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10 TV Series With Conscious Themes – If You’re Looking For Something Good

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    With a seemingly endless number of streaming platforms there have never been more options when it comes to finding a new series to watch. Thankfully there are quite a few options with some surprisingly conscious themes and messaging.

  • Reflect On:

    What are some of your favorite TV series with a conscious facet to them? How many of these 10 have you seen?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

As the Founding Director of the Tribeca Film Festival, former Head of Content for GAIAMTV (Gaia), and now Founder and CEO of Conscious Good, I’ve always been on the pulse of consciousness elevating entertainment.

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Within each of these positions there has been one constant: the privilege of getting to watch thousands of hours of the best conscious content the world has to offer annually. In hopes of saving you the time of having to put in those same hours, in December of 2019 I put together a list of 10 of the best conscious films from 2019 that I personally believe you need to watch in 2020. I’d now like to present 10 of the best TV Series with conscious themes that my colleagues (Mark Allan Kaplan, Betsy Chasse and John O’Callahan) and I believe you should make the time to watch over the course of this year.

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While some of these titles may seem surprising, I encourage you to both read in full detail the conscious themes I found and, in some cases, to push through the initial episodes to get to what I truly believe to be binge-worthy.

1. Game of Thrones

WHERE TO WATCH IT: HBO

Undoubtedly one of the most infamous and celebrated series of all-time, Game of Thrones is also quite groundbreaking in terms of the valuable conscious lessons it offers its viewers. Including how the series represents the largest scale attempt to capture a specific stage of human development with the intent of taking us not only deep inside it, but ultimately through it.

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While the dark, violent and overtly sexual nature to a great deal of the series may seem counterproductive to some, it can also be seen, at some level, as necessary to connect with the masses and ultimately wake us up. Honestly, I struggled to watch the first four seasons, but thereafter, the storylines and characters slowly begin to ascend. With the series now officially concluded after 8 very successful seasons, it is fully available for us all to view from start to finish through the lens of conscious messaging.

2. Messiah

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Netflix

Freshly released on January 1st, 2020 the new Netflix original series Messiah is an integral informed exploration of the messiah archetype. Starring Mehdi Dehbi (Tyrant, London Has Fallen) and Michelle Monaghan (The Path, True Detective), the entire first season of the show is filled with clear and profound examples of how to capture deep shifts in our consciousness as well as our paradigms of the self, others, and the world.

While the series is still likely in its infancy, it is a complex and layered work that unpacks the interrelationship of religion, consciousness, culture and society. It is also deeply reflective of what is seemingly happening in the world right now by elegantly journeying into and through multiple dimensions of the culture war and civilization-wide paradigm shift we’re facing.

3. The Good Place

WHERE TO WATCH IT: NBC, Hulu, Netflix

Having recently wrapped up airing its fourth successful season, The Good Place, starring Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars, Forgetting Sarah Marshall) and the infamous Ted Danson (Cheers, Becker), is an easy to watch dramatic comedy with deeper messaging than one would anticipate. The show regularly explores the existential questions that many humans face, including but not limited to: why are we the way that we are, is change/growth possible, and can we heal/forgive past trauma? Best of all, it does it in a very accessible, and often hilarious, way through relatable and down to earth characters.

4. Undone

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Amazon

With its eight episode first season coming to a close in September of 2019, the relatively new animated fantasy series Undone starring Rosa Salazar (Alita, Bird Box) and Angelique Cabral (Life in Pieces) is must-see TV. The series explores what many millennials are facing: struggles with life, their family relationships, a desire for a deeper connection to themselves, and their belief that there is something more to life.

With the show officially being renewed for a second season, now is your perfect chance to begin immersing yourself in what should be a long and unique ride.

5. Cheer

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Netflix

I have never liked cheerleading. Like beauty pageants, it seemed like a weird, unnecessary and sexist vestige of a bygone era. So, Cheer, a Netflix documentary that chronicles the 2019 season of Navarro College’s competitive cheer team, is not a show I’d normally add to my queue.

In the end, though, like any good story it’s the characters that make Cheer great television. The backstories of the featured cheerleaders and their coaches are heartbreaking, elevating, illuminating and inspiring. What seemed a pointless exercise to me, cheerleading, becomes a vehicle for self-redemption, reflection and fulfillment. Cheer is almost a metaphor for life itself. Yes, we are all going to die. But don’t you want to make it “on mat” before you (pun intended) graduate?

6. The Kindness Diaries

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Netflix

What do you do when you’ve hit the pinnacle of your career, but realize that financial success isn’t everything? If you are Leon Logothetis, you pack a bag, buy a motorcycle and travel across the world surviving on the kindness of strangers. And you make a TV series out of it, of course.

