In a culture that teaches us we need to prove our worth through achievements, it can be challenging to prioritize peace, well-being, and spiritual growth.
We’re bombarded by marketing messages that tell us we’ll be enough, if only we “buy this—do this—look like this,” making it difficult to simply relax in who we are and feel a sense of contentment in our lives. But there is a way out of this cycle of discontent, anxiety, and constant striving.
If you’re yearning to connect with life more deeply and feel a sense of greater peace and acceptance, I highly recommend developing a regular meditation practice.
Before I began meditating, I was constantly agitated, anxious, and self-conscious, trapped in a mind that always found fault with myself—and everyone and everything around me.
Meditation is the closest thing I’ve found to a magic bullet in life. It can replace stress with calm, confusion with clarity, ignorance with self-awareness, and bitterness with grace.
There’s a lot we can’t control in life, including our thoughts and feelings—but we can control how we engage with them. And that’s how we can find a little sliver of peace in this complex, chaotic world. It all starts with mindfulness.
Not sure where to start, or how to take your practice to the next level? Tiny Buddha sponsor Shambhala Online has you covered!
The nine courses I’ve shared below will allow you to learn from anywhere, on any schedule, and to revisit the content whenever you’d like to be refreshed or re-inspired. They’re also great for when you feel your anxiety ramping up and need a de-stress tune-up, and something that reminds you that you are enough just as you are.
All of the courses feature authentic and deeply experienced teachers from Shambhala’s global community, and offer teachings from their Tibetan Buddhist heritage in forms that are direct and relevant for Western students.
As a special gift to Tiny Buddha readers, the Shambhala team has included a unique 10% off code for each course.
I hope you find something below that speaks to you!
To Start or Resume a Regular Meditation Practice
Mindfulness meditation can change your life. It’s a transformative practice that offers relief from anxiety and stress, a more grounded life, better general health and wellness, stronger relationships and connections (with others, the world around us—and ourselves!), a more spacious and accommodating mind, and innumerable other benefits.
If you’re looking to begin, or resume, a regular meditation practice, the course Learn to Meditate can help.
Led by senior teacher, movement artist, and pioneer Arawana Hayashi, Learn to Meditate covers both sitting and walking meditation, equipping you with the tools necessary to integrate meditation into your daily life—bringing you greater well-being and connection with yourself and others.
Use the code TBLEARN10 to receive 10% off Learn to Meditate.
To Develop Self-Love
Learn to Love Yourself with Sabine Rolf will help you discover warmth and kindness for yourself—a beautiful quality known as loving-kindness in Buddhism (maitri in Sanskrit).
Through meditation, experiential exercises, and talks, you’ll learn to embrace and accept your authentic self; manage stress, anxiety, and difficult emotions, leading to a more balanced and resilient state of being; and develop self-confidence and trust in yourself.
By investing in your own self-love and self-compassion, you’ll pave the way for personal growth, increased happiness, a more harmonious life, and stronger and healthier connections with others and the world around you.
Use the code TBLOVE10 to receive 10% off Learn to Love Yourself.
To Cultivate Compassion and Love
If you want to explore the Mahayana Buddhist path of universal compassion, Melting the Ice and Getting Unstuck: Talks On The 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva is the perfect jumping-off point.
This course uses as a reference a classic 14th-century Tibetan Buddhist text called The Thirty-Seven Practices of a Bodhisattva. A “bodhisattva” is any ordinary person who makes a commitment to live like the Buddha: to help others discover their fundamental goodness and be free from suffering. This course explores what it means to live on the bodhisattva’s path, and offers invaluable guidance for cultivating a strong heart and a compassionate approach to life’s challenges.
Use the code TBUNSTUCK10 to receive 10% off The 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva.
To Explore Buddhism and the Buddhist Path
Shambhala’s yearlong Foundations for Freedom: The Hinayana offers an in-depth exploration of foundational Buddhist teachings, providing you with a clear understanding of the core principles and practices.
Foundations for Freedom has five parts, each led by experienced teachers, and covers core Buddhist teachings, such as:
- The nature of suffering,
- The origin of suffering,
- That freedom from suffering is possible, and
- The path of Shila (discipline), Samadhi (meditation), and Prajna (wisdom).
