FREE GUIDED MEDITATIONS
Links to Free Meditation Resources. Although our modern world can contribute to stress and anxiety (including Internet / tech gadget addiction), one should also look to the positive things technology offers. One of the great things about the Internet is that there are many audio resources and tools that you can listen to for free–from guided meditation to music to comedy (remember, laughing is actually good for your brain). This page contains some of our favorites. Enjoy.
Oh, wait, would you rather hear some meditative and relaxing music, instead? Not a problem, we have that too! 😉 Click ➤ h e r e for music solace.
Meditation Podcast: Meditation Oasis. I love these guys. They’ve been doing guided meditation for many years, and to be honest, I rely on them to help me relax and many nights, I fall asleep to the soothing voice of Mary Maddux. Well worth subscribing to the podcast, which again, is free! Website: http://www.meditationoasis.com. They also have wonderful apps that provided lovely music and guided meditation: Simply Being and Relax and Rest.
- Simply Being – Lovely 8-minute guided meditation.
Tara Brach – Free Guided Meditations. Tara Brach’s teachings combine “Western psychology and Eastern spiritual practices, mindful attention to our inner life, and a full, compassionate engagement with our world. The result is a distinctive voice in Western Buddhism, one that offers a wise and caring approach to freeing ourselves and society from suffering.” Tara offers a variety of free meditations (as well as other resources), including:
- Gateway to Presence – 10 minute guided meditation.
- Moment of Calm – 10 minute guided meditation.
- Coming Home to Presence – 13 minute guided meditation.
- “Inner Space: Gateway to Open Awareness” – 19 minute guided meditation
- New to Meditation: Resources and explanations — wonderful resources for those just starting out!
Guided Meditations by Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction pioneer Jon Kabat Zinn. Jon Kabat-Zinn. For many, the name has become synonymous with modern mindfulness. As a physician who took a break from his work to study Buddhism in the ’70s, it was a decision that helped lead the beginning of the mindfulness movement in the United States. After training in Buddhism, he came back to his practice with the then-fairly radical idea that the benefits of Buddhist mindfulness could help his patients who were suffering from chronic illness. Here’s but one of his many guided meditations.
Dr. Mark Williams and Dr. Danny Penman. Authors of the highly regarded Mindfulness: An Eight-Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World. I own a copy of the audiobook, and it’s wonderful. Williams and Penman explain–in plain, simple English–the processes that keep us trapped in negative feedback loops and how you can use mindfulness to break free. They also offer several free guided meditations (associated with their mindfulness book), including:
- The Chocolate Meditation. Similar to the well known “raisin meditation,” this meditation helps you pause and truly experience moments with a fullness that we typically ignore.
- Mindfulness Meditation of the Body and Breath. Sometimes referred to as autogenic meditation, focusing one’s mind on experiencing how your body actually feels, as well as the autonomic nervous function of breath (both sensations that we typically ignore on a daily basis) helps focus the mind.
- The Befriending Meditation. self-compassion as well as kindness towards others–an extremely important component of healing and reducing anxiety not only toward yourself, but toward others. This guided meditation focuses on the sense wonderment in self-compassion as well as kindness towards others–an extremely important component of healing and reducing anxiety not only toward yourself, but toward others.
- Sounds and Thoughts Meditation. This guided meditation focuses on the sense wonderment in hearing.Awareness of ambient sounds around you without judgment (or stories) associated with them; and accepting them as something newly experienced. Another deep, rich experiencing guided meditation.
- Three-Minute Breathing Space. A “mini-meditation” that helps you reset and “come home” to your body. Body awareness, breathing awareness, and “the weather inside” are the core elements of this simple, but powerful little guided meditation.
- Silent Meditation with Bell Intervals. For the more advanced meditator, silently experiencing and observing thoughts and dialogue and allowing them to come and go, arise and dissipate, with only your silence and the 5, 10, 15, 20, and 30 minute bell intervals to mark the time.
Podcast: The New Psychology of Depression. Comprehensive podcast from Williams and Penman. A series that addresses the definition of depression and how it is treated to cognitive therapies and how mindfulness can help. (~3 hours, in 6 segments). Summary: “We live in a world filled with material wealth, liver longer and healthier lives, and yet anxiety, stress, unhappiness, and depression have never been more common. What are the driving forces behind these interlinked global epidemics? Professor Mark Williams (Wellcome Trust Principal Research Fellow at Oxford University) and Dr. Danny Penman discuss the recent scientific advances that have radically altered our understanding of depression and related disorders.”
Daniel Goleman on the importance of focus. In a time of non-stop, 24/7 inputs, from computers to smart phones to news cycles, we’ve increasingly become a society with Attention Deficit Disorder on a massive scale. Recent research shows that not only do our minds wander (about 30% of all waking hours), but that wandering minds actually make us unhappy. In the following, noted journalist and pscyhologist Daniel Goleman explained on public radio station KQED that the ability to focus is critical to achieving success, and counts more than IQ or social background.
Download the mp3 audio here.