting the felt sense in our heart. By repeatedly relaxing back, we become increasingly familiar with the vibrancy, tenderness and openness of true presence. 

Free download of Tara’s 10 min meditation: “Mindful Breathing: Finding Calm and Ease” when you join her email list.

Trusting the Gold (retreat talk)  

Trusting the Gold (retreat talk)(2016-11-10) - When we are unaware of the emotions and beliefs that shape our experience, we are in a trance characterized by an identity as a separate, incomplete self. Trance obscures the awareness and love that is our deepest essence. This talk explores the two key pathways of awakening from trance and recognizing and trusting the gold of our true nature.

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

Heart Meditation: Taking in the Goodness (retreat)  

Heart Meditation: Taking in the Goodness (2016-11-05) (from the IMCW Fall Retreat) - Rumi said, “Whenever some kindness comes to you, turn that way – toward the source of kindness." This meditation guides us to look for the source of loving and to turn in that direction. It begins with a lovingkindness practice that spreads the image of a smile into the body, then continues with a practice of seeing the goodness of ourselves and others. “What’s it like when you communicate your appreciation of goodness to another person?”

Part 2 - "Play a Greater Part" - Bodhisattva for our Times  

"Play a Greater Part" - Bodhisattva for our Times - Part 2 (2016-11-23) - During scary and uncertain times, the habitual reflex is to try to find ground by creating stories about what’s happening and hardening into us-them blame. This only perpetuates the aggression and violence that is so prevalent in our societies. These two talks are a reflection on how we as awakening bodhisattvas can evolve our consciousness in a way that serves authentic societal healing and transformation.

“Though I do not expect a plant to spring up where no seed has been, I have great faith in a seed. Convince me you have a seed there, and I am prepared to expect wonders.” ~ Thoreau

NOTE: Part 2 includes a Tonglen meditation near the end of the talk.

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

 

Meditation: Vipassana - 20 min - Opening Our Hearts to Life as It Is  

Meditation: Vipassana - 20 min - Opening Our Hearts to Life as It Is (2016-11-23) - This meditation awakens the senses with a mindful scanning of the body, establishes an anchor for presence, and invites us to arrive again and again, deepening the pathway home. When difficult or intense experience arises, the practice is to learn to open to what is here with a clear, allowing and kind attention.

"...widen your heart and mind so you sense your hand is on the heart of the world. Sensing whatever prayer for the world most resonates at this moment and offering it..."  

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

 

"Play a Greater Part" - Bodhisattva for Our Times - Pt1 (2016-11-16)  

"Play a Greater Part" - Bodhisattva for Our Times - Pt1 (2016-11-16) - During scary and uncertain times, the habitual reflex is to try to find ground by creating stories about what’s happening and hardening into us-them blame. This only perpetuates the aggression and violence that is so prevalent in our societies. These two talks are a reflection on how we as awakening bodhisattvas can evolve our consciousness in a way that serves authentic societal healing and transformation. 

"There is no power for change greater than a community discovering what it cares about." - Margaret Wheatley

"From bitter searching of the heart,
Quickened with passion and with pain
We rise to play a greater part. ..."
~ Leonard Cohen

Your support enables us to continue to offer these talks freely. If you value them, I hope you will consider offering a donation at this time at www.tarabrach.com/donation/.

With gratitude and love, Tara

 

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