By engaging with these teachings, you’ll develop mindfulness, compassion, wisdom, a deeper connection to your spiritual journey, and a true understanding of foundational Buddhist teachings and the Buddhist path.
Use the code TBFREEDOM10 to receive 10% off all Foundations of Freedom courses.
To Discover a Spiritual Path in Everyday Life
If you’d like to bring mindfulness into your daily life and discover the “ordinary magic” in your everyday- experiences, check out Meditation in Everyday Life and Contentment in Everyday Life.
Meditation in Everyday Life
Led by Janet Solyntjes, Meditation in Everyday Life is a five-week introduction to mindfulness meditation.
You’ll learn about peaceful abiding meditation, receive guidance on establishing a meditation practice, and explore ways to improve your daily life through meditation. The course also offers meditation posture instruction, shamatha yoga instruction, and downloadable guided meditations.
Through simple instructions and support, you’ll discover your mind’s innate stability, strength, and clarity.
Use the code TBMEDITATION10 to receive 10% off Meditation in Everyday Life.
Contentment in Everyday Life
Contentment in Everyday Life invites us to explore the art of finding happiness within ourselves, regardless of our external circumstances. It helps us understand that even in the most difficult of circumstances in life, we are enough—just as we are.
In this five-week course led by Eve Rosenthal, you will learn how to cultivate contentment through meditation and contemplation practices. You’ll also learn how to relax with yourself, appreciate simple human experiences, and face life’s challenges with gentleness and mindfulness.
Use the code TBCONTENT10 to receive 10% off Contentment in Everyday Life.
To Explore Human Goodness and How to Build a Good Society
If you’re looking to connect with your own worthiness and contribute to a more compassionate, enlightened society, explore the Basic Goodness series. Together, these three courses delve into the principle of basic goodness as it applies at the level of the individual, society, and reality itself, offering a roadmap for personal and social transformation.
Who Am I? The Basic Goodness of Being Human
In Who Am I? The Basic Goodness of Being Human, you’ll embark on a journey of contemplative inquiry, exploring the timeless question “Who am I?”
Through Buddhist teachings and meditation practice, you’ll learn how our sense of self arises moment by moment, and how to use meditation to contact and express the basic goodness that lies within you.
Use the code TBHUMAN10 to receive 10% off Who Am I? The Basic Goodness of Being Human.
How Can I Help? The Basic Goodness of Society
In How Can I Help? The Basic Goodness of Society, you’ll explore your relationships with others, your aspirations to help the world, and specific aspects of social transformation.
This six-session course delves into what an “enlightened society”—a society that is based on and nurtures the goodness of all—might look like. The teachings focus on transforming four aspects of society: family, professional life, entertainment, and economy.
Use the code TBSOCIETY10 to receive 10% off How Can I Help? The Basic Goodness of Society.
What is Real? The Basic Goodness of Reality
In What is Real? The Basic Goodness of Reality, led by acclaimed teacher John Rockwell, you’ll delve into the magical nature of reality, learning the progressive stages of discovering non-dual perception of the elements and, consequently, the nature of the mind.
This experiential course encourages you to engage with sense perceptions and the elements as your teachers, enabling you to see, hear, touch, taste, and smell reality anew. You will awaken your innate capacity to directly experience the basic goodness that is the essence of reality.
Use the code TBREALITY10 to receive 10% off What is Real? The Basic Goodness of Reality.
No matter what aspect of meditation and spirituality you wish to explore, Shambhala Online offers courses that cater to your unique needs and interests. As you engage with these teachings, you’ll not only deepen your personal practice, but you’ll also contribute to the creation of a more compassionate, enlightened society.
Shambhala Online also offers a regular calendar of live online courses with personal interaction, from monthly and quarterly mini-retreats to programs with revered teachers from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. To see their upcoming courses, view their course calendar.
If you have any questions or requests, you can contact the Shambhala team at email@example.com.
About Lori Deschene
Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha. She’s also the author of Tiny Buddha’s Gratitude Journal, Tiny Buddha's Worry Journal, and Tiny Buddha's Inner Strength Journal and co-founder of Recreate Your Life Story, an online course that helps you let go of the past and live a life you love. For daily wisdom, join the Tiny Buddha list here. You can also follow Tiny Buddha on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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