Easwaran’s Talks & Writings

Get inspiration and guidance directly from Easwaran in excerpts from his books, articles, and audio and video talks.

  • The Need for a Teacher

    Just as we need a guide to help us scale a mountain for the first time, Easwaran writes, we need an experienced teacher to point out the pitfalls and guide us safely on the spiritual path.

  • All of Us Are One

    "You are that," says a sage to his son, meaning that the same Self is in all of us. Commenting on this excerpt from the Upanishads, Easwaran shows how to overcome negative discrimination and find unity with all.

  • God is Not a Metaphor

    Whatever we are seeking in life, Easwaran says in this video, whether it be love, wealth, or prestige, we are really searching for our real Self, which is divine.

  • Easwaran Digital Library

    The Easwaran Digital Library offers access to an extensive archive of Easwaran’s audio and video talks. We invite you to enjoy these talks and absorb his timeless teachings.

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  • The Other Shore

    We each have within us a presence which death can never touch, Easwaran says in this article. That presence is the Self, and we realize it through meditation.

  • Choose Kindness

    Being kind doesn’t mean being a doormat, Easwaran explains. He gives tips on training your mind to be strong, calm, and compassionate in all situations.

  • The Transformation of Anger

    Easwaran shows us in this audio talk how to transform anger from a harmful to a healing force, with practical tips from his own life and examples from Gandhi.

  • You Are That

    In this short video clip, less than five minutes long, Easwaran explains the underlying meaning and practical implications of the ancient spiritual statement, "You Are That."

  • Finding Unity in Conflict

    Easwaran describes how we can strengthen personal relationships even in the midst of conflicts, by focusing on the common ground.

  • Learning to Forgive Ourselves

    As we grow in spiritual awareness, we become more aware of mistakes we’ve made in the past. It’s a painful process, but Easwaran gives us practical, compassionate advice for dealing with guilt.

  • Surfing the Waves of Life

    Watching surfers out at sea, Easwaran invites us to train the mind and ride life’s waves with the same effortless grace.

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  • Forgiving Others, Forgiving Ourselves

    Lasting forgiveness is very hard to achieve, but it’s essential if we are to live in peace with ourselves. Easwaran gives practical spiritual guidance.

  • Answering the Need of the Times

    How can meditation help the world? Easwaran explains how this ancient spiritual practice helps us to create positive change in modern times.

  • An Uncluttered Mind

    Easwaran explains in this audio talk how attachment affects the workings of the mind. Meditation helps us to declutter our homes and our lives.

  • Invitation to a Journey

    Easwaran tells the story of Humphrey the whale and presents the spiritual life as a great adventure, encouraging us to put full effort into our meditation practice.

  • Good Will, Good Health

    In this 30-minute audio talk, Easwaran explains the connection between training the mind and improving our physical, mental, and emotional health.

  • The Visit to Gandhi's Ashram

    Easwaran describes how he went to Gandhi’s ashram and watched the Mahatma meditating on the Bhagavad Gita. The visit had a profound influence on him.

  • Raja Yoga

    Meditation makes us kings and queens of our own lives, Easwaran explains in this seven-minute video clip. We gradually bring our thoughts under our control, enabling us to make our fullest contribution to life.

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  • Spiritual Education & Right Occupation

    Addressing the age-old question, “What should I do with my life?”, Easwaran shows us in this 30-minute audio talk how the great mystics of the world can help us find answers.

  • Slowing Down for What Matters Most

    Easwaran shows how we can find opportunities to slow down throughout our day, calming our minds at work and at home.

  • Original Goodness

    Using the metaphor of the lotus, Easwaran introduces the concept of original goodness, our real nature.

  • Simple Is Beautiful

    An ideal thinker is like an ideal shopper, Easwaran says – focused on essentials. With spiritual training, we can have minds free of worry and full of peace.

  • The Power of the Mantram

    Easwaran explains how he came to use a mantram, overcoming his skepticism and discovering its power. He explains what a mantram is and how to use it.

  • What Do Children Need?

    Easwaran describes the most important gifts we can give to our children and teenagers – gifts which will improve all our relationships.

  • Bringing Our Children Up Wisely

    Easwaran describes three stages in the upbringing of children. He explains what we can do to help them grow up to be secure and selfless.

