About the Book: Meditation has long been the domain of the child-free seeker. Time and again, fellow parents lament about their lack of time to do even basic self-care, never mind meditation. This sense of lack feeds into the concept that a sincere, regular meditation practice and parenthood cannot co-exist.
Meditation Practice for Moms and Dads: 108 Tips for Parents and Caregivers is not another “how to meditate” book. It's for the parent/caregiver who has resources for "how-to" or has already experienced the benefits of meditation, but cannot seem to maintain a regular practice due to the chronic demands of care giving and householding. This book is the cheerleader for meditating parents and caregivers. It boldly claims that a thriving meditation practice is not only possible, but an absolute must for the parent/householder. It isn't an empty claim. The author, Shana Smith, is doing it. Her journey is profound, funny, and fabulous.
This book was born over two years of careful observation and recording about her own experiences merging the worlds of meditation and family life into a synergistic practice that is, in actuality, for all. The entertaining combination of tips, real-parent stories, and poetry demonstrates that parents can squelch the mindset of "I can't" to "I will," to celebrate the opportunity to embrace parenthood and worldly life itself as a vital spiritual practice rather than an impediment to one.
About the Author:
Shana Smith is a mom, musician, marine biologist, teacher, and writer. She is an avid and longtime practitioner of Zen and meditation, a decades-long yogi, and a much sought-after kirtan wallah, or devotional chanting leader. For the past twenty years, she has been known to many across the state of Florida and the U.S. as the nationally award-winning (Parent's Choice, iParenting, NAPPA, Just Plain Folks) children’s musical persona “Shana Banana.” Shana and her family (husband Dan, daughter Grace Ohana, and son Benny Albert) have settled down in Gainesville, Florida to run their meditation- and yoga-based Gainesville Retreat Center (www.GainesvilleRetreatCenter.com), which attracts many renowned teachers and practitioners and offers weekly meditation nights.
In addition to book and music appearances, homeschooling her two kids, and running the retreat center with her family, Shana is currently working on a series of children's books based on her original musical stories currently available on Shana Banana CD's. She is also writing a tween mystery series developed over the past two years with her kids, and recording a CD of devotional chants from various traditions, and an adult environmental fiction novel based in Cedar Key, Florida. In her free time, she walks in the forest, takes a lot of photos, gardens, cooks, writes poetry, and plays. A lot.
"This book is a must-have not only for parents and caregivers seeking a more mindful and meaningful foundation for their busy lives, but for those who know in their hearts that a meditation practice is very important in today's world." -Venerable Dhammajiva
“Fantastic! Shana offers a wealth of creative ideas, attitude adjustments, liberating insights and all the energy to try [them] on… This book isn’t about getting away from the hectic, hubbub of parental and domestic responsibilities, but rather how to stay in (inside, in-touch, informed, interested, insightful) and view it all as spiritual practicum!” - Steve Armstrong, Founding Director/Guiding Teacher of Vipassana Metta Foundation
“‘Meditation Practice for Moms and Dads’ offers a voice to the heart of Zen practice from the heart of a mother. Read along; laugh along; cry along; sing along, dance along.” -Ken Kessel, Ji Do Poep Sa Nim, Zen Teacher in the Kwan Um School of Zen
“Meditation for Moms and Dads is a delightful book to read, overflowing with profound wisdom and timely tips for those of us seeking a source of true peace, joy and compassion in the midst of our hectic lives. Shana Smith, a longtime Zen practitioner, mom and meditator, musician and marine biologist, and much more, offers vivid anecdotes and eye-opening examples of living Zen in the context of her own family life, replete with penetrating insights and a touch of humor to boot… A truly masterful work worth reading again and again.” -Ruben L.F. Habito, Guiding Teacher at Maria Kannon Zen Center; Author of Healing Breath: Zen for Christians and Buddhists in a Wounded World.
“Shana Smith, a longtime Zen practitioner, mom and meditator, musician and marine biologist, and much more, offers vivid anecdotes and eye-opening examples of living Zen in the context of her own family life, replete with penetrating insights and a touch of humor to boot… A truly masterful work worth reading again and again.” -Ruben L.F. Habito, Guiding Teacher at Maria Kannon Zen Center; Author of Healing Breath: Zen for Christians and Buddhists in a Wounded World.
“I had been an engaged Zen practitioner for ten years when our sons Florian and Benjamin were born fifteen months apart, throwing my quiet morning meditation practice and regular seven day retreat attendance completely overboard. At that time, I would have much profited from the wisdom, compassion, humor and sheer delight of Shana’s book that I heartily recommend to new and not so new parents alike!”-Maria Reis Habito, Sanbo Zen Teacher and International Program Director, Museum of World Religions
Press Releases and News:
Primary Point, Vol.32, No. 3, Winter 2016
Article on page 22
Reader's Favorite: Book Review 4/25/2016
Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite
Meditation for Moms and Dads: 108 Tips for Mindful Parents and Caregivers by Shana Smith is a useful guide that gives 108 tips to parents and caregivers about how useful meditation is for everyone, and shows how one can see attachment giving way to freedom, fear dissolving into freedom, and the shifts it can bring. Meditation is essential for cultivating mindfulness and comes in many forms. The book reiterates the fact that practicing meditation daily will bring infinite love and helps everyone connect with the present moment, creating peace and joy in their families. Meditation is a way of disciplining the posture, breathing, and stilling the mind. This book has a lot of answers to questions like What is meditation?, What is a meditation practice?, and How to start meditation?
I found the book extremely useful to all those who want to know more about meditation and want to start practicing meditation. The book gives tips and techniques about the wonderful combination of breathing, rhythm, sensation, and focus. It's very challenging for everyone to practice meditation regularly in this ever-changing, busy world, but the author has ideas for that too. The black and white sketches give the book a light tone and help kids connect well with the contents. The real parent stories, funny sketches, and tips makes the concept palpable and tangible to all readers. The book is a good guide and inspiration for all those who want to practice meditation in the context of family life.
Holistic Parenting Magazine Blog 5/19/2016
If you’re new to mindfulness and meditation, this short and sweet book is a great place to start! Smith understands and works with–rather than resisting–the reality of life with children, a parent’s real need to fill their cup so they can continue to serve the family as “Householder” and all the challenges–often perceived as obstacles–that modern families face. Her grace and humor throughout the book entice the reader to start somewhere, and now. I appreciated each and every one of the 108 tips, and loved that the book ends with poems. If you’re looking for guidance to incorporate meditation into a hectic family life, look no further!