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About the Meditation

This week’s meditation session is led by Lavina Shamdasani and the theme is Appreciation.

The guided meditation begins at 12:23.

For centuries Himalayan practitioners have used meditation to quiet the mind, open the heart, calm the nervous system, and increase focus. Now Western scientists, business leaders, and the secular world have embraced meditation as a vital tool for brain health.

Whether you’re a beginner, a dabbler, or a skilled meditator seeking the company of others, join expert teachers in a 45-minute weekly program designed to fit into your lunch break. Each session is inspired by a different work of art from the Rubin Museum’s collection and includes an opening talk, a 20-minute meditation session, and a closing discussion.



Buddha Ratnasambhava with Wealth Deities; Tibet; early to mid-14th century; mineral pigments on cloth; Rubin Museum of Art; C2005.16.39 (HAR 65462)

Ratnasambhava is one of the Buddhas of the Five Families. Each buddha is associated with a cardinal direction.

Ratnasambhava presides over the southern direction. He is associated with overcoming pride and developing equanimity. His identifying characteristics include his yellow color and his horse vehicle, which is shown peeking out from either side of his lotus throne. His right hand is in the mudra of supreme generosity.

This thangka, dating from the early to mid-14th century is an example of an early Tibetan painting. Works from this time period are hierarchical in nature. Each figure is portrayed in a size that reflects its relative importance. Since Ratnasambhava is the subject of this painting, he is the most prominently featured.

The word ratna means “jewel” and Ratnasambhava is affiliated with the jewel family. Ratnasambhava is richly adorned. Five forms of the wealth deity Jambhala are shown along the bottom of the painting.

Discover more about Ratnasambhava and the Buddhas of the Five Families in the Mandala Lab.


About the Speaker

Lavina Shamdasani

Lavina Shamdasani is a certified compassion teacher through the Compassion Institute and Stanford University. She has taught programs focused on mindfulness, compassion, joy, and gratitude and led book club discussions and meditations for over five years.

Lavina studied positive psychology coaching at the Wholebeing Institute and helps clients transform their lives and meet their personal and professional goals.


This program is presented in partnership with Sharon Salzberg and teachers from the New York Insight Meditation Center, the Interdependence Project, and Parabola Magazine and supported by the Frederick P. Lenz Foundation for American Buddhism.