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  • Thomas à Kempis Talk #1

    Listen to Easwaran's lively hour-long introduction to “The Imitation of Christ” by Thomas à Kempis. This is the first in a series of audio talks.

  • Living in Harmony

    Easwaran explains in this audio talk what it means to live in harmony: harmony with oneself, harmony with others, and harmony with the environment.

  • Living in Harmony With Others & Ourselves

    In this audio talk, Easwaran shares anecdotes and strategies for finding harmony with others and ourselves in daily life.

  • Easwaran Describes His Visit to Gandhi

    Listen to Easwaran’s account of his visit to Gandhi’s ashram, where he watched Gandhi meditating on verses from the Bhagavad Gita.

  • One-Pointed Attention

    Easwaran shares practical examples of how we can integrate one-pointed attention into our everyday lives in this 30-minute audio talk.

  • Training the Mind

    In this 30-minute talk, Easwaran shares the benefits and challenges of training the mind through meditation.

  • Meditation & Right Occupation

    When we meditate, we don’t do it just for ourselves, as Easwaran explains in this audio talk. We are trustees for this earth and for all its inhabitants.

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  • Years of Growth: Easwaran as a Young Adult

    Easwaran recounts his early years as a boy and young student growing up in India, and describes how Mahatma Gandhi and the Bhagavad Gita came into his life.

  • The Goal of Life: Part 1

    This audio talk contains Easwaran’s commentary on the supreme goal of life, which we can all reach through sincere, sustained spiritual practice.

  • The Goal of Life: Part 2

    Easwaran addresses the theme of human evolution and comments on a Sanskrit verse in the second part of his audio talk.

  • Meditation: Artistry for Living

    Meditation comes first among spiritual disciplines, and it’s the perfect way to start the day. Easwaran offers brief instructions and an overview of the benefits.

  • What Is a Mantram & What Can It Do?

    Easwaran explains the meaning and purpose of the mantram, describes its extraordinary power and invites us to try it out for ourselves.

  • Slow Down Your Mind: An Experiment

    There’s a two-way relationship between a speeded-up mind and negative emotions, Easwaran writes. Meditation gets us back in control.

  • The Tamarind Tree

    The leaves of the tamarind tree illustrate a lesson from Easwaran’s Granny, to show the power of ordinary people to change the world.

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  • The Benefits of One-Pointed Attention

    One-pointedness is essential for clear thinking and smooth functioning of the mind. Easwaran points out pitfalls and opportunities with this practice.

  • Training the Senses: The Power of Conditioning

    With a considerable touch of humor, Easwaran introduces us to the challenges and benefits of sense training – a route to perfect freedom in the mind.

  • Spiritual Fellowship

    Answering a question about loneliness on the spiritual path, Easwaran gives four pieces of practical advice about spiritual fellowship.

  • Spiritual Reading

    Easwaran gives four suggestions for finding inspiration, instruction and companionship from spiritual reading.

  • The Mind & the Elephant Trunk

    With the story of the elephant walking along by market stalls, Easwaran draws an analogy with our wayward minds.

  • Choosing & Using a Mantram

    Easwaran gives detailed instructions on selecting a mantram, and on how and when to use it. Every repetition helps.

  • A Love That Lasts

    All relationships require a great deal of patient, selfless work, Easwaran explains in this article. He also shares how the capacity for this work is within each and everyone of us.

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  • Real Life Tales of the Mantram

    Easwaran opens this lively audio talk with his story of the student who panicked on the eve of his finals. The mantram came to the rescue.

  • The First Chapter of “Passage Meditation”

    This long excerpt is the whole of the first chapter from Easwaran’s classic manual, with detailed instructions in his method of passage meditation.

  • The Eight-Point Program in the Second Half of Life

    How should our spiritual practice evolve and develop as we enter our retirement years? Easwaran offers practical guidance, point by point.

  • The Second Half of Life

    The second half of life is a time when we should grow to our full stature as human beings, Easwaran writes, and focus on what matters most.

  • The Stages of Life

    In ancient India, human life was divided into four stages. Easwaran explains the inner meaning of these four stages as a spiritual framework for life today.

