Singing Meditation

Singing Meditation

Like chanting, when we sing, it’s very difficult to think of anything else. It helps focus the mind on very wholesome lyrics in the present moment which nourishes us. The lyrics are chosen wisely as tools to help us to wake up more and if we are lucky, the songs get stuck in our heads so that we can remind ourselves to practice more often. Many of these songs are written and sung by Plum Village practitioners, some are older and adopted from other spiritual traditions. In either case, we use these songs as a fun way to practice mindfulness!

Here are a collection of some of the songs we sing at Deer Park and the Wake Up San Diego Sangha (there are also many more not listed here). For some of the songs listed below, there are hyperlinks in the title of the song to youtube or sound cloud so that you can hear what they sound like. In addition, you can check out the Deer Park Sound Cloud   too. Enjoy!

1. Breathing In, Breathing Out

Breathing in, breathing out (2x)
I am blooming as a flower,
I am fresh as the dew,
I am solid as a mountain,
I am firm as the Earth.
I am free.
Breathing in, breathing out (2x)
I am water, reflecting
what is real, what is true.
And I feel there is space
deep inside of me.
I am free, I am free, I am free.

2. The Island Within (another good version w/ French too!)

Breathing in,
I go back to the island within myself.
There are beautiful trees
within the island,
there are clear streams
of water, there are birds,
sunshine and fresh air.
Breathing out,
I feel safe.
I enjoy going back to my island.

3. Dear Friends

Dear friends, dear friends,
Let me tell you how I feel;
You have given me such treasures,
I love you so.

4. I Have Arrived, I Am Home

I have arrived, I am home, in the here and in the now (2x)
I am solid, I am free (2x)
In the ultimate, I dwell (2x)

5. In Out

In, out
Deep, slow
Calm, ease
Smile, release,
Present moment, wonderful moment.

6. Standing Like A Tree

Standing like a tree
with my roots down deep,
and my branches wide and open.
Come down the rain,
Come down the sun,
Return to the Earth, return to the One…
You are so tall, your leaves are so green
How could we live without you?…
Trees… give us shade and…
Trees… give us air to breathe…
We are one family, we are all related…

7. Arrived

Arrived, arrived,
at home, I am at home.
Dwelling in the here
and dwelling in the now.
Solid as a mountain,
free as a white cloud.
The door to no-birth and no-death
is open,
free and unshakable.

8. Mindfulness Poem For Walking Meditation

The mind can go
in a thousand directions,
but on this lovely path,
I walk in peace.
With each step, a gentle wind blows.
With each step, a flower blooms.

9. Please Call Me By My True Names

My joy’s like spring, so warm.
It makes flowers bloom all over the Earth.
My pain’s like a river of tears,
so vast it fills the four oceans.
Please call me by my true names.
So I can hear all my cries and laughter at once.
So I can see that my joy and pain are one.
Please call me by my true names,
so I can wake up
and the door of my heart
could be left open.

10. Peacefully Free

I am so free
because I can be me.
look at the clouds at play,
passing over everyday.
Inside the sky so blue,
immense, spacious and true.
I’ll be tall like the sky,
wide enough to embrace what’s inside,
just like the clouds passing by,
flying high in the grand open sky.
Everything around me will be
loved, embraced, and peacefully free.
everything inside me will be
loved, embraced, and peacefully free.

11. I Am A Cloud (another good version)

I am a cloud, I am the blue sky,
I am a bird spreading out its wings.
I am a flower, I am the sunshine,
I am the Earth receiving a seed.
And I am free when my heart is open. <-
Yes I am free when my mind is clear.
Oh dear brothers, oh dear sisters,
Lets walk to together mindfully.
Lets walk to together joyfully (2nd time through).

12. We’re All Moving On A Journey To Nowhere

We’re all moving, on a journey to nowhere.
Taking it easy, taking it slow.
No more worries, no need to hurry.
Nothing to carry, let it all go…

13. No Discrimination

The sun, it shines on everyone. (2x)
No discrimination, no discrimination
The rain, it falls on everyone, (2x)
No discrimination, no discrimination
My heart belongs to everyone, (2x)
No discrimination, no discrimination

14. And When I Rise

And when I rise,
let me rise like a bird, joyfully.
And when I fall,
let me fall like a leaf, gracefully, without regrets.
(And when I sit,
let me sit like a mountain, solidly.
And when I lay,
let me lay like a lake, calm and still, reflecting all.)
(And when I work,
let me work like a bee, lazily.
And when I play,
let me play like the rays of the sun, rejoicingly.)

