Meditation Quotes

These are some of our favorite meditation quotes from varying authors. The quotes come from the Buddha, Buddhist teachers, and varying meditation teachers of different traditions. We will continue to add more meditation quotes as we come across more, and are always open to adding new quotes if you have a favorite one about meditating, mindfulness, or the practice!

Quotes about Meditation

meditation quotes

“Though one were to live a hundred years without wisdom and with a mind unstilled by meditation,
the life of a single day is better if one is wise and practices meditation.”
-Buddha

“To earn the trust of your meditation, you have to visit it every day. It’s like having a puppy.”
-Chelsea Richer

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”
-Viktor E. Frankl

“My teacher often likens meditation practice to a river flowing through our life. In the early stages, like a mountain spring, our practice is fleeting and undeveloped. There may be a fair few leaps and crashes before we settle into a more regular rhythm. Little by little our practice continues to grow and mature until eventually it becomes like a vast river, attracting everything else to it, no longer a small trickle in our life, but the most compelling force of it. The river may still encounter obstacles, but they are of little consequence. It will simply flow over or around them, having developed a smooth, calm, but unstoppable momentum.”
-David Michie

“So what is a good meditator? The one who meditates.”
-Allan Lokos

“While meditating we are simply seeing what the mind has been doing all along.”
-Allan Lokos

“There is no such thing as an ideal state of meditation. Awareness allows us to relate to our mental processes and to see the fundamental expression of mind as it is, including our thoughts. The meditator may find that many thoughts recur during the meditative state. These thoughts could be seen as waves on the ocean.”
-Chögyam Trungpa

“In the same way that rain breaks into a house with a bad roof, desire breaks into the mind that has not been practicing meditation.”
-Buddha

“Meditation is not a means to an end. It is both the means and the end.”
-Jiddu Krishnamurti

“If you listen to the Dhamma teachings but don’t practice you’re like a ladle in a soup pot. The ladle is in the soup pot every day, but it doesn’t know the taste of the soup. You must reflect and meditate.”
-Ajahn Chah

“You say that you are too busy to meditate. Do you have time to breathe? Meditation is your breath. Why do you have time to breathe but not to meditate? Breathing is something vital to people’s lives. If you see that Dhamma practice is vital to your life, then you will feel that breathing and practising the Dhamma are equally important.”
-Ajahn Chah

“The past should not be followed after,
And the future not desired.
What is past is dead and gone,
And the future is yet to come.

But whoever gains insight into things
Presently arisen in the here and now,
Knowing them, unmoved, unshaken –
Let him cultivate that insight.”
-Majjhima Nikaya III

“We do not have to seek truth. Truth is not something far away. It is the truth of the mind, truth of its activities from moment to moment. If we are aware of this moment-to-moment truth, of this whole process of time, this awareness releases consciousness or that energy to be.”
– Krishnamurti

Letting Go

“Just know what is happening in your mind – not happy or sad about it, not attached. If you suffer see it, know it, and be empty. It’s like a letter – you have to open it before you can know what’s in it.”
-Ajahn Chah

“Healing comes from letting there be room for everything: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.”
— Pema Chodron

“Stop all of your doing-ness, all of your thinking. Just be for a while. Even for only a moment. It can change everything.”
— Neale D. Walsch

“All the elements for your happiness are already here. There’s no need to run, strive, search or struggle. Just be.”
— Thich Nhat Hanh

“Detach, let go. Whenever there is any feeling of clinging, we detach from it because we know that feeling is just as it is.”
— Ajahn Chah

“Attachment constrains our vision so that we are not able to see things from a wider perspective.”
— Dalai Lama

“Let go of the battle. Breathe quietly and let it be. Let your body relax and your heart soften. Open to whatever you experience without fighting.”
-Jack Kornfield

“By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try. The world is beyond the winning.”
-Lao-Tzu

“‘Fruition’ implies that at some future time you will feel good. One of the most powerful Buddhist teachings is that as long as you are wishing for things to change, they never will. As long as you’re wanting yourself to get better, you won’t. As long as you are oriented toward the future, you can never just relax into what you already have or already are.”
– Pema Chödron

“Engrave this Quote attachment is the great fabricator of illusions; reality can be attained only by someone who is detached.”
-Simone Weil

