Awakin Readings

Remembering the Sacred

Every week, we post a short reading from various wisdom traditions that points to the sacred. Each excerpt is also accompanied by an audio recording, an illustration and translations. Subscribe Here.

Read Latest (Jun 5, 2023)

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Good Bones, Pushing Water

Carrie Newcomer

We had a small water crisis at our home this week.  The break happened within a wall, and so we didn’t realize at first that a pipe had begun to leak until morning when my husband noticed w...

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14K reads, 19 comments

How Much Silence Is Too Much?

Gal Beckerman

Ours is a noisy country. We’ve been rebellious, insolent shouters since the beginning. We invent freak shows and circuses and casinos. Talk too loud. Our public spaces honk and whistle at us. We...

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12K reads, 21 comments

Gamble On Humanity

Ayisha Siddiqa

What if the future is soft and revolution is so kind that there is no end to us in sight. Whole cities breathe and bad luck is bested by a promise to the leaves. To withstand your own end is dif...

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11K reads, 12 comments

The Cauldron Of Time

James O'dea

We who live and breathe in a body see the Creator’s signature as living gold: the gold of a magnificent sunlight splashed on the active rivers of our hearts’ generosity, pouring molten ...

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11K reads, 23 comments

What Exactly Is Love?

J. Krishnamurti

Fear is not love, dependence is not love, jealousy is not love, possessiveness and domination are not love, responsibility and duty are not love, self-pity is not love, the agony of not being loved is...

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9K reads, 12 comments

Appearance As A Gift


Our whole experience of life is a relationship. Every single moment is centered in the way we relate to what is happening. To understand this more deeply it helps us to recognize core issues that m...

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8K reads, 13 comments

Being Nice Isn't The Same As Being Kind

Donna Cameron

Kind people go beyond what's expected of them. They go beyond the easy response to offer the best of who they are. They do it without expectation of something in return. They do it because of who ...

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8K reads, 19 comments

Welcoming The Stranger

Wakanyi Hoffman

My husband, children, and I have lived in 7 countries for the last decade and a half. We have always been the strangers knocking on new neighbors' doors while simultaneously communing with the str...

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8K reads, 7 comments

How We Wrestle Is Who We Are

Brian Doyle

I remember pacing hospital and house and hills, and thinking that his operations would either work or not and he would either live or die. There was a certain clarity there; I used to crawl into that ...

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8K reads, 12 comments

Reclaim Your Chicken

Jon Bernie

Being does not require thought. Be fully attentive, gently attentive. Trust the natural ease of awareness. Make no effort. No trying, no doing, no defensiveness. Just gazing and seeing without resista...

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7K reads, 13 comments

Presence Of Things Beyond Flesh

Drew Lanham

Lecturing has always come easily to me. Backed by the technical, the theoretical, a few supporting slides, and a captive audience of college students or peers, I've given hundreds of presentations...

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7K reads, 12 comments

Look Around In Wonder

David Griswold

Look around, look around, Look around in wonder, Trace the thunderous cloud above That feeds the river under. Look above and look below And look at last within, You'll see a river running th...

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6K reads, 14 comments

An Ode To Low Expectations

James Parker

o there i was, staring at my mug of tea. It was 1993. I was sitting over a plate of eggs in the New Piccadilly Café in Soho, London. Things were not going well. As a man, as a person, as a u...

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6K reads, 11 comments


Awakin Readings started in 1996 as a way to remind ourselves of universal truths. Soon after, it began to be utilized as a discussion topic in weekly Awakin Circles in living rooms around the globe. Different artists and photographers offer a unique image for every reading; an audio recording is offered each week; and many volunteers collaborate to translate it into various languages. Our repository has over a thousand readings.

What is perhaps noteworthy about this effort is that it is entirely volunteer-run, and non-commercial, and has stayed that way for the last 25 years. For the many dozens of volunteer who contribute every week, this website is a labor of love.

We are grateful to Somik Raha, Liz Helgesen, and Rupali Bhuva for their consistent service for more than a decade. This website wouldn't be possible without the pioneering example Dinesh and Harshida Mehta's Awakin Circle of 25 years, and the larger field of ServiceSpace. Thank you.

To get engaged, join our newsletter or join the ServiceSpace community to explore volunteering.

"Compassion is a spontaneous movement of wholeness. It is not a studied decision to help the poor, to be kind to the unfortunate. Compassion has a tremendous momentum that naturally, choicelessly moves us to worthy action. It has the force of intelligence, creativity, and the strength of love. This vast intelligence that orders the cosmos is available to all. The beauty of life, the wonder of living, is that we share creativity, intelligence, and unlimited potential with the rest of the cosmos. To realize that we are not simply physical beings on a material planet, but that we are whole beings, each a miniature cosmos, each related to all of life in intimate, profound ways, should radically transform how we perceive ourselves, our environments, our social problems. Nothing can ever be isolated from wholeness." --Vimala Thakar