15. No Coming, No Going

No coming, no going
No after, no before
I hold you close to me.
I release you to be so free
Because I am in you, and you are in me (2x)

16. Happiness

Happiness is here and now.
I have dropped my worries.
Nowhere to go, nothing to do,
no longer in a hurry.
Happiness is here and now.
I have dropped my worries.
Somewhere to go, something to do,
but I don’t need to hurry.

17. Being an Island

Being an island unto myself,
As an island unto myself.
Buddha is my mindfulness,
Shining near shining far.
Dharma is my breathing,
Guarding body and mind.
I am free.
Being an island unto myself,
As an island unto myself.
Sangha is my five skandhas,
Working in harmony.
Taking refuge in myself,
Coming back to myself.
I am free, I am free, I am free.

18. Here is the Pure Land

Here is the pure land, the pure land is here,
I smile in mindfulness and dwell in the present moment,
The Buddha is seen in an Autumn leaf,
The Dharma is a floating cloud,
The Sangha body is everywhere,
My true home is right here.
Breathing in, flowers are blooming,
Breathing out, I am aware that,
Bamboo is swaying, my mind is clear,
And I enjoy every moment.

19. The River is Flowing (the first half of the song)

The river is flowing, flowing and growing,
The river is flowing, back to the sea.
Mother Earth carry me, your child I will always be,
Mother Earth carry me, back to the sea.

The Moon she is waiting, waxing and waning,
The Moon she is waiting for us to be free.
Sister Moon watch over me, your child I will always be,
Sister Moon watch over me, until we are free.

20. May the Road

May the road rise with you
May the wind be always at your back
May the sun shine warm upon your face
May the rain fall soft upon your fields
And until we meet again
May love hold you
In the hollow of her hand.

21. We are All the Leaves of one Tree

We are all the leaves of one tree (x2)
The time has come for all to live as one,
We are all the leaves of one tree.

We are all the waves of one sea (x2)
The time has come for all to live as one,
We are all the waves of one sea.

We are all the stars of one sky (x2)
The time has come for all to live as one,
We are all the stars of one sky.

We are all the leaves of one tree,
We are all the waves of one sea,
The time has come for all to live as one,
We are all the stars of one sky.

22. I like the Roses

I like the roses, I like the daffodils,
I like the mountains, I like the rolling hills,
I like the twinkling stars, when the sun goes down,
Shoo ba dee doo ba dee doo…

23. I Love Nature

I love nature, nature is cool
The forest is my classroom
The Earth is my school
Trees are my teachers
Animals are my friends
And on this school all life depends

24. In Gratitude

Chorus
In gratitude, you have watered seeds
Of love in me, in gratitude.
In gratitude, I will water seeds
Of love in someone too.

I know you’re there for me, and I am so happy.
Chorus
And if you suffer some, please call and I will come.
Chorus

25. Breathe and You Know

Breathe and you know you are alive,
Breathe and you know that all is helping you.
Breathe and you know that you are the world,
Breathe and you know that the flower is breathing too.
Breathe for yourself and you breathe for the world,
Breathe in compassion and breathe out joy.
Breathe and be one with the air that you breathe,
Breathe and be one with the river that flows.
Breathe and be one with the earth that you tread,
Breathe and be one with the fire that glows.
Breathe and you break the thought of birth and death,
Breathe and you see impermanence is life.
Breathe for your joy to be steady and calm,
Breathe for your sorrow to flow away.
Breathe to renew every cell in your blood,
Breathe to renew the depth of consciousness.
Breathe and you dwell in the here and now,
Breathe and all you touch is new and real.

26. The Mind is a Clear Blue Sky

The mind is a clear blue sky (x2)
Clouds come, clouds go
But the mind is a clear blue sky.
[feelings, thoughts, …]

27. Now I walk in beauty

Now I walk in beauty,
beauty is before me,
beauty is behind me,
above and below me.