  • The Mantram at the Time of Death

    The mantram offers huge emotional and spiritual support when we’re with someone who’s dying, and when we face death ourselves. Easwaran explains what happens at death and how we can prepare for it through our own ongoing spiritual practice.

  • The Elephant Sculptor

    Through the story of the elephant sculptor, learn how passage meditation can help you make your life a work of art and become the person you want to be.

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  • Instructions in Meditation From the Gita

    In this six-minute video clip, Easwaran draws on verses from the Bhagavad Gita to present his instructions in meditation. When the mind is stilled, we will discover the divine spark within us.

  • Dealing Calmly With Criticism

    In this four-minute video clip, Easwaran offers practical advice, and a touch of humor, to help us face criticism with a calm, inquisitive mind.

  • Charles the Cat

    In this full-length video, Easwaran reflects gently on the passing away of Charles, a BMCM cat, and goes on to explore the meaning of death and the urgency of our spiritual practice.

  • Building the Will

    Everything in life, everything in spiritual growth, Easwaran says, depends on strengthening the will. In this article he gives a number of small, practical steps showing where we can start.

  • The Mantram Repeating Itself

    In this short excerpt, Easwaran explains what it means to hear the mantram constantly repeating itself, and how we reach this advanced state.

  • A Light in the Darkness

    To make our full contribution, Easwaran writes, we need to train the mind to be at peace and then radiate that peace to all those around us.

  • The Power of the Bhagavad Gita

    In this article, taken from the introduction to his translation, Easwaran describes the timeless message of the Gita and the impact it had on his life.

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  • What Is Nirvana?

    How to describe the indescribable? In this eight-minute clip, Easwaran tells the story of a debate between a ​great king and a leading Buddhist monk.

  • Advice From Saint Teresa

    Even in the midst of work we can deepen our spiritual practice, as Easwaran explains in this 10-minute video. He is commenting on a text by Saint Teresa of Avila and showing her relevance today.

  • Learning to Love

    Commenting on words from Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Easwaran assures us that we can all expand our capacity to love. He outlines five conditions for building this vital skill.

  • The Juggler & Maya

    Easwaran tells an anecdote about a juggler, to illustrate the concept of maya and the illusion of separateness. Meditation helps us go beyond maya and realize the unity of life.

  • The Key to the Art of Living

    Spiritual wisdom alone is not enough, Easwaran says in this excerpt from "The Bhagavad Gita for Daily Living" – it is our ability to translate that wisdom into practical daily action that is the key to the art of living.

  • The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

    Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras give a glimpse into the workings of the mind, Easwaran says in this video, but it is only through regular meditation that we can realize this spiritual wisdom for ourselves.

  • The Lesson of the Lilac

    “Nothing in life is more pressing than learning to face death,” Easwaran writes, in this uplifting article full of stories, insights, and advice. He explains how to use our understanding of death and dying to live life more meaningfully right now.

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  • Saint Francis: An Instrument of Peace

    It is through systematic meditation, as Easwaran says in this commentary on the Prayer of Saint Francis, that we can transform negative states of mind to become instruments of peace and love.

  • Saint Francis: Building Faith & Hope

    Just like Saint Francis, Easwaran says, we can all transform our lives and help everyone around us.

  • A Wiser Way of Living

    When we don’t know our true Self, Easwaran says in this video, we can end up making absurd demands on life. We need meditation to help us grow in beauty, love, and patience.

  • Spiritual Revolution

    A spiritual revolution is needed now more than ever, Easwaran says, and “We can all play a part in this peaceful revolution by practicing the spiritual disciplines which have come down the centuries in the great religions of the world.”

  • A Deep, Personal Longing

    Whether we are drawn to the Buddha, the Divine Mother, Sri Krishna, or Jesus, Easwaran points out in this video that we can each stoke a deep, personal longing for understanding that will take us far on the spiritual path.

  • I Give, Therefore I Am

    “The more you look upon your life as a trust for the benefit of others,” Easwaran says in this article, “the less complicated – and the more effective and satisfying – your work and relationships will become.”

  • The Outer Teacher and the Teacher Within

    In this short article Easwaran explains the relationship between the spiritual teacher and the student, and the meaning of the word "guru." The outer teacher makes us aware of our own deepest Self, our Atman, within.

