What is tangerine meditation?  

For those new to meditation, tangerine meditation is a great way to show that the practice isn’t only about sitting and focusing on breathing, but can be incorporated into all aspects of life. In fact, many common habits and activities, such as walking or lying down – and even eating a tangerine – can be done in a mindful way that incorporates the benefits of meditation. 

Tangerine meditation is also a helpful way to explain mindfulness to children. Thich Nhat Hanh wrote about this extensively in his book Old Path White Clouds; read an excerpt on the Plum Village website.

“A person who practices mindfulness can see things in the tangerine that others are unable to see. An aware person can see the tangerine tree, the tangerine blossom in the spring, the sunlight and rain that nourished the tangerine. Looking deeply, one can see ten thousand things that have made the tangerine possible. Looking at a tangerine, a person who practices awareness can see all the wonders of the universe and how all things interact with one another.”

However, this type of meditation does require a prop, whether it’s a tangerine, an orange, an apple – or any fresh fruit. Once you have one, find a quiet place to listen to a guided contemplation or meditation on the Plum Village App – it’s as simple as that!. 

The length of this practice can be as long or as short as you wish, depending on factors like your internal rhythm, fruit of choice, or length of work break. The monastics’ guidance is a starting point, but tangerine meditation can then be practiced anywhere, anytime, with or without access to the app. 

Here’s a selection of some of the most popular tangerine meditations and other relevant material on the app:

1. The most recent addition is an immersive teaching in which Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay) explains tangerine meditation. Thay’s words were excerpted from a Dharma talk from 1998 and used by Miguel Sánchez as the basis of a short film.

🎥 Watch on the Plum Village App

2. Brother Phap Linh will also help you to enjoy eating a tangerine in mindfulness. This short guided meditation is part of a set of contemplations and meditations created to help us cultivate more awareness while eating. You can find this series on the app and the YouTube channel. 

🎧 Listen on the Plum Village App

3. During an event for Stanford University, Sister True Dedication and Brother Phap Huu guided a live tangerine meditation, including useful insights on how to practice it. This longer video covers a lot of unknowns, so is especially useful for beginners.

🎥 Watch on the Plum Village App

📍 To discover even more material on this topic, look up ‘tangerine meditation’ in the app’s search engine


☁️ As has been the case with Buddhist teachings for millennia, there is no charge for the Plum Village App and its digital content. However, if your means allow, please consider offering a donation to support our small team’s continued work on the app.

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