28. The Two Promises

I vow to develop understanding,
in order to live peacefully with people,
Animals, plants and minerals (x2)
Mmmm ahh, Mmm ahh, Mmm ahh

I vow to develop my compassion,
in order to protect the lives of people,
Animals, plants and minerals (x2)
Mmmm ahh, Mmm ahh, Mmm ahh

29. Remembering

I am remembering, who I am (x2)
I am remembering (x2)

30. Take Your Time

Take your time breathing in, breathing out,
Look deeply as you say, “This is me”.
You and your breath, you and the air
As hummingbird and flower have always been together.

Take gentle steps, feel the ground, curl your toes,
Is there a line between you and this path?
You and your step, you and the Earth
As butterfly and blossom have never been apart.

31. Mother Earth

Mother Earth is a great big ship that we are sailing on, sailing on
Sailing on through space and time, space and time.
Touch the earth, feel your worth,
Awaken to this new rebirth
Know your heart and open up the divine, up the divine.

32. Gatha for planting a Tree

I entrust myself, I entrust myself
To the Earth, to the Earth
And she entrusts herself to me.
[Buddha, Dharma, Sangha, …]

33. Your Joy is my Joy

Whatever illumines your path I will consider as my friend
There are no enemies, no barriers in the heart
There is only wishing you well.
Your joy is my joy, my joy is your joy
Your joy is my joy, for sure.
This is the song in my heart, sing along, sing along
Whit is the song in my heart, sing along.

34. Thank You (Song of Gratitude)

Thank you for letting me fly, high, high above the sky.
Thank you for letting me smile, smile, smile throughout day and night.
Thank you for letting me cry, the tears from deep down inside.
Thank you for for being my light, a guardian angel by my side.
Thank you for opening my eyes, and making the world so bright.

35. I Take Refuge (The Three Jewels); You can find the chant version’s lyric’s here and the video for it here 🙂

I take refuge in the Buddha,
The one who shows me the way in this life.
I take refuge in the Dharma,
The way of understanding and love.
I take refuge in the Sangha,
The community that lives in harmony and awareness.
I take refuge in these three jewels
In perfect oneness of body, speech and mind.

36. This Little Light of Mine

This little light of mine
I’m gonna let is shine (x3).
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.
[All around the world, …]

37. You are a Buddha

You are a Buddha, and you are in my heart,
You are a part of me, you are a Buddha.
You are the Dharma, and you are in my heart,
You are a part of me, you are the Dharma.
You are the Sangha, and you are in my heart,
You are a part of me, you are the Sangha.
You are so beautiful, and you are in my heart,
You are a part of me, you are so beautiful.

38. Breathing In, Breathing Out #2

I’m breathing in
I’m breathing out
My breath goes deep
My breath goes slow
Calming, easing
Smiling to life
Oh life! It’s so wonderful (x2)
In the present moment.

39. All in my Heart (The Children’s Song)

The Sun! The Sun, it shines!
On my face and on my eyes
The su-u-u-un shines in my heart (2x)

The River! The River, it flows!
From the mountains to my toes
The ri-i-i-ver flows in my heart (2x)

Chorus
From the mountains, the flowers,
The children, and the deer (the deer)
We all love each other
There’s a space for everyone in my heart

The Trees! The Trees, they sway!
And give oxygen everyday
The Tree-ee-ees they sway in my heart (2x)

The Birds! The Birds, they fly!
As a school of fish swim by
The Animals are all in my heart (2x)

From the Mountains, the flowers,
The children, and the deer
We all love each other
There’s a space for everyone in my heart
There’s a space for everyone in my heart
There’s a home for everyone in my heart

40. Whenever I Wake Up

Whenever I wake up, I feel happy.
Aware of my eyes, I feel happy.
Aware of my health, I feel happy.
Because I have learned to look deeply.

41. You are my Sangha

You are my sunshine, my only sunshine
You make me happy when skies are gray
You’ll never know dear, how much I love you
Please don’t take my sunshine away.

You are my Sangha, my lovely Sangha
You make me happy when skies are gray
You’ll never know dears, how much I love you
Please don’t take my Sangha away.

