Dr. Steve Taylor is a senior lecturer and researcher in psychology and the social sciences at Leeds Beckett University in the UK. With Sounds True, he has released the audio program Return to Harmony: From Turmoil to Transformation, a collection of teachings, meditations, and poetry on living in alignment with the present moment. This week's Producer's Pick excerpt is sourced from one of Steve's most potent teachings, summarized sharply by Sounds True producer Kriste Peoples: "Spoiler alert: life is terminal. The brevity and inescapability of it is bracing. With all of our busyness and full lives, we can do a pretty good job of ignoring it, but we can’t unknow it, and we certainly can’t outrun it." Here Steve guides listeners in a gentle but straightforward consideration of their own mortality and the fact that all things end. Though this knowledge is frightening, for Dr. Taylor it also opens the door to a grander and more expansive view of all that life has to offer.
Archive for the ‘producerspick’ Category
Pema Chödrön is a beloved, American-born Buddhist nun who currently serves as the senior teacher at Gampo Abbey in Nova Scotia. The author of many books and audio programs, her most recent collaboration with Sounds True is The Courage to Love the World: Discovering Compassion, Strength, and Joy Through Tonglen Meditation. In this week's excerpt from that program, Ani Pema shares three methods for the cultivation of compassion. She emphasizes that compassion practice pulls us from what might otherwise be a solitary enterprise, making us acknowledge that we must consider others in order to better the world. Sounds True producer Jeff Mack commented on his selection, "This is a beautiful way to look at things in the world. Everyone experiences pain, suffering, and joy. They are universal. In this practice, we can bring others along with us and develop the courage to love the world."
Latham Thomas is a lifestyle and wellness maven whose books include Mama Glow and Own Your Glow. With Sounds True, she created the audio program Beditations: Guided Meditations and Rituals for Rest and Renewal. Commenting on this week's selection from that program, Sounds True producer Kriste Peoples says, "Sleep. It's a necessity for basic human function, yet sleep deprivation has reached epidemic proportions. And the studies keep telling us what we already know: lack of sleep compromises our body's immune system and raises our risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, and more." Fortunately, Latham has a solution in the form of a total, back-to-basics surrender to the body's natural demands for rejuvenating sleep. Here Latham shares one of the first and most important steps for reclaiming your right to rest: how to create a safe, intentional space for your sleep needs.
Stan Tatkin, PsyD, MFT, is a clinical therapist and author who synthesizes current therapeutic modalities and neuroscience. With Sounds True, he has created the audio programs Your Brain on Love and Relationship Rx. This week's selection was chosen from the latter program by Sounds True producer Steve Lessard, who commented, "The world of relationships is fascinating to me. There is enormous potential within a relationship for growth. But there is also the reality that relationships can be hard . . . and for many of us, there are not a lot of great models for healthy relationships that we can look to as examples. Thank goodness for Stan and his work." In this excerpt, Dr. Tatkin outlines some of the subconscious causes of a couple's interaction, as well as qualities necessary for a securely functioning relationship. For Dr. Tatkin, couples who can co-manage distress and know the difference between "exciting love" and "quiet love" have already created a foundation for lasting intimacy.
Karen Brody is a wellness and leadership coach who focuses on helping women achieve their full potential in a world that often asks far too much of them. With Sounds True, she has published the book Daring to Rest and the audio program The Daring to Rest Yoga Nidra Meditation Program. In this week's selection, Producer's Pick presents an excerpt from the latter program that illustrates just why Karen works to bring proper rest and rejuvenation to modern women. Here Karen shares the story of the brutal panic attack she experienced as she tried to juggle the responsibilities of work and new motherhood without any kind of restful sleep—and how that spurred her to take action. Speaking on the techniques Karen developed in response to this frightening episode, Sounds True producer Kriste Peoples says, "It's not the yoga we see so often . . . It's a deeper way to rest and to release the toxins that we've been living with."
Sadhguru is a yogi and mystic who created the Isha Foundation, a nonprofit organization devoted to exploring the outer limits of human potential. He has collaborated with Sounds True to release an audiobook version of his New York Times bestselling book, Inner Engineering. In this week's excerpt, Sadhguru encourages listeners to move past the seemingly unbreakable confines of their lives not by looking to the horizon, but through a journey inward. After all, according to Sadhguru the only true obstacle between you and optimal well-being is the assumption that our fulfillment will come from an outside source. In the words of Sounds True producer Kriste Peoples, "If this is the way to joy, then it’s a journey whose time has come."
