Podcasts

There’s a joke that almost every time I open my mouth it gets archived here.

Awake in the World Podcast is the heart of the Community Library. Talks are on a wide-range of topics, including: bringing mindfulness and meditation practice into daily life; personal and community issues regarding mental health; and social change. They’re uploaded once (or sometimes even twice) a week and are between 30-60 minutes long. I encourage you to follow along weekly. The podcasts are recorded at live events so you might hear coughing, airplanes, cars, sirens, laughter, and peoples’ questions—all part of the intimate experience.

This podcast has been created so that anyone can have instant access to Awake in the World. The podcast is made possible due to generous donations from members of the community. The archive goes back to 2011. Since that time, hundreds of thousands of people have deepened their practice by pressing play.

You can listen to any of the podcasts on this page, on your mobile device through iTunes, or over on SoundCloud.

You can help the podcast reach more people by subscribing, rating, and commenting on iTunes.

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  • Raw Fear is a Dot in Space

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    More people are afraid of uncertainty than they are of physical pain. If we do something about our own pain, we can connect with the pain of others. 50% of our practice should be inward and 50% in our environment. Green Bay, Wisconsin. Recorded March 28, 2017.

  • The Secular Buddha

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    Stephen Batchelor reflects upon secular Buddhism and revisits the Four Noble Truths, primary Buddhist ideals, assumptions and dogmas. Centre of Gravity, Toronto. Recorded March 28, 2010.

  • Fear, Rebirth, and the 3 Insights

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    Describing how the Buddha met fear, Michael maps out how concentration practice unfolds, then offers a mind-opening view of rebirth and reincarnation. Wisconsin. Recorded March 26, 2017.

  • What Is This? Short Guided Meditation

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    An 8-minute guided meditation with Martine Batchelor. Centre of Gravity, Toronto. Recorded March 28, 2010.

  • From Fear to Sympathy

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    How to meet others who are in fear or anxiety, how to help anxious kids, how to validate the feelings of other people without exacerbating what’s going on for them, and how to develop concentration (jhana) practice. Wisconsin. Recorded March 26, 2017.

  • Fear, Dread & Anxiety: The Buddha in the Forest

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    On retreat, Michael speaks about the Buddha’s instructions for practicing alone in the wilderness, how past actions haunt the body, how to turn towards anxiety, and a moving story about his son and autism. Wisconsin. Recorded March 25, 2017.

  • 20 min. Guided Meditation on Thinking

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    For the purposes of meditation, what you’re thinking about is not important. But as we pay attention to thinking in meditation, you might notice other aspects of the process of thinking besides the content. So, for example, if you’re thinking words or images, what’s the quality of the inner voice? What’s the quality of the pictures that you see? Recorded 2017.

  • 20 min. Guided Meditation: Unstable Emotions

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    See if you can find out where in your body that emotional state or mood is most manifested, most expressed. What sensations or feelings in your body let you know that you’re having this emotional state? See if you can notice how the emotional state is expressed through your body, through sensations in your body. Recorded December 2017.

  • 20 min. Guided Meditation: Feeling the Sensations of the Body

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    Nothing needs to be refused. Let the breath travel the body without picking up speed. The clouds of thought haul across the sky. Let them come and go. Let the breath move the way blood moves: let it find its own rhythm. Recorded 2017.

  • 20 min. Guided Meditation: Tuning into Breath in the Nostrils

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    Tuning into breath in the nostrils to explore subtle sensations and bring mind into its natural state. Recorded 2017.

  • 20 min. Guided Meditation: Mindfulness of the Breathing Body

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    Mindfulness of the breathing body in the abdomen to settle thoughts. Recorded 2017.

  • 20 min. Guided Meditation: Receptive Listening

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    Using sound as an anchor to ground attention. Recorded 2017.

  • You Can’t Make A Person Into a Buddha

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    Michael explores practicing without an idea of gain, the Universal Self, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Pattabhi Jois, the Buddha and Shunryu Suzuki. How can you blend your breath with the larger self? Moksha Westshore, B.C. Recorded February 18, 2017.

  • Spiritual Bypassing & Mindfulness of Thinking

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    Michael integrates a discussion of spiritual bypassing (using practice to avoid dealing with painful feelings and unresolved emotional habits) with a teaching on using labeling to let go of ruminating thoughts and overthinking. Victoria, B.C. Recorded January 22, 2017.

  • My Body is My Teacher Now

    How to not leave your body, even when it feels untrustworthy. We can always turn to the body in pain, grief, and even in altered states of consciousness. Anxiety, compassion, and equanimity always play out in your body. Victoria, B.C. Recorded January 19, 2017.

  • How We Practice in Family

    **BONUS** Michael Stone and Matthew Remski read personal letters they wrote to each other as expectant fathers. These letters later become their co-authored book, "Family Wakes Us Up." They explore their process as fathers, as parents, and as two people integrating spiritual practice and the demands of parenting. This podcast is from our archive and was recorded November 23, 2013, in Toronto.