42. Edelweiss

Edelweiss, edelweiss, every morning you greet me,
Small and white, clean and bright, you look happy to meet me,
Blossom of snow may you bloom and grow, bloom and grow forever,
Edelweiss, edelweiss, bless my homeland forever. (bless my Sangha forever)

43. Peace is Flowing Like a River

Peace is flowing like a river,
Flowing out through you and me,
Flowing out into the desert,
Setting all the captives free.

Let it flow through me, (x2)
Let the mighty power of Peace
Flow out through me.
Let it flow through me, (x2)
Let the mighty power of Peace
Flow out through me.

[Love, Joy, Faith, Hope is flowing… (etc)]

44. Courage

Courage, sister, you do not walk alone,
We will walk with you and send your spirit home.

[brother, mother, father, children, sangha, …]

45. We are the World

We are the world
We are the children
We are the ones who make a brighter day
So let’s start giving
It’s a choice we’re making
We’re saving our own lives
It’s true we’ll make a better day
Just you and me…

46. I Can See Clearly Now

I can see clearly now the rain has gone.
I can see all obstacles in my way.
Gone’re the dark clouds that had me blind.
It’s gonna be a bright, (bright), bright, bright and sun-shiny day. (x2)

47. Saint Francis Song

If you want to live freely
Take your time go slowly
Do few things but do them well
Heart felt work goes purely
If you want your dreams to be
Take your time, go slowly
Small beginning greater end
Simple work is holy
Say by day, stone by stone,
Build your secret slowly
Day by day, stone by stone,
You’ll have heaven’s glory.

48. Happiness Runs

Happiness runs in a circular motion.
Love is like a little boat upon the sea.
Everybody is a part of everything anyway.
You can have it all if you let yourself be.

49. Smile

[Smile at the trees,
smile at the flowers] (x2)
Smile at the blue sky
Smile at the sun shine

[Smile at your brothers,
smile at your sisters] (x2)
Smile at your parents
Smile at your teachers
Smile at the Sangha all day.

50. Let the Buddha Breathe

Let the Buddha breathe
Let the Buddha walk
I don’t have to breathe
I don’t have to walk
The Buddha is breathing
The Buddha is walking
I enjoy the breathing
I enjoy the walking
Buddha is the breathing
Buddha is the walking
I am the breathing
I am the walking
There is just the breathing
There is just the walking
There is no breather
There is no walker
Peace and joy while breathing
Peace and joy while walking
Peace and joy: the breathing
Peace and joy: the walking
Breathing, walking
Sitting, smiling
Working, playing
Breathing, walking

51. I am home

Awaken spirit of the Earth, I feel you growing me (x2)
I am home, I am home (x2)

Awaken spirit of the rain, I feel you flow in me (x2)
I am home, I am home (x2)

Awaken spirit of the wind, I feel you blow through me (x2)
I am home, I am home (x2)

Awaken spirit of the sun, I feel you burn in me (x2)
I am home, I am home (x2)
(We are home, we are home)

52. All Within Me Peaceful

All before me peaceful…
All behind me peaceful…
Over me peaceful…
Under me peaceful…
All around me peaceful…
All within me peaceful…

53. Healing Chant 

Chorus
May the day be well and the night be well.
May the midday hour bring happiness too.
In every minute and every second,
may the day and night be well.
By the blessing of the Triple Gem,
may all things be protected and safe.
May all beings born in each of the four ways
live in a land of purity.
May all in the Three Realms be born upon Lotus Thrones.
May countless wandering souls
realize the three virtuous positions of the Bodhisattva Path.
May all living beings, with grace and ease,
fulfill the Bodhisattva Stages.

Chorus

The countenance of the World-Honored One, like the full moon
or like the orb of the sun, shines with the light of clarity.
A halo of wisdom spreads in every direction,
enveloping all with love and compassion,
joy and equanimity.

Namo Shakyamunaye Buddhaya
Namo Shakyamunaye Buddhaya
Namo Shakyamunaye Buddhaya

54. Voice of the Mountain

One day I went walking down the mountain
A lonesome brother reached for my hand and said,
“Hear! Can you hear? The voice of the mountain, the voice of the mountain”

One day I went walking down the mountain
A lonesome child reached for my hand and she said,
“Hear! Can you hear? The voice of the mountain, the voice of the mountain.”

