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Meditation 101

Preparing physically and mentally for a meditation session

During the Vajrasattva retreat in 2005, Venerable Thubten Chodron taught on the two main kinds of meditation and gave instructions on how to prepare our bodies and minds for meditation.

Two main types of meditation

  • Familiarizing with positive thinking
  • Benefits of stabilization and analytical methods
  • Virtuous and nonvirtuous states of mind

Introduction to meditation (download)

Meditation posture

  • Sitting position
  • Hand placement
  • Head and eye position

Meditation posture (download)

Importance of keeping the back straight

  • Keeping the posture in check
  • The benefits of a good posture

Keeping the back straight (download)

Preparing the body and mind

  • Scanning the body
  • Cultivating a good motivation
  • Balancing one’s mind

Preparing the body and mind (download)

The importance of setting a proper motivation

  • Familiarizing one’s mind with a positive state
  • Having a long-term perspective
  • Transformation and the effects

The importance of setting a proper motivation (download)

Three levels of motivation: part one

  • Action and motivation
  • Virtuous and non­virtuous motivations
  • Preparation and awareness for the right results

Three levels of motivation 01 (download)

Three levels of motivation: part two

  • Benefits of keeping precepts
  • Attachment and its karmic results
  • Attaining a state of peace, good rebirth, and nirvana
  • Cultivating bodhicitta—­the cause of enlightenment

Three levels of motivation 02 (download)

Joyous effort

  • Diligence and joyous effort
  • Long-term view

Meditation and effort (download)

Venerable Thubten Chodron

Venerable Chodron emphasizes the practical application of Buddha’s teachings in our daily lives and is especially skilled at explaining them in ways easily understood and practiced by Westerners. She is well known for her warm, humorous, and lucid teachings. She was ordained as a Buddhist nun in 1977 by Kyabje Ling Rinpoche in Dharamsala, India, and in 1986 she received bhikshuni (full) ordination in Taiwan. Read her full bio.

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