Nikki Mirghafori

Nikki Mirghafori, PhD, started contemplative practices and yoga in the early 1990’s as a teen, and has practiced primarily in the Theravada tradition since 2003. She studied jhanas and the detailed analytical method of vipassana with the renowned Burmese meditation master Venerable Pa Auk Sayadaw, who empowered and instructed her to teach in 2008. Additionally, she is a Stanford-trained compassion cultivation instructor, a UCLA-trained mindfulness facilitator, and also empowered by Spirit Rock/IMS as a Dharma Teacher. She is of Persian heritage, and in a parallel universe, has been an artificial intelligence scientist and academic.

Nikki serves on the Teachers Council, as well as the Board of Directors at Spirit Rock and the Insight Meditation Center in Redwood City, CA. She offers classes, daylongs, retreats, and individual dharma guidance to practitioners nationally.

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Featured Audio Talk
August 31, 2020 - The Five Daily Reflections

In the Hindu epic Mahabhārata, the wise person Yudhiṣṭhira is asked, “What is the most amazing thing in all of life?” And he says “that a human, seeing others die all around them, never thinks they will die.” We know in our head that we’re going to die, but we don’t live as if we’re going to die. We live as if we’re going to live forever. We squander our time. Mindfulness of death enables us to live more fully—knowing that this life is not permanent, and when the time to die comes, to have more freedom, both in our own death and supporting our loved ones.

  • I am of the nature to age, I have not gone beyond aging.
  • I am of the nature to sicken, I have not gone beyond sickness.
  • I am of the nature to die, I have not gone beyond dying.
  • All that is mine, beloved and pleasing, will become otherwise, will be separated from me.
  • I am the owner of my actions, heir to my actions, born of my actions, related to my actions, abide supported by my actions. Whatever action I do, for good or for ill, of that I will be the heir.
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