PRODUCT REVIEW

Find Inner Peace with the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass

Ragnar Miljeteig
December 3, 2021

Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass review synopsis

What you’ll learn: Learn not just how to meditate, but what mindfulness is, its scientifically proven benefits, and how to make a habit out of practicing mindfulness to reduce your stress and reconnect with the world around you

How long does the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass take? 6 hours and 30 minutes spread over 20 different modules.

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Do I recommend the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass?: Yes, I recommend this MasterClass — both for complete newcomers to meditation and mindfulness and to students who want to improve their daily or weekly practice.

Get the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass

This MasterClass is all about learning meditation and mindfulness to reduce your stress levels and regain a sense of balance and happiness in your life.

In the 21st century, our daily lives zoom past 100 miles an hour. There’s always a new event, notification, job, or other obligation you need to react to and deal with.

Not to mention the global pandemic that’s been raging over the past two years. Understandably, people are more stressed-out than ever before. In January 2021, 84% of Americans reported feeling stressed.

Meditation and mindfulness are two of the best ways to deal with that stress, and regain a sense of calm and control in your life, according to Jon Kabat-Zinn and his MasterClass.

Lifelong Zen and mindfulness student and educator Jon promises to take even the most skeptical beginner and help them create their own mindfulness practice in this course.

But does the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass live up to that promise?

That’s what we’ll find out in this review. We’ll go through the content module by module, review the quality, whether the advice and practices work for most people, and if it’s ultimately worth your time and money.

Disclosure: In the interest of full transparency, Codeless uses affiliate links in our MasterClass reviews to cover our site’s costs.

Our Verdict

This MasterClass is well-structured and thorough, and it’ll help anyone who’s even remotely interested in mindfulness to get started with meditation and get a new perspective on and approach to life.

Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass Become a Pro at Meditation

$15 /month
PROS
  • Learn “personally” from one of the most renowned mindfulness teachers of our age.
  • Jon has a way with words that makes mindfulness feel a lot more accessible and less like something reserved for stoic Zen monks.
  • No woo-woo or mysticism; the lessons are based on science-backed benefits and principles.
  • Thorough course with multiple guided meditations helps you all the way from skeptic to experienced meditator.
  • Good balance of theory and actual meditation practice.
CONS
  • Can be somewhat repetitive if you watch multiple lessons in a row — it’s best consumed over multiple days as you go through your meditation journey.

A few frequently-asked questions (FAQs)

Before we explore the course itself, let’s clear up some of the most frequently asked questions we’ve received about this MasterClass.

Do I need a subscription to access this course?

Yes, you need a MasterClass subscription to access this course. Membership starts at $15/month (paid annually) and unlocks not only this course, but also those taught by well-known names like Dan Brown, Malcolm Gladwell, Alice Waters and Bob Iger to name a few.

Who is Jon Kabat-Zinn?

Jon Kabat-Zinn is the founder of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), and a lifelong student and teacher of mindfulness and meditation.

First introduced to the concept by a Zen missionary in the 60s, he’s devoted the rest of his life to learning and teaching the art of mindfulness.

Is the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass worth it?

Even if you only have a perfunctory interest in meditation or mindfulness, taking Jon Kabat-Zinn’s MasterClass is well worth your money and time.

The course breaks down complex concepts and makes them easily digestible, and foregoes a lot of the woo-woo to help you get practical and start your own meditation practice ASAP.

Does MasterClass have a cancellation policy?

If you aren’t happy with your MasterClass membership for any possible reason, you can contact MasterClass within 30 days of joining for a full refund.

About Jon Kabat-Zinn and his qualifications

Jon Kabat-Zinn is a professor emeritus of medicine and has a Ph.D. in molecular biology from MIT, so you might wonder why he’s not teaching a class about the microscopic world of bacteria.

While a student, he met a Zen missionary who introduced him to meditation and went on to study under such famous Zen masters as Thích Nhất Hạnh and Seungsahn.

By 1979, he was convinced of its efficacy for stress reduction, and founded the Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts Medical School — later renamed the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR).

Since then, he’s devoted his life to teaching mindfulness to help people cope with stress, pain, and other issues to regain their happiness.