“Attachment to spiritual things is.. just as much an attachment as inordinate love of anything else.”
-Thomas Merton

“I am like a tree in a forest. Birds come to the tree, they sit on its branches and eat its fruits. To the birds, the fruit may be sweet or sour or whatever. The birds say sweet or they say sour, but from the tree’s point of view, this is just the chattering of birds.”
– Ajahn Chah

Understanding

“The more and more you listen, the more and more you hear; the more and more you hear, the deeper and deeper your understanding becomes.”
-Dudjom Rinpoche

“I bow to my own wisdom mind
which is my best wisdom teacher,
the source of all visible and invisible qualities.
Sentient beings are always in time and place.
If sentient beings are in time,
my wisdom teacher dances magically in time.
If sentient beings are in place,
my wisdom teacher dances magically in place.
If really examined, you never remain anywhere.
You are only display.
To whatever never remains,
to you my best wisdom teacher, I bow.”
–Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

“The beauty of life is, while we cannot undo what is done, we can see it, understand it, learn from it and change. So that every new moment is spent not in regret, guilt, fear or anger, but in wisdom, understanding and love.”
-Jennifer Edwards

quotes about meditationWorking with Others

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a
listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all
of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
― Leo Buscaglia

“Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.”
― Mother Teresa

“How can I be useful, of what service can I be? There is something inside me, what can it be?”
— Vincent Van Gogh

“Everyone has the power for greatness, not for fame, but greatness, because greatness is determined by service.”
— Martin Luther King Jr.

“If you want to be great, make others feel great.”
— Ralph Marston

“Be a lamp, a lifeboat, a ladder. Help someone’s soul heal. Walk out of your house like a shepherd.”
— Rumi

“Do more than belong, participate. Do more than care, help. Do more than believe, practice.”
— William Arthur Ward

“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”
— William Arthur Ward

“I teach people to let themselves be creative.”
— Julia Cameron

“If we are to teach real peace, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children.”
— Mahatma Gandhi

Patience

“Have patience. Wait until the mud settles and the water is clear.Remain unmoving until right action arises by itself.”
-Lao Tzu

“Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Have patience with all things, But, first of all with yourself.”
-Saint Francis de Sales

Acceptance

“Man is the only creature that refuses to be what he is.”
-Albert Camus

“Give love and unconditional acceptance to those you encounter, and notice what happens.”
-Wayne Dyer

“Welcome anything that comes to you, but do not long for anything else.”
-Andre Gide

Difficulties

“Whenever doubt arises, see it simply as an obstacle, recognize it as an understanding that is calling out to be clarified or unblocked, and know that it is not a fundamental problem but simply a stage in the process of purification and learning. Allow the process to continue and complete itself, and never lose your trust or resolve.”
-Sogyal Rinpoche

“Fear is a natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.”
— Pema Chodron

“Sometimes a person might point to the roots and say that it is just here that we can find the real Dharma, while someone else might say, “Oh no it is in the flowers,” and still another will say that it is to be found in the fruit. But, of course, these different parts cannot really be separated; the roots sustain the tree in their way, and the fruit depends on the roots and leaves and branches as well.”
-Lama Govinda

“I believe all suffering is caused by ignorance. People inflict pain on others in the selfish pursuit of their happiness or satisfaction. Yet true happiness comes from a sense of peace and contentment, which in turn must be achieved through the cultivation of altruism, of love and compassion, and elimination of ignorance, selfishness, and greed…”
-Dalai Lama

“Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace.”
-Dalai Lama

“Prejudice is the child of ignorance.”
-William Hazlitt

“The greater our knowledge increases, the greater our ignorance unfolds.”
-John F. Kennedy

“Constant effort and frequent mistakes are the stepping stones to genius.”
-Elbert Hubbard

“Work joyfully and peacefully, knowing that right thoughts and right efforts will inevitably bring about right results.”
-James Allen

“The three poisons continually arise in connection with three objects. Compulsive attachment arises for objects that are pleasant or useful; aversion arises for objects that are unpleasant or harmful; and stupidity or indifference for other objects. Recognize these poisons as soon as they arise.”
– Jamgon Kongtrul Lodro Thaye

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
-Viktor E. Frankl

“When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves.”
-Viktor E. Frankl

“Difficulties and obstacles, if properly understood and used, can turn out to be an unexpected source of strength.”
-Sogyal Rinpoche

“The best way out is always through.”
— Robert Frost

“So come what may, I’ll never harm
My cheery happiness of mind.
Depression never brings me what I want;
My virtue will be warped and marred by it.”
-Nagarjuna

Connection

“You are me, and I am you.
Isn’t it obvious that we “inter-are”?
You cultivate the flower in yourself,
so that I will be beautiful.
I transform the garbage in myself,
so that you will not have to suffer.