Birds are singing and the sky is smiling
Coyotes are laughing and the Earth is sighing
Can you hear? Can you hear? The voice of the mountain, the voice of the mountain? (x2)

55. True Teaching True Learning

As you teach so shall you learn, as you learn so shall you teach (repeated)
Teach only love (repeated)

56. String of Precious Jewels

Open your heart, open your mind
Of the wisdom of this powerful teaching:

Giving brings wealth
A good world comes from kindness
Patience brings beauty
Honor comes from effort
Meditation brings peace
From wisdom comes freedom
And compassion achieves everything we all wish for

57. Metta Meditation Song

May I be filled with lovingkindness
May I be well
May I be peaceful and at ease
May I be happy

[You, we, all ….]

58. Listen

Listen, listen this wonderful sound, brings me back to my true home (x2)
Listen, listen bring me back (x2)

59. There is no way to happiness

There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way (x2)
happinesshappiness is the way (x2)

[Enlightenment, peace… ]

60. There is no way to happiness (alternative version)

There is no way to happiness: happiness is the way
It’s the way

What should I do next and what have I done? Tomorrow, yesterday…
And if I do nothing and if I go nowhere, am I really ok?
I’ve got so much resentment and so many fears, how do I keep them at bay?
And if I feel guilty and when I feel shameful, how can I finally repay?

You tell me there is no way to happiness: happiness is the way
You tell me there is no way to happiness: happiness is the way

But what if I’m single? And what if I’m lonely? And nobody’s coming to play?
And if I’ve got spots, and if I’ve got big feet, and if I’m old and grey
I’m lost in confusion and lacking direction, I’m totally caught in the fray
And I don’t know if I’m coming or going, whether I’ll leave or I’ll stay

You tell me there is no way to happiness: happiness is the way (happy now)
You tell me there is no way to happiness: happiness is the way (happy now)

And I already have more than enough to be happy (happy now, happy now)
Yes, I already have more than enough to be free (happy now)
Yes, I already have more than enough to be happy (happy now, happy now)
And I already have more than enough… (happy now)

But do I have a heart? Do I have a soul? Can you find me with an x-ray?
And if there are needles, pointed sharp needles, how will I find them in all this hay?

There is no way to happiness: happiness is the way
There is no way to happiness: happiness is the way
Happiness is, happiness is, happiness is the way! (happiness)
Happiness is, happiness is, happiness is the way! (happiness)
There is no way to happiness: happiness is the way (oh, oh, oh!)
There is no way to happiness: HAPPINESS IS THE WAY
Come walk with me

61. Yet another version of song 59 & 60 – There is no way to Peace, Peace is the way (same song on youtube)

There is no way to Peace, Peace is the way
There is no way to Freedom, Freedom is the way….

62. Avalokitesvara Chant

63. The Greatest Wisdom of All

What is the greatest (2x)
What is the greatest wisdom of all?
Kindness, kindness
That is the greatest wisdom of all.
Kindness, kindness
That is the greatest wisdom of all.

64. Incense Offering Song

In gratitude, we offer this incense to all beings,
And all bodhisattvas throughout space and time.
May it be as fragrant as the Earth herself is fragrant,
May it be reflecting our careful efforts here.

65. Water the Good Seeds

My mother, my father, they are in me,
and when I look I see myself in them.
The Buddha, the patriarchs, they are in me,
and when I look I see myself in them.

I am a continuation,
of my mother and my father.
I am a continuation,
of all my blood ancestors.

It is my aspiration,
to preserve and continue to nourish,
seeds of goodness,
seeds of skill,
seeds of happiness,
which I have inherited.

It’s also my desire,
to recognize the seeds of fear,
and suffering I have inherited,
and bit by bit, to transform, transform them.

I am a continuation,
of the Buddha and the patriarchs,
I am a continuation,
of all my spiritual teachers.

It is my deep aspiration,
to preserve, develop and nourish,
seeds of understanding,
seeds of love,
seeds of freedom,
which they have transmitted to me.

