The Rubin is transforming. Read important updates from our Executive Director.

Theme: Generosity

The holiday season is here! Flickering butter lamp offerings evoke Hanukkah menorah lights and remind us of the season of giving. In our latest mindfulness meditation podcast, Tracy Cochran shares a few holiday fables that teach powerful lessons about mindfulness.

About the Mindfulness Meditation Podcast

The Rubin Museum of Art presents a weekly meditation session led by a prominent meditation teacher from the New York area, with each session focusing on a specific work of art. This podcast is recorded in front of a live audience, and includes an opening talk, a 20-minute sitting session, and a closing discussion. The guided meditation begins at 17:30.

If you would like to attend Mindfulness Meditation sessions in person or learn more, please visit our website at

This program is supported in part by the Hemera Foundation with thanks to our presenting partners Sharon Salzberg, the Interdependence Project, and Parabola Magazine.

Related Artwork

Butter Lamp; 18th century; Metal, silver; Rubin Museum of Art; Gift of Ralph Redford; C2008.27 (HAR 57010)
Butter Lamp; 18th century; Metal, silver; Rubin Museum of Art; Gift of Ralph Redford; C2008.27 (HAR 57010)

One of the ubiquitous offerings in Himalayan cultures, butter lamps can be found in virtually at any temple or holy site in the region. Himalayan people use butter lamps as offerings of light to appease the sense of sight for the deities that appear on the altar. The light itself serves as a metaphor for illuminating awareness that dispels the darkness of ignorance, just like meditation practice that and the Buddha’s teachings.

About the Speaker

Tracy Cochran is editorial director of Parabola, a quarterly magazine that for forty years has drawn on the world’s cultural and wisdom traditions to explore the questions that all humans share. She has been a student of meditation and spiritual practices for decades and teaches mindfulness meditation and mindful writing at New York Insight Meditation Center and throughout the greater New York area. In addition to Parabola, her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Psychology Today, O Magazine, New York Magazine, the Boston Review, and many other publications and anthologies. For more information please visit