Don’t Take it Personally

Is it about you? The Practice: Don’t take it personally. Why? Here’s an updated parable from the ancient Taoist teacher, Chuang-Tzu: Imagine that you are floating in a canoe on a slow-moving river, having a Sunday picnic with a friend. Suddenly there is a loud thump on the side of the canoe, and it rolls

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Open Space Mindfulness

This is the fourth and final post in the series on developing mindful presence. Here’s Part One, Part Two, and Part Three. In Part Three we did a little mindfulness meditation to “tune-up” our mindfulness and concentration skills. Now we are going to distill that mindfulness meditation down to its very essence: abiding as awareness

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Rick’s Picks: Man vs. Machine

Rick’s Picks is a new series of posts highlighting the very best content online. This piece from FiveThirtyEight explores a classic contest of man vs. machine, carried out on the battlefield of the chess board. Seventeen years ago in New York City, brooding chess champion Garry Kasparov sat down to take on an opponent he

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The Neurodharma of Love

Most of our greatest joys and sorrows happen in our relationships with others. Imagine then: what if you could guide your mind to forgive, heal, and find greater happiness in your connections with others? The remarkable truth is that you can. Check out this sample audio of my The Neurodharma of Love: Rewire Your Brain

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Notice You’re Alright Right Now

Are you basically OK? The Practice Notice you’re alright right now. Why? To keep our ancestors alive, the brain evolved strong tendencies toward fear, including an ongoing internal trickle of unease. This little whisper of worry keeps you scanning your inner and outer worlds for signs of trouble. This background of unsettledness and watchfulness is

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Mind Precedes All Things

Here is the latest talk from the San Rafael Meditation group with Rick Hanson. It is titled Mind Precedes All Things. More information on the San Rafael Mediation group can be found at http://www.rickhanson.net/teaching/meditation-group/.
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Mindfulness Tune Up

This is the third post in the series on developing mindful presence. Here’s Part One and Part Two. Steady mindfulness requires overcoming the natural – and evolutionarily adaptive – tendency of mind to scan endlessly and think of new things. So the basic capacity to steady the mind – called concentration, as a short-hand –

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Rick’s Picks: Norah Jones Sings “Don’t Know Why” on Sesame Street

Rick’s Picks is a new series of posts highlighting the very best content online. Norah Jones sings “Dont know why ‘Y’ didnt come” – starring Elmo – during the “letter of the day” segment on Sesame Street season 35 episode 4081. I have fond memories of my children watching Sesame Street as kids, this was

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Self-Directed Brain Change

I think you might like this sample from my audio program – Self-Directed Brain Change: Rewire Your Neural Pathways for Happiness and Resilience – a step-by-step program for retraining our neural structure out of “sheer survival” mode and into one of greater well-being, mental clarity, and moment-to-moment appreciation. I’d love to hear your feedback about

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Forgive Yourself

Are you hard on yourself? The Practice: Forgive yourself. Why? Everyone messes up. Me, you, the neighbors, Mother Teresa, Mahatma Ghandi, King David, the Buddha, everybody. It’s important to acknowledge mistakes, feel appropriate remorse, and learn from them so they don’t happen again. But most people keep beating themselves up way past the point of

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