  • 15 minute Guided Meditation on the Breathing Body

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    Bringing distractions back into the beginning of the inhale. Victoria, B.C. Recorded January 17, 2017.

  • Not Picking & Choosing

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    Michael uses an old Zen tale, a troubled story about him falling in love with his wife, and quotes from Shunryu Suzuki, to describe the practice of not-knowing and not holding onto anything. He ends with a very interesting and subtle meditation instruction on breathing. Chapin Mill, New York. Recorded December 31, 2016.

  • Seals, Owls & Letting Go of Destructive Relationships

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    Michael explores the sensitive topic of knowing when to pull out of relationships, kindness to one’s self, emptiness, love, and a story about appreciating that you and others are divine. Chapin Mill, New York. Recorded December 30, 2016.

  • Moment To Moment Non-Stop Flow

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    On silent retreat Michael speaks about bowing, forms of practice, gratitude, extending meditation beyond the cushion, and appreciating the practice of others. Recorded at Chapin Mill, New York, on December 29 2016.

  • From Blame to Gratitude

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    Michael unpacks different kinds of blame, both inward and outward, followed by a description of projection and the link between blame and projection and how they cover over underlying feelings. Then he describes how we can make room for gratitude, as taught in the Tibetan Lojong teachings. Recorded in Ottawa on December 10, 2016.

  • All Roads Run Right Through the Capital

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    Deep listening, wisdom, and the ability to do extraordinary things. Salt Spring Island, B.C. Recorded in December, 2016.

  • Turning Things Around

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    Tibetan Buddhist Teachings for transforming what’s unpleasant, letting go of grasping, and the 3 treasures of awakening, reality and community. Portland, Oregon. Recorded on December 4, 2016.

  • Tonglen: Sending & Receiving Practice

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    A talk, followed by a guided meditation on inhaling suffering and exhaling peace. A practice of learning how to exchange your happiness for someone else’s suffering – how to train your heart to do what it doesn't want to do. Portland, Oregon. Recorded December 3, 2016.

  • Don’t Get Stuck on Peace, See Everything as A Dream

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    A lively discussion on meditation and the Tibetan Lojong Practices for Training in Compassion. Portland, Oregon. Recorded on December 3, 2016.

  • Not Giving Up On Ourselves & Fully Inhabiting Our Lives

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    What’s happening right now in our lives can be the raw material that shows us the path of awakening & compassion. In Portland, Michael teaches from the Lojong Training in Compassion. Portland, Oregon. Recorded December 2, 2016.

  • Shame, Perfectionism, and the Pre-Cognitive Dimension of Trauma

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    Michael explores how mindfulness and meditation practice can heal shame and trauma and how these symptoms manifest in relationship. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Recorded on November 20 2016.

  • I Can’t Say, I Can't Say

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    In Berlin Michael talks about Zen Case 55 of the Blue Cliff Record “Tao Wu's Condolence Call.” He talks about the Yoga Sutra, not being afraid, and how an awakened person has a very wide palette of emotion, it’s just they don’t grasp so much. Recorded at YogaSpirit in Berlin, Germany on October 20, 2016.

  • Superhero Practice: Balanced Energy, Improvisation, and The Vow to Serve Others

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    A ship is safe in the harbour, but that’s not what ships are built to do. Michael talks about the ways that we can balance calmness with vitality, how not to be afraid of our power, and how balanced energy can have superhero qualities. Recorded in Copenhagen, September 27 2016.

  • What Do You Do When People Fall Down?

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    Using a Zen koan about the Pang family, Michael talks about wholehearted activity, compassion, and throwing yourself to the ground when someone falls down. He ties this into the refugee situation in Europe, racism, and how to take compassionate action when we have no idea what to do. Recorded in Copenhagen on September 25, 2016.

  • The Self Has No Self: What to do with the Ego?

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    Describing the 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th limbs of yoga, Michael offers a very clear talk on the self, the ego and the emptiness of what we cling to. At the core of the personality we are trying to create permanence because we’re trying to come to terms with how fluid things really are. Recorded in Stockholm on September 9, 2016.

  • Allowing For Experience: Practicing Non-Separation

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    Michael lectures on the end of 2nd chapter of the Yoga-Sutra and then gets into a very precise mapping of what happens to the ego when you get into deeper states of calm and how to practice without dissociating. Recorded in Stockholm, September 8, 2016.

  • I Saw You Fall, So I Helped

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    Based on a Zen story, Michael talks about wholehearted activity, compassion, and throwing yourself to the ground when someone falls. He ties this into the refugee situation in Europe, racism, and how to take compassionate action when we have no idea what to do. Recorded in Stockholm, September 7, 2016.

  • Effort, Monarch Butterflies, and Meditation Lessons in Farming

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    Caitlin Lambstrom gives a dharma talk on silent retreat about avoiding burnout, using effort wisely, getting rest, and being inspired by something greater than yourself. Salt Spring Island, Canada. 40 min. Recorded August 26, 2016.

