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 (Sep 25, 2023)

View Archives


Shape Of Silence

Kent Nerburn

The silence is profound this morning. It is not portentous; there seems to be nothing in the waiting. It is a gentle silence, liquid and pastel, a shimmer on still waters. It is good to listen to t...

Read Passage

11K reads, 17 comments

End Of The World

Dougald Hine

The end of the world as we know it is not the end of the world ... it is also the end of a way of knowing the world. "When a world ends, its systems and stories come apart, even the largest of th...

Read Passage

10K reads, 21 comments

You Gotta Wobble Before You Stand

Roger S. Keyes

Hokusai says look carefully. He says pay attention, notice. He says keep looking, stay curious. He says there is no end to seeing. He says look forward to getting old. He says keep changing, y...

Read Passage

10K reads, 7 comments

The Extraordinary In The Ordinary

Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

Our acceptance of the ordinary is part of our spiritual maturity and capacity to be of service. It also helps us to avoid the trap of inflation, which can easily catch us when we glimpse a world beyon...

Read Passage

9K reads, 13 comments

Irony Of Marriage

Neale Donald Walsch

Largely, marriage has been used by those societies, religions, and families as a mini-prison, as kind of a contractual arrangement that says: "Everything will be, now and forevermore, the wa...

Read Passage

9K reads, 24 comments


Thich Nhat Hanh

Emptiness does not mean nothingness. Saying that we are empty does not mean that we do not exist. No matter if something is full or empty, that thing clearly needs to be there in the first place. When...

Read Passage

8K reads, 16 comments

A Turtle's Silver Bead Of Quietude

Gayle Boss

The day is bright and warm for December, but the logs in the marsh pond are bare. Spring to summer into early fall they served, on sunny days, as spa to a dozen or so painted turtles. I would see ...

Read Passage

8K reads, 9 comments

Letting Someone Know They're Not Alone Is No Small Thing

Deborah Hawkins

Months ago, I decided to explore volunteering for a hospice organization. My initial curiosity came up when I contemplated wanting to use my talents for listening and putting things into words. I e...

Read Passage

8K reads, 24 comments


Wayne Dyer

Forgiveness is the most powerful thing that you can do for your physiology and your spirituality, and it remains one of the least attractive things to us, largely because our egos rule so unequivocall...

Read Passage

8K reads, 19 comments

Our Practice Is To Close The Gap

Charlotte Joko Beck

Our whole life consists of this little subject looking outside itself for an object. But if you take something that is limited, like body and mind, and look for something outside it, that something be...

Read Passage

8K reads, 18 comments

Don't Waste A Curse On The Universe

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Don't look for the flaws as you go through life;    And even when you find them, It is wise and kind to be somewhat blind    And look for the virtue behind them. For the cl...

Read Passage

7K reads, 13 comments

Radical Optimism

Rev. Joan Halifax

Radical optimism is a big view of the moment that does not include outcome. Another way of saying this is that the radical optimist is not undertaking an investment plan. Rather he or she is involved ...

Read Passage

7K reads, 18 comments

Being Acted Through

Joanna Macy

Here's a discovery we can make along our ecological Pilgrim's Progress: the discovery of what can happen through us. If we are the rocks dancing, then that which evolved us from those rocks ca...

Read Passage

7K reads, 6 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