  • Teacher and Student

    In this special video to celebrate Easwaran’s life and teachings, Easwaran describes the role of the spiritual teacher.

  • Life is a Trust

    “Our highest duty is to give back to life,” Easwaran says in this article that highlights the connections between our daily work and our spiritual practice.

  • Will & Desire: The Great Race

    “The power of desire is the power of the will,” Easwaran says in this article. He goes on to describe the “great race” that takes place between our will and desire in a story that might make you laugh out loud.

  • Audiobook Excerpt:
    Will & Desire

    “The power of desire is the power of the will,” Easwaran says in this excerpt of the audiobook recording of "Essence of the Upanishads" read by long-time passage meditators and actor, Paul Bazely.

  • The Gift of Time

    In this 10-minute video, Easwaran gives tips on the best way to entertain children – by slowing down and working with them.

  • The Aims of Education

    In this audio talk, Easwaran comments on the aims of education according to the ancient Indian tradition: to gain peace of mind, to live in harmony with others, and to live in harmony with our environment.

  • A New Year's Message

    In this 30-minute video, Easwaran encourages us all to celebrate the new year by rededicating ourselves to the supreme goal.

  • Love Alters Not

    In this 30-minute video, Easwaran comments on Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116, showing how its message about love is perfectly in line with our spiritual practice.

  • To Love is To Act

    Drawing on the life of Gandhi and on verses from the Bhagavad Gita in this audio talk, Easwaran comments on the concept of love as action.

  • The More We Love, the More We Can Love

    In this short excerpt, Easwaran describes how we can grow our capacity to love – starting with close friends and family and then expanding to encompass the whole world.

  • The Lesson of the Hummingbird

    We are each responsible for caring for the environment, Easwaran writes in this article, and it is only through accessing our deeper resources that we’ll be able to create lasting change.

  • Lasting Change Through Nonviolence

    Commenting on some key quotes from Mahatma Gandhi, Easwaran explains how we can use the principle of nonviolence in our actions towards others and towards the environment, to create positive change.

  • Ten Aids to Meditation

    The more we try to identify with the positive forces in our lives, Easwaran says in this video, the deeper will be our meditation, and the richer our contribution to life.

  • The Power of Ordinary People

    Each of us has a unique contribution to make to life and collectively we can make a lasting positive impact on the world.

  • Science, Technology & Faith

    “We are what our deep, driving desire is. . .”  – with this quote from the Upanishads, Easwaran points out the pitfalls of putting our faith in science and technology, and reminds us to turn to what is timeless and divine.

  • Meditation Gives us a Goal in Life

    “To make wise choices in life, even in simple matters,” Easwaran says in this article, “we have to have a goal to which we can refer every day.” Meditation and the inspirational passages give us that goal.

  • Can Meditation Really Help the World?

    Answering questions about the power of meditation to bring about change, Easwaran says that through meditation “we will begin to understand that a human being can become an immense spiritual force barely contained in a physical form.”

  • Learning to Swim

    “Once we have learned to dive deep in meditation,” Easwaran says in this excerpt, “there is no end to the resources we can bring to our daily life; there is no challenge we will be unable to meet.”

  • Desire, Our Real Wealth

    In this 30-minute video, Easwaran explains the power of desire, and how we can channel that power to deepen our meditation.

  • Nirvana: A Farther Shore

    “We are all moving towards nirvana, the Buddha says. No one will ever be lost.” Commenting on the life and teachings of the Buddha, Easwaran urges us to take to meditation and go beyond death.

  • Stress & Self-Will

    In this 30-minute video, Easwaran comments on how meditation and all the eight points can transform self-will and reduce stress.

  • Our Real Identity

    We are far more than merely physical creatures, Easwaran explains in this article. We can each find our true, divine Self through meditation and spiritual disciplines.

  • Our Real Self

    This video, created for the Life Celebration event at Ramagiri Ashram, presents clips from talks by Easwaran over the different decades of his teaching career. The theme throughout the talks is finding our real Self, which is in each and all of us.

  • The Enlightened Ones

    In this 30-minute, subtitled video, Easwaran comments on verses from the Buddha describing what it means to rest our mind in the Self.

