Stream 18 Hours of Free Guided Meditations


Image via Wiki­me­dia Com­mons

This year’s crazed elec­tion got you stressed out? Or just life in gen­er­al? “It’s nev­er too late,” Allen Gins­berg reminds us, “to med­i­tate.” On Mon­day, we brought you sev­er­al ver­sions of Ginsberg’s med­i­ta­tion instruc­tions, which he set to song and record­ed with Bob Dylan and dis­co maven/experimental cel­list Arthur Rus­sell, among oth­ers. Ginsberg’s “sug­ar-coat­ed dhar­ma,” as he called it, does a great job of draw­ing atten­tion to med­i­ta­tion and its ben­e­fits, per­son­al and glob­al, but it’s hard­ly the sooth­ing sound­track one needs to get in the right pos­ture and frame of mind.

For that, you might try Moby’s 4 hours of ambi­ent music, which he released free to the pub­lic through his web­site last month. Tra­di­tion­al­ly speak­ing, no music is nec­es­sary, but there’s also no need go the way of Zen monks, or to embrace any form of Bud­dhism or oth­er reli­gion. Whol­ly sec­u­lar forms of mind­ful­ness med­i­ta­tion have been shown to reduce stress, depres­sion, and anx­i­ety, help man­age phys­i­cal pain, improve con­cen­tra­tion, and pro­mote a host of oth­er ben­e­fits.

Still skep­ti­cal? Don’t take my word for it. We’ve point­ed you toward the vast amount of sci­en­tif­ic research on the sub­ject of mind­ful­ness med­i­ta­tion, much of it con­duct­ed by skep­ti­cal researchers who came to believe in the ben­e­fits after see­ing the evi­dence. If you too have come around to the idea that, yes, you should prob­a­bly med­i­tate, your next thought may be, but how? Well, in addi­tion to Ginsberg’s wit­ty Vipas­sana how-to, UCLA has a series of short, guid­ed med­i­ta­tions avail­able on iTune­sU. And just above, we have an entire playlist of guid­ed meditations—18 hours in total. It was put togeth­er by Spo­ti­fy, whose free soft­ware you can down­load here.

These include more reli­gious­ly-ori­ent­ed kinds of med­i­ta­tions like “Guid­ed Chakra Bal­anc­ing” and the mys­ti­cal philoso­phies of Deep­ak Chopra, but don’t run off yet if all that’s too woo for you. There are also sev­er­al hours of very prac­ti­cal, non-reli­gious instruc­tion from teach­ers like Pro­fes­sor Mark Williams of the Oxford Mind­ful­ness Cen­tre, who offers med­i­ta­tions for cog­ni­tive ther­a­py. See Williams dis­cuss mind­ful­ness research and med­i­ta­tion as an effec­tive means of man­ag­ing depres­sion in the video above. (Catch a full mind­ful­ness lec­ture from Pro­fes­sor Williams and hear anoth­er guid­ed med­i­ta­tion from him on Youtube).

You’ll also find a 30-minute guid­ed med­i­ta­tion for sleep, sitar music from Ravi Shankar, and many oth­er guid­ed med­i­ta­tions at var­i­ous points on the spec­trum from the mys­ti­cal to the whol­ly prac­ti­cal. Some­thing for every­one here, in oth­er words. Go ahead and give it a try. No mat­ter if you can man­age ten min­utes or an hour a day, it’s nev­er too late.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Dai­ly Med­i­ta­tion Boosts & Revi­tal­izes the Brain and Reduces Stress, Har­vard Study Finds

Allen Gins­berg Teach­es You How to Med­i­tate with a Rock Song Fea­tur­ing Bob Dylan on Bass

Free Guid­ed Med­i­ta­tions From UCLA: Boost Your Aware­ness & Ease Your Stress

Josh Jones is a writer and musi­cian based in Durham, NC. Fol­low him at @jdmagness

by | Permalink | Comments (7) |

Sup­port Open Cul­ture

We’re hop­ing to rely on our loy­al read­ers rather than errat­ic ads. To sup­port Open Cul­ture’s edu­ca­tion­al mis­sion, please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion. We accept Pay­Pal, Ven­mo (@openculture), Patre­on and Cryp­to! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Comments (7)
You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
  • Francois says:

    Look … give us a break already. Why must you col­lude with Spo­ti­fy in this bait and switch to load their junk on our com­put­ers when all this could be made eas­i­ly avail­able in far less com­pli­cat­ed (or pri­va­cy intru­sive) mp3 for­mat?

  • Steven says:

    “Look … give us a break already. Why must you col­lude with Spo­ti­fy in this bait and switch to load their junk on our com­put­ers when all this could be made eas­i­ly avail­able in far less com­pli­cat­ed (or pri­va­cy intru­sive) mp3 for­mat?”

    Well said, Fran­cois. It’s a shame.

  • Larry says:

    Hate Spo­ti­fy

  • Richard says:

    It isn’t eas­i­er, though. Upload­ing files always takes up more time and space than it is to just link to stuff host­ed else­where. In this case it hap­pens to be Spo­ti­fy. I’m sure most of these tracks are also avail­able else­where.

  • Ayn Sof says:

    Sam Har­ris’s 9 min guid­ed med­i­ta­tion is also use­ful: in 9 mins he cov­ers the basics of Mind­ful­ness Med­i­ta­tion:

  • Ed says:

    It’s sur­pris­ing that peo­ple can still man­age to com­plain about some­thing that is giv­en to them for free.

  • Philip says:

    Ed, it’s not free. You give some­thing in exchange. Like using gmail or face­book.

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.