mindfulness

Episode Number
36
The breath is a common focus during meditation. Breath meditation can help cultivate mindfulness and the ability to stay present with life. In this meditation we practice paying attention to the breath, whether we feel it most at the tip of our nose, the chest, or the belly. We do these practices to train the mind to stay present and experience the natural rhythms of life.

To leave a comment about this episode, visit matthewtift.com/prettygood/36. The theme music is "Maxixe" performed by Edson Lopes under CC BY 3.0.


January 20, 2022
Buddha in Meditation Posture
The first foundation of mindfulness is contemplation of the body (kayanupassana). When you learn to listen to your bodies and stay with sensations, you can become more grounded and less reactive. Contemplation of the body helps you make friends with your body, and accept the fact that this body is not "your" body, but rather just a temporary form. A large body of scientific research suggests that simply paying attention to your body helps ward off disease, improves cognitive and emotional functioning, and much more. However, simply staying present with the sensations in your body is as simple as it is challenging.
Episode Number
35
Many of us think our way through the days. We check things off our TODO lists to feel like we are in control. But this is all an illusion. What happens next is absolutely unknown. In this meditation, we practice staying with whatever arises, both the blissful and the negative. We can use this kind of meditation as practice for the rest of lives and help identify areas where we can let go of the illusion of control.

To leave a comment about this episode, visit matthewtift.com/prettygood/35. The theme music is "Maxixe" performed by Edson Lopes under CC BY 3.0.
Episode Number
33
We can't spend our whole lives avoiding stressful situations. Sometimes we know about our unhelpful patterns and we can anticipate difficult situations. In this meditation we help prepare for situations that typically create fear, anger, anxiety, and other unhealthy stress. Mindfulness can help us prepare for difficult situations, act with compassion, and cultivate more considered responses.

To leave a comment about this episode, visit matthewtift.com/prettygood/33. The theme music is "Maxixe" performed by Edson Lopes under CC BY 3.0.
Episode Number
32
Meditation can be done outside in natural surroundings. We can also imagine nature or listen to sounds from nature. In this meditation, we sit or lie down and visualize the changing nature of a lake. We practice tapping into the stillness from the depths of the lake below the ever-changing surface of the lake.

To leave a comment about this episode, visit matthewtift.com/prettygood/32. The theme music is "Maxixe" performed by Edson Lopes under CC BY 3.0.
Episode Number
31
In this episode, we experiment. We practice clinging to nothing and just being. We don't grab on to sensations and we don't push anything away. This meditation is about resting in stillness and sitting with the experience of life.

In this episode, I accompanied myself on a harmonium. To leave a comment about this episode, visit matthewtift.com/prettygood/31.
Episode Number
30
This meditation provides a space to slow the mind and the body. Moving at a leisurely pace can allow us to notice habits that bring us out of the moment. We practice letting go of whatever tries to cart us away from the place where life actually happens as well as allow us to be more fully with other people.

To leave a comment about this episode, visit matthewtift.com/prettygood/30. The theme music is "Maxixe" performed by Edson Lopes under CC BY 3.0.
Episode Number
29
Awareness of the present moment without judgment is a fundamental aspect of meditation and mindfulness. This approach helps us to separate judgment of experience from the experience itself. In this meditation, we will pay attention to the body, to sounds, and to your whole experience of life without opinion.

To leave a comment about this episode, visit matthewtift.com/prettygood/29. To suggest a topic for a future episode or tell me more about yourself and why you are listening, visit matthewtift.com/contact. The theme music is "Maxixe" performed by Edson Lopes under CC BY 3.0.
November 29, 2021
Man wearing headphones meditating on a yoga

Most people who try meditation probably think of it as an activity done in silence. They might learn the common meditation technique where they observe sounds that happen to arise and notice the temporary nature of those sounds, but they probably would not expect those sounds to continue throughout their meditation. In other words, sound is understood to be a departure from the "real work" of sitting — or struggling to sit — peacefully in silence. Fortunately, there is more than one way to meditate and there isn't some rule that the only allowable "meditation music" is repetitions of John Cage's 4' 33".