  • The Field & the Garden

    “In the soil of the mind we sow thoughts,” Easwaran writes in this article. He shows how, by tending to the garden of the mind, we gain great benefits in daily life.

  • Climbing the Peaks of the Spirit

    In this 30-minute talk, Easwaran compares serious spiritual seekers to great mountaineers and lays down the conditions for transforming personal desire into spiritual yearning.

  • Integrated Yoga: The Three Paths to Illumination

    Commenting on a verse from the Bhagavad Gita, Easwaran describes three paths to illumination – selfless action, spiritual wisdom, and love and devotion – all of which are based upon the practice of meditation.

  • Gandhi, Man of God

    In this 30-minute talk, Easwaran comments on excerpts from Gandhi’s writings to inspire us to deepen our spiritual practice.

  • The Secret of Selfless Action

    “Everywhere,” Easwaran writes, “the best work is prompted not by the profit motive but by love.” Read more on the link between meditation, purpose, and selfless action.

  • Nonviolence in Practice

    Commenting on Gandhi's teachings on nonviolence, Easwaran writes, “Because love draws a deeper response out of everybody, love is not just the most idealistic basis for action but also the most practical.”

  • The Stages of Life

    In a video talk on the last chapter of the Dhammapada, Easwaran comments on the Buddha’s teachings and gives an inspiring description of the person who has attained nirvana.

  • The Mantram: Keeping the Mind Steady

    “The mantram is that which enables us to cross the sea of the mind.” Read more of Easwaran's teachings on the mantram.

  • Seeing God Everywhere

    “When you are always aware of the unity of life, you see the Lord in every living creature,” Easwaran writes in this article. And you will conduct yourself accordingly, with love and respect for all.

  • The Fight for the Future of the Earth

    “The place where our environmental problems begin is the mind,” Easwaran writes. He explains how meditating and training the mind contribute to our care for the world.

  • Nine Tips for a Crisis

    Read this article from Easwaran and find how we can each strengthen ourselves through our spiritual practice, even in the midst of a crisis.

  • Two Paths

    This article from Easwaran describes how we can choose the path that leads to fulfillment over the path that leads to sorrow.

  • Living in Wisdom: The Bhagavad Gita for Daily Living

    This excerpt from Easwaran’s commentary is on verses which contain, as he writes, “the key to the interpretation of the entire Bhagavad Gita.”

  • Nine Ways to Work in Unity

    From recognizing our individual contribution, to understanding how meditation helps us to reduce our ego, Easwaran shares nine ways to work in unity.

  • Lessons on Love From Shakespeare and the Gita

    “Love has to grow, year by year, almost day by day,” Easwaran writes in this article. “Through the practice of meditation and the mantram we can learn to be steadfast and loyal in our love, whatever happens.”

  • Easwaran and Christine: The Early Years

    Easwaran came to the US in 1959 as a professor on the Fulbright exchange program. In 1960 he moved to Berkeley and met Christine. In this excerpt from one of his books he describes their first few years together.

  • Celebrating Christine Easwaran's 101st Birthday

    This special video to celebrate Christine Easwaran's 101st birthday includes excerpts from talks by Easwaran and interviews with Christine. Christine and Easwaran describe how they met and how they started Easwaran's work.

  • Put Your Meditation First

    Our special Fall 2022 Journal features writings from our archive from both Christine and Easwaran – in this case, on the importance of a regular schedule for meditation.

  • Introduction to the Upanishads

    In this excerpt from a new audiobook, Easwaran describes his first encounter with the Upanishads and the impact that they had on him.

  • The Ticket Inspector

    Easwaran finds an entertaining way to explain the importance of spiritual detachment, and how to cultivate it.

  • Seeing From the Perspective of the Self

    Commenting on a verse from the Gita, Easwaran describes how we can make wise choices that serve the good of all.

  • A Living Faith

    Read Easwaran’s teachings on how we can all develop our determination, unify our desires, and discover our unity with all life.

  • The Long Journey of Evolution

    “The practice of meditation has been described marvelously as taking our evolution into our own hands.” Learn more from Easwaran on how we can each move forward in our own spiritual journey.

  • The Real Peace Workers

    Writing about the skills of peacemaking, Easwaran tells us what those skills are, why they are so vital for the world and our children, and how we can acquire them.