About This Project

Animal Meditations is a series of guided meditations designed to take listeners inside the experience of wild animals in their habitat. As Thomas Nagel famously postulated in his essay, What is it like to be a bat?, the subjective experience of these animals is impossible for us to truly comprehend. It is particularly difficult when their physical, sensory, or mental capacities differ greatly from our own - such as with bats, insects, or whales. But the sincere imaginative exercise of placing our cognition within their experience can be illuminating. It is not only calming, but creates a deeper appreciation for other beings and reduces the primacy of our own concerns. This is how Vice describes our work:

 
Animal Meditations, a collection of guided meditations both soothing and profoundly educational, enables a listener to do as a child might: momentarily embody an animal, taking on its particular form and exploring its natural environment. Each meditation is no longer than eight minutes, and as you sync your breath to the imagined creature’s, you’ll fly across the sea as a Laysan albatross or experience the peculiar state of being suspended in water as an octopus. ... What’s special about Animal Meditations, though, is not simply their ability to help you embody the animal, but the empathy evoked by imagining the self as anything else at all. Briefly dreaming yourself into the body of another might cultivate the sensitivity necessary to better understand each other, the planet, and all it encompasses in its movement around the sun.
— Monica Uszerowicz | Vice
 

Animal Meditations was inspired by J.A. Baker's The Peregrine, Jeff Bridges' Sleeping Tapes, and the pangolin. The project has grown slowly through the support and contributions of the team above, our 265 Kickstarter backers, and a growing community of contributors and fans. We would love for you to join our community and share your stories with us. If you'd like to contribute your own track, offer feedback or just say hello, we'd love to hear from you.

 

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CONTRIBUTORS TO DATE

Jon Leland (Great Egret, Sockeye Salmon, Mustang)

Colin Everest (Laysan Albatross, voice of Diamondback Rattlesnake, The Meerkats!) is an audio engineer whose work can be found at Netcong Records.

Jake Hudson (Three-Toed Sloth, Bear-Nosed Wombat, Desert Cottontail)

David Rood-Ojalvo (Roosevelt Elk, Arctic Fox)

Sam Fleischner (Octopus) is a director whose work can be found at HowFollowsWhat.

Peter Hoy (Cottontail Rabbit, writer of Diamondback Rattlesnake)

Lauren Stossel (Fire Salamander, Timberwolf)

Daniella Gesundheit (Humpback Whale) is a singer who performs as Snowblink.

Brent Katz (African Elephant) is a writer and songwriter who has collaborated with Passion Pit, Mark Ronson and others, and was a founding member of Harlem Shakes.

Jessica Karr (Adelie Penguin)

Kevin Sattin (Wood Frog)

Daniel Moffat (Sound design for Roman Snail)