Rolf Gates is an acclaimed yoga teacher and author best known for his boundary-leaping book Meditations from the Mat. This week's Producer's Pick excerpt comes from Rolf's newest collaboration with Sounds True, a practice-centric audio program Meditations on the Mat: Practices for Living from the Heart. Producer Mitchell Clute chose this selection because "so many meditation practices focus on working with thoughts and stilling the mind, but don't really address the heart. What I love about Rolf's approach is he really looks at the power of the heart for fostering calm and connection—and he grounds his teaching in his own experience." In this segment, Rolf highlights our tendency to be much harsher toward ourselves than we ever would be with friends and loved ones—and how we can begin to change that attitude.
Diane Poole Heller, PhD, is a practicing psychotherapist who specializes in Adult Attachment Theory and trauma resolution. In her latest audio program, Healing Your Attachment Wounds: How to Create Deep and Lasting Intimate Relationships, Diane engages with both of these issues head-on, speaking on her research into what it takes to repair one's ability to be in relationship with others. Sounds True producer Steve Lessard chose this week's selection from that program, commenting, "I chose this section for you this week because I love the fact that research shows we need each other. It points to our beautify capacity and the necessity for human contact." Here Diane describes a number of different data points and practices that prove that it is indeed possible to move toward a more secure style of attachment. (11 minutes)
John Lockley is one of the only modern white men to be initiated as a sangoma—one of the traditional shamanic healers of the Xhosa people of South Africa. He now teaches African shamanic wisdom across the globe. With Sounds True, John recorded the practice-centric audio course The Way of the Leopard: Meditations and Shamanic Practices from the Heart of Africa. In this excerpt from that program, John describes "the seven senses"—the five we all know, plus the senses of intuition and dreaming. According to John, when we connect fully with our abilities to intuit and the endless possibilities of dreams, we come into a much deeper and truer understanding of our inner selves. Commenting on this week's selection, Sounds True producer Mitchell Clute says, "Seamlessly combining John's background as a Zen practitioner with his training as a traditional medicine man . . . these teachings on fully inhabiting our bodies, our lives, and our world are a vital and important message for the contemporary spiritual seeker."
Dan Millman is an author and lecturer whose semi-autobiographical book Way of the Peaceful Warrior first ignited the public imagination almost 40 years ago. Most recently, Dan has partnered with Sounds True to create The Complete Peaceful Warrior's Way, an audio follow-up to that perennial seeker's classic. In this excerpt from the program, Dan reminds audiences that life is inherently difficult and that it is through that difficulty that we change for the better. When we meet the challenges of daily life with peace and equanimity, we invite the room to learn important lessons and become stronger. In the words of Sounds True producer Kriste Peoples, "Raising children, learning an instrument, working a job, being human—daily life is rife with challenge. It's what we signed up for; it's the arena of the peaceful warrior."
Loch Kelly is an innovative meditation teacher, author, and the founder of the Open-Hearted Awareness Institute. With Sounds True, Loch has most recently released the audio training program Effortless Mindfulness Now: Awakening Our Natural Capacity for Focus, Freedom, and Joy. In this program—as well as the excerpt that makes up this week's selection—Loch teaches a form of mindfulness that may be unfamiliar to those who have practiced basic mindfulness meditation. According to Sounds True producer Mitchell Clute, "This effortless mindfulness or awake awareness . . . is the ultimate medicine we've all been seeking—spacious, loving, open, clear—but it escapes us because we're using the wrong tools to find it." Sometimes described as a "flow state" or "being in the zone," this state of frictionless awareness is the true ground of being—an awareness from which we can see clearly, act with integrity, and engage with the world with a love that transcends the mind-made self.
Pedram Shojai is a former Taoist monk, Qi Gong master, and the creator of the Urban Monk Academy, podcast, and Mastermind program, as well as the New York Times bestselling book The Urban Monk. With Sounds True, Pedram has recorded a new audio course titled The Urban Monk Inner Stillness Training Program. In this week's excerpt, chosen by Sounds True producer Kriste Peoples, Pedram introduces listeners to the great work of internal alchemy taught by the Yellow Dragon monastic lineage. He explains the basics of lifestyle choices and qi-movement exercises designed to catalyze personal change on every level, rousing us from indolence and into a rich new engagement with life. Speaking on the segment, Kriste notes, "Once we understand the fullness of who we are, we have no other choice than to wake up, coming fully into consciousness, vibrantly alive."