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Bernie Schreck

25 Favorite Quotes on Meditation

I enjoy studying teachings on meditation. It helps me keep my practice alive and reminds me of the different instructions. When I don’t have time to study longer teachings, I find reading short quotes is a great support for my practice. They are like pithy instructions that remind me of the most crucial points.

Quotes are really wonderful and can be used in so many ways. For example, when I want to work on a specific aspect of my practice, I sometimes pick a quote that expresses the essence of what I want to focus on. I then write it onto a post-it-note and put it on my practice table as a reminder.

Here is a collection of my 25 favorite quotes. Maybe you’ll find some amongst them that inspire you too. I also invite you to share your favorite quotes and how you work with them in the comments.




“Generally we waste our lives, distracted from our true selves, in endless activity. Meditation is the way to bring us back to ourselves, where we can really experience and taste our full being.” - Sogyal Rinpoche


“The whole of meditation practice can be essentialized into these 3 crucial points: Bring your mind home. Release. And relax!”  - Sogyal Rinpoche


“The masters say if you create an auspicious condition in your body and your environment then meditation and realization will automatically arise.” - Sogyal Rinpoche


“Sitting like a mountain let your mind rise and fly and soar.” - Sogyal Rinpoche


“Just as the ocean has waves or the sun has rays, so the minds’s own radiance is its thoughts and emotions.” - Sogyal Rinpoche


Samsara is mind turned outwardly, lost in its projections. Nirvana is mind turned inwardly, recognizing its nature. - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche


Rest in natural great peace, this exhausted mind, beaten helpless by karma and neurotic thought, like the relentless fury of the pounding waves in the infinite ocean of samsara - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche


The great masters of the past taught: “Water if you don’t stir it will become clear; the mind left unaltered will find its own natural peace.”


The best way to control cow and sheep is to give them a big grazing field – Shunryu Suzuki


“If it weren’t for my mind, my meditation would be excellent.” – Ani Pema Chodron


“When the mind goes beyond the thought of ‘the me,’ the experiencer, the observer, the thinker, then there is a possibility of a happiness that is incorruptible.”  – Jiddu Krishnamurti


"The mind is its own place, and in it self can make a heav'n of hell, a hell of heav'n."– John Milton


”Body on your seat, mind in your body, mind in relaxation.” – Patrul Rinpoche


“Zen is not some kind of excitement, but concentration on our usual everyday routine.” – Shunryu Suzuki


“Meditation is the discovery that the point of life is always arrived at in the immediate moment.” – Alan Watts


“With the past, I have nothing to do; nor with the future. I live now.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson


“The gift of learning to meditate is the greatest gift you can give yourself in this lifetime.” - Sogyal Rinpoche


“Simply let experience take place very freely, so that your open heart is suffused with the tenderness of true compassion.”  - Tsoknyi Rinpoche


“If you mind is empty, it is always ready for anything; it is open to everything.  In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.” - Shunryu Suzuki


“You as a salt-being, made of salt, go to fathom the depth of the ocean, and in the process you yourself dissolve. A great maharishi once said that true meditation is like this.” - Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche


"After a few years of meditation practice we can even learn how to occasionally ignore ourselves. And what relief that can be!" - Wes Nisker


"All of man's difficulties are caused by his inability to sit, quietly, in a room by himself." -  Blaise Pascal


“In the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in a clearer light, and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal clearness. Our life is a long and arduous quest after Truth.” - Mahatma Gandhi


“I know but one freedom and that is the freedom of the mind.” - Antoine de Saint-Exupery


"Meditation practice isn’t about trying to throw ourselves away and become something better, it’s about befriending who we are."  Ani Pema Chodron