The MBSR approach has spread to medical clinics and centers around the globe, helping patients reduce stress and pain, and regain control of their lives.

A quick overview of the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass course

This course doesn’t get bogged down in theoretical or spiritual concepts but focuses on how to actually meditate and become more mindful.

You’ll get expert tips and pointers on how to become less judgemental and focus on the moment, as well as full-length guided meditations with renowned meditation teacher Jon Kabat-Zinn.

In a nutshell, this class covers:

  • What mindfulness is and why you should care
  • The science of mindfulness
  • How to adopt a more mindful attitude in your everyday life
  • Multiple guided meditations with different intentions
  • Different meditation postures and their benefits
  • How to use mindfulness to deal with stress and pain
  • An introduction to mindful yoga
YouTube video

How much does the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass cost?

To take the course, you need a monthly MasterClass subscription that costs $15 per month, billed annually. But with the subscription, you can access every MasterClass, not just this course from Jon Kabat-Zinn.

Landing page of the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass
Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass landing page

This price will get you the Standard plan, which includes all video content and the workbook and online community.

The only limitation is that you can only view the courses on one device at a time.

Pricing page of the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass
Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass Pricing

The Plus Plan, which allows up to two devices at the same time, costs $20 a month when billed annually.

The premium plan, which supports up to 6 simultaneous devices, starts at $23 a month — billed annually.

Start learning with a MasterClass membership now

What is included in the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass?

Runtime: 6 hours and 30 minutes

Course Value: 5/5

Lessons: 20

Supplementary materials: Student workbook and online forum

Supplementary workbook

Jon Kabat-Zinn’s MasterClass also includes a supplementary workbook that covers some of the same topics as the course itself.

The workbook is 26 pages long, and rather than repeating lessons from different modules, it explores mindfulness meditation deeper and also explores stress and how it impacts the body.

Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass Workbook

It also helps you explore which mindfulness app might be right for you, and condenses some of Jon’s main ideas on living a mindful life to help you deal with the turbulence of modern society.

The MasterClass Hub

The Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass course includes an online community, also known as a MasterClass Hub, where you can interact with other students and ask for tips and share your journey into mindfulness.

Online community of the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass
Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass Online Community

For example, you can ask for specific equipment like a mindfulness app or blue light filters. It’s also a great place to find like-minded people to help you make mindfulness a part of your everyday life.

A complete breakdown of the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass curriculum

The Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass curriculum includes 20 different lessons, from introductions to mindfulness and meditation, to multiple guided meditations and specific tips and pointers.

Curriculum:

  1. Meet Your Instructor
  2. A Guide to Mindfulness
  3. Attitudinal Foundations of Mindfulness
  4. A Guide to Meditation
  5. Guided Meditation: Dropping In
  6. Working With Thoughts While Meditating
  7. Meditation Postures
  8. Guided Meditation: Falling Awake
  9. Guided Meditation: Putting Out the Welcome Mat
  10. Guided Meditation: Choiceless Awareness
  11. Mindfulness and Stress
  12. Guided Meditation: The Mountain
  13. Mindfulness, Pain, and Suffering
  14. Guided Meditation: the Body Scan
  15. The Science of Mindfulness
  16. Mindful Hatha Yoga
  17. Reclaiming Our Wholeness
  18. Guided Meditation: Loving-Kindness
  19. Healing the World
  20. Maintaining a Mindfulness Practice

Course summary:

Jon starts the course by covering the fundamental ideas and concepts of mindfulness and meditation.

This introduction gives you the perspective you need to dive in and start the journey of experimentation and discovery that is meditation.

Then, through multiple guided meditations, he helps you take the second step, which is actually trying to meditate.

Guided meditation video in the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass
Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass Guided Meditation Video

Then he offers specific guidance on meditation poses, what to do with all the thoughts that pop up during meditation, and more.

The course then goes on to cover how mindfulness can impact how you handle stress and pain, with specific tips for those who feel overwhelmed or deal with chronic pain.

Science of mindfulness video in the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass
Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass Science of Mindfulness Video

He even spends a lesson going into the newest science of meditation and mindfulness, which highlights its benefits for everyone.

Finally, he shares some basic poses from his approach to “mindful yoga.” It’s a great way to build on your meditation practice once you’ve started on your journey.

