"May I accept my sadness knowing that I am not my sadness."

At the end of her interview with Krista Tippett at the Chautauqua Institution in New York on July 11, 2012, Zen abbot Joan Halifax led the audience through this "guided meditation on encountering grief — grief as something ordinary, part of life and humanity." Please download it and share with friends and family.

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Thank you for helping me take 10 minutes out of my day!

My grandfather passed away recently. This will be so helpful for me and my loved ones. Thank you for sharing this with the public!

Thank you for the guided meditation by Joan Halifax

Hello, it is saying file not found when I try to download it. :(

Susan Leem's picture

Shara, did you try clicking just once on the "download" button under the "share" button?

Trent Gilliss's picture

Shara, thank you for alerting us to this problem. The issue is corrected and you should now be able to right-click the download link and then save it to your desktop or mobile device. Cheers!

I have tried and tried to download this meditation and keep getting 'File Not Found"

Please help.


Trent Gilliss's picture

Rosie, this issue should now be corrected. You can try again by right-clicking the "download it" link and then save it to your desktop or mobile device.

awesome brief exploration of grief and the truths of it's universality. thank you


One of our fine priests used this quiattoon, a sort of parable, from Chesterton at the conclusion of his homily yesterday. It's quite telling and although food for thought, even more cause for comtemplation and perhaps redoubling of efforts to stand up, in Faith. This was aimed squarely at what the government is doing regarding Religious Liberty. Suppose that a great commotion arises in the street about something, let us say a lamp-post, which many influential persons desire to pull down. A grey-clad monk, who is the spirit of the Middle Ages, is approached upon the matter, and begins to say, in the arid manner of the Schoolmen, “Let us first of all consider, my brethren, the value of Light. If Light be in itself good—” At this point he is somewhat excusably knocked down. All the people make a rush for the lamp-post, the lamp-post is down in ten minutes, and they go about congratulating each other on their unmediaeval practicality. But as things go on they do not work out so easily. Some people have pulled the lamp-post down because they wanted the electric light; some because they wanted old iron; some because they wanted darkness, because their deeds were evil. Some thought it not enough of a lamp-post, some too much; some acted because they wanted to smash municipal machinery; some because they wanted to smash something. And there is war in the night, no man knowing whom he strikes. So, gradually and inevitably, to-day, to-morrow, or the next day, there comes back the conviction that the monk was right after all, and that all depends on what is the philosophy of Light. Only what we might have discussed under the gas-lamp, we now must discuss in the dark. -GK Chesterton, Heretics (1905) [Nice quote.]

Yoga and Meditation both are very important for healthier life, Thank you for the guided meditation by Joan Halifax.

The first time I heard guided meditation was on a Spanish website that discuss these issues. Having a good voice for narrating a guided meditation is not easy to find. We must have a soft voice and pleasant to transport to a relaxed state of consciousness.

The voice is essential. Do you know of a resource for other short meditations that would be available in a similar format?

10 minute meditation is very helpful and effective for whole day or to make day effective. So start doing meditation from today to make your life happy and successful.

My mother is currently in a Hospice Residence and has been for the past 3 months. Watching her very very slow decline is agony. Listening to this guided meditation lightens the pain...

I love you, Roshi Joan Halifax.. Thank-you :)

Thanks for sharing this beautiful meditation on grief.
Valerie Stillman

Thank you for this gentle supportive meditation, it is lovely and I needed it today, as my friend passed away yesterday. Many blessings

This was amazing! Can you recommend a resource for other short meditations like this?

I suffer from a great deal of survivor's guilt from my time in combat in Afghanistan. Many of my friends never came home. This meditation helps me be at peace, and for that I am grateful.

It's obvious the guide knows grief personally. Very good meditation.

...we lost a family member 5 hours ago...I found this meditation to be calming and grounding in the midst of our grief. Thank you for this gift...

Dear Joan, I have never had the honor of meeting you, yet my deceased wife Susan Morton of Tucson AZ did correspond & I believe (?)meet with you during our 2 1/2 year journey through stage 4 pancreatic cancer. We went to your monastery and had plans to meet you, yet at that time you were not well enough to do so. We understood. Susan's final healing came to pass on 12/27/13. I have mush gratitude for the inspiration & support you provided my Susan. With blessings to you & your work, Respectfully yours Michael Morton

This is a very nice piece of work. Thank you for sharing and providing the resource.

I still miss my beloved so very much. I will always miss him. I am trying to be open to the pain of grief.

My mother passed away recently and this was very helpful thank you.

My long posting just got cut off at the end before I could post it. Please contact me. My 53 year old son died a year ago and I need help from Joan and to deal with the complicated effect it has had on me.

I lost my Great uncle, my helped uncle raise me when my dad wasn't there i called him a few hrs before he died he said he was excided for my sweet 16 then he was gone i didnt know he was gonna go nothing was wrong I miss him and Im still grieving then on my birthday my mom lost her close friend now my mom friend's mom is in hospice