New course formats on Wildmind, coming Monday

June 17, 2017

Believe it or not, I’ve been running online courses through Wildmind since 2001! I believe in fact that I may have been the first person to offer meditation courses online.

A lot’s changed since I started this. Although we’ve offered courses in various formats, for the entire time I’ve been teaching online I’ve provided a mixture of background reading material and guided meditations in audio format, supported by discussion.

That’s worked pretty well, but more and more people are accessing our courses on mobile devices, on which reading is less enjoyable. I think many of us are finding it harder to stay focused while reading on electronic devices.

So we’re trying an experiment with courses … Read more »

The most important thing you need to know about life, according to Buddhism

June 4, 2017

Arguably the central teaching of Buddhism, without which the others make no sense, is that things change.

While “things change” may seem like a commonplace observation, made by dozens (at least) of philosophers and religious teachers over the last few millennia, the Buddha wasn’t content simply to pay lip-service to the concept of impermanence, but followed through the implications of this fact as far as he possibly could.

He saw our resistance to change as the source of our suffering. He talked about this resistance in terms of clinging — a desperate attempt to hold onto stability in the flowing river of time.

Clinging sometimes manifests as expectation — we want something to happen in … Read more »

Meditation as a “positivity cascade”

May 13, 2017

It used to be that if you wanted to learn to meditate you had to take the risk of entering an exotic, incense-scented meditation center, wondering if you were stepping into the domain of some weird cult. Nowadays, though, you can download meditation apps, learn meditation online, or even attend a class at your local hospital.

Yet although meditation is approaching mainstream acceptance, many people still have the image of meditation as something unusual, and perhaps even difficult. They expect something religious or mysterious.

The principles of meditation, however, are very down to earth.

But first, let’s understand what tends to happen when we’re not very mindful.

The mind does a lot of thinking that … Read more »

A path to awakening — on your phone

May 5, 2017

Right now we’re crowdfunding so that we can bring out a meditation app. The app is called “Bodhi Mind,” and its going to offer a huge selection of my guided meditations, which you’ll literally have at your fingertips.


We’ve already raised almost 75% of what we need in order to develop the app. If you’re interested in becoming a backer, you only have five days left, so head over to our campaign page and select your perk.

But you might want to know what’s going to be in the Bodhi Mind app, and that’s what I’m going to talk about here.

In short, the Bodhi Mind app offers a path to spiritual awakening. It includes … Read more »

The eyes have it

May 2, 2017

As you’re reading these words, begin to notice your breathing. Don’t change anything, just letting your body breathe naturally.

  • Notice where the breathing is taking place. How much of the movement is in the chest, and how much is in the abdomen?
  • Notice the rate of your breathing.
  • Notice how deep or shallow your breathing is.
  • Notice how you feel.

Now continue to notice these things, but with one change:

For a minute or two, stop focusing on the individual words, but relax your gaze and allow yourself to take in the whole screen, and then everything around the screen, right up to the periphery of your visual field.

Now that you’re back …

You … Read more »

If you want to be happier, drop the mind-reading

April 27, 2017

An essential part of being human (and in fact of being a primate) is what psychologists call “theory of mind,” which is the ability to attribute mental states—beliefs, intentions, desires, plans, knowledge, thoughts, and so on—to others. When you have to give bad news to someone, for example, you know that they may become upset, and you take this into account in the way you talk to them. If you’re explaining something to another person you may anticipate certain questions they might ask. This is you employing a theory of mind.

This is such a basic part of our lives that we don’t give it a second thought, but that in itself can become a … Read more »

Bodhi Mind meditation app update

April 26, 2017

With 14 days left in our crowdfunding campaign, we’ve already raised 56% of our target. And we’ve just added a new perk to our campaign — the Bodhi Mind mug.

We’ve made a lighthearted (and decidedly amateurish) video to go with it, but the more serious side is that Wildmind’s aim is to help people. We hear over and over again that what we do here is in fact life-changing, that it helps people free themselves from their suffering, and that it helps people understand how to transform their lives through meditation and Buddhist practice.

As well as our website, which offers hundreds of pages of free meditation instruction, we help people by recording and … Read more »

Approaching half way!

April 18, 2017

Our Indiegogo campaign, to fund our forthcoming meditation app, is approaching the 50% mark! Since the campaign is a month long and we’re just over a week in, this is fantastic news.

Already almost $4,000 has been contributed by 55 backers.

Our app will offer access to a huge, and ever-expanding, library of guided meditations, led by Bodhipaksa. The app itself will be free, although a subscription will be required to unlock all of the guided meditations.

This is our adaptation to the age of the app. We used to support our activities by publishing CDs, but of course that’s been in decline for a long time. Even MP3 are now losing popularity, as various … Read more »

One thing at a time…

April 13, 2017

Check out Bodhipaksa’s Stress Reduction Through Mindfulness retreat, April 21–23, 2017

Sometimes we have major stressors in our lives, like financial or relationship problems, or insecurity about our employment. But there are also many smaller-scale situations that contribute to our stress too. For me, these include dealing with the demands of parenting. And it’s often small things, like getting the kids out of the door and responding to their questions that are triggers for me being sharp with them.

And one thing I’ve noticed is how these small-scale situations are usually only stressful when I’m multi-tasking. So if the kids try to ask me something when I have part of my attention on emailing a … Read more »

Meditation app update

April 13, 2017

At the precise moment of writing this post, our meditation app campaign stands at one 35% funded.

This is fantastic, just a few days into our month-long campaign.

What this app will be offering is access to a large, and ever-expanding, library of my guided meditations, along with recordings of talks and workshops.

The app will have at least 80 guided meditations when it goes live (expected date, July of this year) and I’ll be adding to it anything else I record.

We’re offering great perks to supporters. Even if you’re an Android user, it’s worth supporting this campaign. We have several perks that don’t depend on access to the app, and also supporting the … Read more »