This article is adapted from Lodro Rinzler’s new book “Take Back Your Mind: Buddhist Advice for Anxious Times”

“We’re all born naked and the rest is drag.”

— RuPaul Charles

RuPaul Charles has revolutionized drag culture and has made it accessible like no one else. He has a number of catchphrases he is fond of repeating including “We’re all born naked and the rest is drag,” which is perhaps the most accurate depiction of the Buddhist notion of samsara I have ever heard.

Samsara is a Sanskrit term which denotes the cycle of suffering we perpetuate in every single moment of our lives. It is how we constantly wrap ourselves in a cocoon made up of our passion…

The below is an excerpt from the brand new book “Take Back Your Mind: Buddhist Advice for Anxious Times”

Recently, I was at dinner with friends. The music was pleasant enough, the food tasty, and the company divine. It’s rare this particular group gathers together so it felt like a real treat. At some point, the topic of politics came up (as it tends to at times), and I noticed when my friend Jonathan changed the subject. Later on, while we were exiting the restaurant, I took him aside and asked how he was doing. …

First the bad news: anxiety exists (sorry). As I talk about in my new book, Take Back Your Mind: Buddhist Advice for Anxious Times, it shows up as this veil that separates us from the world around us and sometimes it feels like that veil is impossible to lift. The other day, I got an email from a meditation student of mine who went to the doctor after facing some pretty horrible circumstances. The diagnosis in the half-hour consult? “You will be anxious for the rest of your life.” No wonder she wrote to me, terrified. …

How are you feeling right now?

Photo by Wolfgang Hasselmann on Unsplash

Having taught it for 19 years, people often ask me about the benefits of meditation practice. My go-to answer is a balancing act of the scientifically proven results — you sleep better, develop a better relationship to stress, improve productivity, to name a few — and my personal experience that my practice has allowed me to show up more fully and authentically for the rest of my life. It has also helped me get really good at holding space for people when they are deeply suffering. …

Photo by Moritz Kindler on Unsplash

Given the times we are in, perhaps I should start with a joke: a woman hosts a costume party in her home where everyone is supposed to show up dressed as an emotion. The woman is shocked when she opens her front door and her friend is completely naked, except for a pear around his penis. “Larry! What are you supposed to be?” she exclaims. “What?” he says, “It’s not obvious? I’m fucking ‘dis pear!” Needless to say, despair is an ugly emotion.

Despair, alongside fear, anxiety and panic seem to wait at the door for us quite regularly these…

Yesterday I took my dog to the dog park in our small town. Free of iPhones, televisions, and crowds I figured we’d play some fetch and relax. Yet what did the only other two humans at the park want to talk about? How the local Walmart had sold out of Purell due to fear of the Coronavirus. It seems like no matter where you go or what you’re up to, the news of this disease will follow.

As a result, we are facing a time of unprecedented anxiety and fear. As the Coronavirus continues to spread and the death toll…

I’ll never forget the morning in early 2012 I woke up and read an email from someone I had never met. It began, “Dear Lordo — you are a hipster f*ggot b*tch.”

The gentleman went on to say that I should “take off the f*cking rimmed glasses, put on an orange robe and stop f*cking girls.” This raised many questions at the time, such as, “How would I see?” “Can my robe be a bath robe?” “Will my girlfriend be okay with a sexless life together?” This email, while largely bizarre and misinformed, caught my eye. …

Alternative cover art for “The Buddha Walks into a Bar”

If you have not tamed the enemy of your own anger

Combating outer opponents will only make them multiply.

Therefore, with an army of loving kindness and compassion,

To tame your own mind is the practice of a Bodhisattva.

- Ngulchu Thogme

When I was young I had an alarm clock shaped like a Japanese samurai, with a sword in its hand and a clock in its belly. For the ten years it lasted I would wake up every morning with the sound of a warrior yelling in Japanese, “Wake up! Wake up! It is time for the battle!”


It’s January, and that means bazillions of new meditators aiming to make a change. But here’s a statistic that hasn’t changed in years: out of the millions of Americans who set a New Year’s resolution for themselves only a small percent are successful at achieving them. It’s not easy to intentionally effect change in your life, yet through setting an intention and building a lifestyle around that motivation it can get easier.

Setting an Intention

If you want to create a change in your life, you can begin by clarifying your intention for doing so. Start by sitting up straight…

First thing’s first: it’s broken my heart too. I don’t know when you’ll be reading this. Right now I am heartbroken by the rampant police brutality that has resulted in the deaths of way too many people of color. I am heartbroken by the giant gap between the rich and the poor. I am heartbroken that our political system is, in my opinion, pretty damn broken. Maybe you are reading this at a time when the daily news is about how our alien overlords have really skewed the border situation so Earthers can’t get decent jobs. I don’t know. …

Lodro Rinzler

Lodro Rinzler is author of “The Buddha Walks into a Bar,” “Love Hurts” and a handful of other fun books on meditation | Co-Founder of MNDFL.

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