I support you;
you support me.
I am in this world to offer you peace;
you are in this world to bring me joy.”
-Thich Nhat Hanh

“What life have you if you have not life together? There is no life that is not in community.”
-T.S. Eliot

“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”
-Mother Teresa

“I know there is strength in the differences between us. I know there is comfort, where we overlap.”
-Ani DiFranco

“Sometimes a person might point to the roots and say that it is just here that we can find the real Dharma, while someone else might say, “Oh no it is in the flowers,” and still another will say that it is to be found in the fruit. But, of course, these different parts cannot really be separated; the roots sustain the tree in their way, and the fruit depends on the roots and leaves and branches as well.”
-Lama Govinda

quote meditationHeart Practices

“Imagine vividly a situation where you have acted badly, one about which you feel guilty, and about which you wince even to think of it.Then, as you breathe in, accept total responsibility for your actions in that particular situation, without in any way trying to justify your behavior. Acknowledge exactly what you have done wrong, and wholeheartedly ask for forgiveness. Now, as you breathe out, send out reconciliation, forgiveness, healing, and understanding.”
-Sogyal Rinpoche

“Rejoicing in ordinary things is not sentimental or trite. It actually takes guts. Each time we drop our complaints and allow everyday good fortune to inspire us, we enter the warrior’s world.”
-Pema Chödron

“Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.”
— Peter Ustinov

“There is no revenge so complete as forgiveness.”
— Josh Billings

“Bring into your mind anyone against whom you have a grievance and let it go. Send that person your forgiveness.”
— D. Chopra

“I would rather be able to appreciate things I can not have than to have things I am not able to appreciate.”
-Elbert Hubbard

“Appreciate everything, even the ordinary. Especially the ordinary.”
— Pema Chodron

“Compassion allows us to bear witness to that suffering, whether it is in ourselves or others, without fear; it allows us to name injustice without hesitation, and to act strongly, with all the skill at our disposal. To develop this mind state of compassion…is to learn to live, as the Buddha put it, with sympathy for all living beings, without exception.”
― Sharon Salzberg

“One of the sanest, surest, and most generous joys of life comes from being happy over the good fortune of others.”
-Archibald Rutledge

“By appreciation, we make excellence in others our own property.”
-Voltaire (François-Marie Arouet)

True happiness comes from the joy of deeds well done, the zest of creating things new.”
— Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“Perfect happiness is the absence of striving for happiness.”
— Chuang Tzu

“Happiness depends upon ourselves.”
— Aristotle

“Discovering real goodness comes from appreciating very simple experiences.”
– Chögyam Trungpa

“Appreciation is an excellent thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us, as well.”
— Voltaire

“Live your life with an appreciation of coincidences and you connect with the field of infinite possibilities.”
— Deepak Chopra

Karma

“One action produces a reaction; that is karma.”
-Lama Yeshe

“The very term karma or action is a term of active force, which indicates that future events are within your hands. Since action is a phenomenon that is committed by a person, a living being, it is within your own hands whether or not you engage in actions.”
-Dalai Lama

Ethics

“Today tell yourself every word I utter will be chosen consciously. I will refrain from complaints, criticism and condemnation.”
— D. Chopra

“Discretion in speech is more than eloquence.”
— Francis Bacon

“It is a great thing to know the season for speech and the season for silence.”
— Seneca

Peace

“It is possible to live in peace.”
— Mahatma Gandhi

“If you want peace, then let it be the peace of wisdom. That’s enough!”
— Ajahn Chah

“I do not want the peace which passeth all understanding, I want the understanding that bringeth peace.”
— Helen Keller

“If in our daily life we can smile, if we can be peaceful and happy, not only we, but everyone will profit from it.”
— Thich Nhat Hanh

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