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Buddhism for Everyone with JoAnn Fox

Jan 11, 2020

Almost everyone wants to be less stressed and more peaceful. Even as our modern world ramps up the external stressors, we can learn to make ourselves calm and relaxed. The Buddha said, “there is no happiness higher than peace”. This episode guides us through a simple process to become more peaceful and to de-stress. 

Mindfulness Practice to De-stress 

  1. Aspire to become a calm and peaceful person, even in challenging situations.
  2. Try to be mindful of whether you’re feeling calm. Notice when you start to feel tense.
  3. Calm yourself. When you start to feel tension or stress, turn toward calming yourself—rather than doing anything to affect the situation. This is vital.
  4. When you notice tension and stress, start breathing deeply from the diaphragm, feeling your stomach expand. Or, if possible, close your eyes and begin a brief breathing meditation (see below). 
  5. Breathe deeply and say to yourself “calm” “relaxed”. Try to tune your body to these feelings...calm...relaxed. 
  6. Continue this Diaphragmatic breathing or a breathing meditation until you feel relaxed. This might take only a minute or it might take much longer.
  7. Remember the world is empty and dreamlike.
  8. Put a little smile on your face. Try to have fun and find joy in things.
  9. Keep trying this mindfulness practice and calming technique whenever you need it. You’ll get better at with practice, and eventually you will be able to tame your mind and be calm all day. 

Part 2 Daily Meditation 

  1. Ideally, meditate every morning. You can do the simple breathing meditation or any meditation you’d like. If you are new to meditating daily, you can meditate for only a few minutes. Or you can meditate for only as long as it takes your body and mind to enter a more peaceful state. Sometimes you might not be able to move your mind to a more relaxed state; no worries, just meditate anyway. Take the seat. Putting effort to begin the day in a state of peace will help you be mindful of peacefulness and help you stay relaxed. 
  2. Let the experiences of life dissolve into your peaceful state. 
  3. Think of your world as empty, dreamlike.
  4. Keep a little smile on your face. 
  5. Enjoy everything you can. 

There is no fire like lust

No misfortune like hate,

No suffering like the aggregates

And no happiness higher than peace.

—Buddha, The Dhammapada 

A Simple Breathing Meditation 

  1. Sit with your back straight and your shoulders dropped and relaxed.
  2. You can put your hands in the mudra of meditative equipoise. To do this, place your hands in your lap with your palms facing upward. Rest your right hand in your left. Touch your thumbs, forming a bridge. 
  3. Breathe through your nostrils.
  4. Breathe deeply, from your diaphragm.
  5. Observe the sensation of your breath at your nostrils.  Instead of paying attention to thoughts, allow your only thought to be watching the breath.
  6. Like watching the water lapping at the shore, calm the mind by watching the gentle rise and fall of the breath at your nostrils. 
  7. When you exhale, really feel yourself relaxing...deeper and deeper with every exhalation. 
  8. When your mind wanders, without judging yourself, bring it back to the breath.


Buddha. The Dhammapada, translated by Gil Fronsdale. (2011). Shambala, pp. 54.


Oz, M. (2019), Apr. 11). America’s Doctor: The Dr. Oz Podcast. How to Stress Less [podcast]. Episode 94.