  • Ethics, Forgiveness, Breathing, and the Body

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    Michael speaks about the ways that being mindful of the body helps us make ethical choices and how our hostility and poor conduct only happen when we have lost track of the body. An interesting exploration at the nexus of ethics and breathing. Recorded at the Eight-day Silent Meditation Retreat on Salt Spring Island, August 24, 2016.

  • Deeper & Deeper Patience

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    Michael speaks about composure, waiting 5 breaths when we are aggravated, and how patience is not about waiting for something, it’s really a matter of being where you are. The talk begins with a story about his young son and ends with a sing-along. Salt Spring Island, Canada. 50 min. Recorded August 25, 2016.

  • Healing Trauma Through the Body

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    Michael suggests that you need to get deeper than cognition and stories, in order to heal trauma. It’s what we have created in the wake of painful events, that need healing. Knowing when to name our symptoms and then when to drop the pathology. Meditation Facilitation Program, London, 40 min. Recorded on July 31, 2016. Listen to Part 1, Symptoms of Trauma: http://bit.ly/2lhkCDI

  • Symptoms of Trauma

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    Michael details fear, dissociation, and shame, and how they impact the body, mind, and relationships. Very clear talk about the strategies we use to protect ourselves and create recognizable symptoms. Michael ends with a story about generational trauma. Meditation Facilitation Program, London. Recorded on July 30, 2016. Listen to Part 2, Healing Trauma Through the Body: http://bit.ly/2kke4WB

  • Thinking Is Optional

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    How to work with your thoughts through labeling practice. Recorded at the Meditation Facilitation Program 2016 in London, UK.

  • Forgiveness

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    **BONUS** A tender and personal talk Michael gives during silent retreat about his father, forgiveness, and how we need to practice forgiveness all the time. He talks about how, and why. He talks about the painter Hellen Frankenthaller's death and practicing in good times and bad. This podcast episode is from our archive and was recorded Dec 29, 2011.

  • Love: Sometimes We Can Really Show Up

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    **BONUS** If you are scared to die you can't forgive. An hour before New Year's Michael gives a quiet talk on the Heart Sutra and Forgiveness. "When I hold someone's hand as they are dying I chant the Heart Sutra. Or when I watch my son sleeping." A tender and quiet talk on silent retreat. This podcast episode is from our archive and was recorded on Dec 31, 2011.

  • Learn How to Stop Breaking Things

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    **BONUS** Michael gives a talk on New Year's Silent Retreat on Dogen and how to practice meditation without memory and imagination. Learn to step back and turn your light inwards. Living in your small grass hut, covered in weeds. This podcast episode is from our archive and was recorded on Dec 30, 2012.

  • Being Independent in our Practice

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    **BONUS** Michael Stone talks on silent retreat about how meditation works over the long-haul, how to practice with a teacher that encourages independence, and how to live without gain. This is the second last talk of the year and the group was in deep silent practice, and it was snowing. This podcast is from our archive and was recorded Dec 30, 2013, at Sugar Ridge Retreat Centre in Midland, Ontario.

  • Speaking Up, Resilience, Non-Grasping

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    **BONUS** Michael Stone talks during the New Year's Silent Meditation Retreat about the depth of meditation, an old koan about bowing, Zen master Dogen, and Edward Snowden. This powerful talk wraps up 2013. This podcast episode is from our archive and was recorded Dec 31, 2013, at Sugar Ridge Retreat Centre in Midland, Ontario.

  • The Unnecessary Suffering We Cause Ourselves

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    Using mindfulness of thinking to hold mental states more lightly. Meditation Facilitation Program, London, 50 min. michaelstoneteaching.com

  • Letting Go of Expectations & Having the Last Word

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    Michael begins teaching concentration technique by aligning attention and the body. Recognizing expectations we have for ourselves and others and how grasping creates suffering. Not allowing others to change. The more you seek enlightenment the further it goes away. Meditation Facilitation Program, London, 50 min. michaelstoneteaching.com

  • Blending Traditions: Yoga & Buddhism

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    A community talk at Tassajara Monastery with Michael Stone & Zen teacher Paul Haller. They each share some of their biography and field questions about practice. Paul shares from his 40 years of Zen practice. Tassajara Zen Mountain Monastery, California.

  • Carl Jung & Meditation Practice, Part 4 of 4

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    **BONUS** Michael talks about feeling the breath; the limits of Jung's ideas of images; how to go beyond internal dialogue and how Jung falls apart for 2 years and how he deals with it. Recorded on September 25, 2012.

  • Carl Jung & Meditation Practice, Part 3 of 4

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    **BONUS** Michael explores happiness; how the Buddha saw a "self" as creative and not destined by fate or individuation. Become who you are. As we drop into practice, happiness is a by-product, not a goal. Recorded on September 18, 2012.

  • Carl Jung & Meditation Practice, Part 2 of 4

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    **BONUS** Michael explores what it's like to feel like two people; how Jung felt alone as a kid; the place of religious images in life as a child; how do we relate to the vastness of the unconscious and memory; the gods are on the inside now. This dharma talk is from our archive and was recorded September 11, 2012.