Yoga video in the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass
Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass Yoga Video

In the final lessons, he sums up key lessons from the course, and his thoughts on the role mindfulness plays in creating a better world in the future.

What I learned from the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass

As a bit of a skeptic, this course was a real eye-opener on meditation and its benefits. I learned not only how to meditate, but also how to become more mindful of toxic habits that have a bad impact on my mood and relationships on a daily basis.

4 key takeaways from the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass

1. Meditation is more accessible than you think

You don’t need to be initiated by some mysterious Zen missionary and master the cross-legged pose before you can “properly” meditate.

There’s no gatekeeping. As long as you can sit or lie down, and actively do nothing, you can meditate.

2. Awareness alone can be a great tool

Just becoming more aware of your emotional reaction to things like stress or unexpected events can help you temper your response and treat yourself and the people around you with more care.

3. Gain the ability to reset before you spiral out of control

One of the biggest benefits is the ability to stop focusing on a train of thought that’s running out of control, and take a break and reset your mind by focusing on your breath or simply being in your body.

It’s almost like a cheat code to calm down and give yourself the space to find a new perspective.

4. Meditation isn’t about trying to push toward your ideal self

Meditation and mindfulness aren’t about racing towards the ideal of a perfect self. It’s about discovering who you are and being honest with yourself about your thoughts, responses, and body.

You shouldn’t get into this to become a “master” of meditation, which is why Jon calls the course the non-master class. Start meditating to explore your own body and emotional responses.

Memorable quotes from the Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass

“Each and every moment is an opportunity to investigate the nature of your mind. When you bring awareness to a moment, a universe of new possibilities arises.”

Lesson 1: Meet Your Teacher

“To be mindful is to befriend the present moment as it is.”

Lesson 1: Meet Your Teacher

“If you’re breathing, this class could be for you.”

Lesson 1: Meet Your Teacher

“If you were to follow us around for a day, it would be more accurate to call us human doings. But the being part of a being human is incredibly important, and it requires inhabiting that space of being, and that means non-doing, for a bit. It’s not about some special state.”

—  Lesson 2: A Guide to Mindfulness

“The interesting thing with meditation is that you actually bring your mind with you. So you sit down with every intention to be a calm, happy, deeply insightful person, and then this stuff starts to happen almost as if you have your phone in there with you. In your brain.”

—  Lesson 3: Attitudinal Foundations of Mindfulness

“Any way you sit is fine, and not sitting at all, lying down would be fine, or standing on your head.”

—  Lesson 7: Meditation Postures

“Stress is an inevitable part of living, there’s no such thing as getting rid of all your stress. If you got rid of all your stress, you would be dead or in a coma.”

Lesson 11: Mindfulness and Stress

“We move through the entire body that way, not so much to appreciate the anatomy, but to actually reinhabit the body.”

Lesson 14: Guided Meditation: the Body Scan

Jon Kabat-Zinn MasterClass pros and cons

As far as courses on mindfulness and meditation go, this is probably the best I’ve encountered on the internet.

But it’s not without its flaws, so let’s explore some of the top pros and cons.

Pros

  • Learn “personally” from one of the most renowned mindfulness teachers of our age.
  • Jon has a way with words that makes mindfulness feel a lot more accessible and less like something reserved for stoic Zen monks.
  • No woo-woo or mysticism; the lessons are based on science-backed benefits and principles.
  • Thorough course with multiple guided meditations helps you all the way from skeptic to experienced meditator.
  • Good balance of theory and actual meditation practice.

Cons

  • Can be somewhat repetitive if you watch multiple lessons in a row — it’s best consumed over multiple days as you go through your meditation journey.

Do I recommend this MasterClass?

I find myself agreeing with Jon, who offers a blanket recommendation for this course by saying,  “If you breathe, this course might be for you.”

I came to the course with an open yet skeptical mind, and I appreciated how the course is rooted in science and proven benefits, rather than philosophical or religious ideals alone. Meditation is quickly becoming an important part of my daily routine.

The course is well-structured and thorough, and it’ll help anyone who’s even remotely interested in mindfulness to get started with meditation and get a new perspective on and approach to life.

Find a new calm with Jon Kabat-Zinn’s MasterClass