In my daily life I also want to sow,
seeds of love and compassion in my own consciousness,
and in the heart of other people.

I am determined not to water the seeds of,
craving, aversion and violence in me.

I am determined not to water the seeds of,
craving, aversion and violence in others.

With resolve and with compassion,
I give rise to this aspiration.
May my practice be an offering of the heart,
May my practice be an offering of the heart.

66. Wake Up Song

Chorus
We’re planting seeds for new communities
It’s time to wake up
To be the change in the world we want to see
It’s time to open up
To redefine society
No, don’t give up
We’re planting seeds for new communities
Please wake up
Wake up
Open your eyes
Wake up
Please realize (To a new sunrise)
Wake up
You are skillful and wise (You are beautiful and wise)
Wake up (x2)

She dreamed bigger, she dreamed brighter
She had the energy of wholeness to guide her
And when she stopped to look inside her
She listened to her inner voice and said:
I can clearly see my choice to live in this new way
To take time each day to meditate and to pray
It is a new day, and there is so much more that I need to say
So I’ll be walking on the Earth in this sacred way

Chorus

Walking on the path he could hear his heart whisper
Keep your spirit growing bigger, keep flowing in this river
Believe in yourself, let your heart be your guide
And you can use your suffering to grow your heart wide
There is more wonder in the world than you can see
Now stay true to your path, you don’t have to see how
Be compassionate and kind to your body and your mind
Practice patience; it takes effort and time
One day at a time
One day at a time

Chorus

Let the music take you, let the music wake you
We are coming together from all ten directions
‘Cause we have a deep affection for the truth
We are the youth of all ages, more than just Facebook pages
We are living, breathing realities
We are new loving compassionate inclusive sustainable communities!

Chorus

67. This is It

This is it, this is a happy moment
This is it, this is a wonderful moment
This is it, I have arrived in this moment
And the only moment is now

This is it, only breath breathing
This is it, only life blooming
This is it, only interbeing
And the only way is right now.

This is it, the holy mountain is here
This is it, the sacred temple is here
This is it, the pathless path is here
And the only place is right now.

This is it, this is a happy moment
This is it, this is a wonderful moment
This is it, I have arrived in this moment
And the only moment, the only moment, the only moment is now, now, now.

68. Tree Meditation

Drinking tea I see, that the steam is in me.
It is water in a river, flowing endlessly.
The true nature of it’s being is ecology.
We are all one organism and together we breathe.

Breathe in, it’s the out breath from the trees.
Breathe out, exhale and the trees will breathe.
Realize all rivers go to the sea.
We inter-are with the trees.
When we breathe they breathe.

Breathe in, breathe out. (x2)

And as I strum my guitar and listen to it’s song,
my perception of its being just may be wrong.
But when I remember that I sing for fun,
then I know my guitar contains the sun.
It was growing in the forest, stretching out its leaves.
Helping us to practice as we breathe it breathes.

Breathe in, it’s the out breath from the trees.
Breathe out, exhale and the trees will breathe.
Realize all rivers go to the sea.
We inter-are with the trees.
When we breathe they breathe.

Breathe in, it’s the out breath from the trees,
Breathe out, exhale and the trees will breathe.
Realize all rivers go to the sea.
Open your eyes till the forest is what you see.

And… Breathe in, breathe out.
Breathe in…
Harmony and understanding. (x3)

Well I can stand like a tree with my roots down deep
and my branches wide open so I can see
the blue sky above and feel the love
from the clouds and my friends that I’m singing of.

Well I got little garden growing in my heart,
sowing seeds of poetry, music and art.
I’ve been cultivating peace with my family.
This garden is growing with the whole community.

We breathe in, it’s the out breath from the trees.
Breathe out, exhale and the trees will breathe.
Realize all rivers go to the sea.
We inter-are with the trees.
When we breathe they breathe.

Breathe in, it’s the out breath from the trees,
Breathe out, exhale and the trees will breath.
Realize all rivers go to the sea.
Open your eyes till the forest is what you see.

Breathe in, breathe out. (x2)
This is a new day, right here and now. (x3)
and now…

Drinking tea I see, that the steam is in me.
It is water in a river, flowing endlessly.