Everywhere Leon travels, he connects with kind and generous people, renewing both his and our faith as the viewer that, at our core, human beings are inherently good and eager to make a positive contribution. The cherry on top of each episode is that Leon repays people’s kindness in unexpected and inspiring ways.

7. Green Frontier

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Netflix

Green Frontier is a beautifully shot, sexy and supernatural thriller (from Columbia) that celebrates indigenous cultures and spiritual beliefs. Yes, believe it or not, all of these elements are successfully rolled into one series.

From the opening scene of the series we are immersed into a world that we rarely see portrayed authentically in American television. The underlying theme is that we have lost our connection –our interconnection –with nature, and for that we are suffering greatly.

8. Running Wild

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Hulu

For the past decade I’ve been a huge Bear Grylls fan. I admire how he is in love with the natural world and how he honors and respects nature and our planet to the highest degree.

In Running Wild, he shares that love with well-known public figures such as President Barack Obama while he was in office. In every episode, Bear celebrates how we are all interconnected, including every plant, animal and mineral, and always manages to offer at least one surprise that often makes me crack up, be in disbelief, or be filled with gratitude for his offering.

9. Little America

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Apple TV+

Little America is a beautiful collection of true stories of immigrants coming to the United States from all different parts of the globe and walks of life. In each episode, the main character overcomes a challenging situation – most often a lack of belief in themselves – in order to realize their own version of the American dream.

The show has an innate ability to make me laugh and cry in under thirty minutes, all while providing a realization of what I’ve personally taken for granted as being born Caucasian in the United States – the privilege of never knowing life without freedom or liberty or a belief that I can make my dreams come true.

10. The Politician

WHERE TO WATCH IT: Netflix

The first season of the Netflix series The Politician is an acerbic study of emptiness, ambition and the search for validation. In this initial season, the main character, played by Ben Platt (Pitch Perfect), has assembled a trusted team of friends to win his high school student body election for president, presumably the first step on their road to the White House.

The Politician is acidly funny and, at times, quite touching. The show exists in a kind of hyper reality; the stakes are absurdly high, the characters broadly drawn, the plot lines wildly over the top. In this surreal landscape, the characters thrash about and try to “win” and, in the process, hold up a funhouse mirror to our own travails.


If you love conscious cinema as much as I do, but are always struggling to find something to watch, be sure to sign up to receive our Conscious Media Monthly. It’s a FREE mailer that fills you in on what to watch both in theaters and from the comfort of your own home. SIGN UP NOW!

And take your conscious media experience to the next level by joining the Conscious Good Creators Network, the biggest online community of conscious media creators. From weekly meditations to online courses to free workshops and job opportunities, there is something for everyone. LEARN MORE & JOIN FOR FREE NOW

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Consciousness

New Moon In Aries: Taking Bold Action

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

We are having a New Moon in Aries during the later hours of April 11th in the Americas and on the 12th everywhere else in the world. This is initiating a 29.5 day lunar cycle and new wave of energy for the coming month; however, the astrological configurations mentioned throughout this article will be more prominent over the following two weeks. This cycle will include a Full Moon in Scorpio on April 26th/27th.

Aries season began at the Equinox (on March 20th globally this year) as it always does, as per the framework of the Tropical Zodiac. Being the first of twelve signs, and initiator of a transitional season, it begins the Astrological New Year. However with this New Moon actually occurring in Aries as well, it will crank up the energies of this sign even more so in comparison to the previous weeks that were part of a lunar cycle initiated by a New Moon in Pisces.

Aries is the domain of self, independence, and individual needs. As a Cardinal Fire sign ruled by Mars, it is assertive, courageous, direct, pioneering, and leading. It is initiating, quick, bold, energetic, and warrior-like. Negatively, this energy can be inconsiderate, selfish,  hot tempered, combative, restless, impatient, aggressive, and overly competitive. Aries lacks thoroughness due to its quick forward energy.

New Moon Conjunct Mercury & Venus In Aries

This New Moon is close to both Mercury and Venus. This can reflect a period in which our social interactions and engagement with others can be more lively. Both Mercury and Aries have a busy moving type of energy and we may feel more active, physically and/or mentally, as a result.

The conjunction of both of these planets with this New Moon also means it is tied into cycles that each of those planets have with the Sun. Venus recently joined the Sun in the last week of March and it is now travelling ahead of it in zodiacal position.

In recent weeks this has been a time in which we experienced shifts, developments, endings, beginnings, or more clarity around Venus areas of friends, love, social dynamics, values, worth, or financial matters in some cases. This New Moon and the weeks following can continue this process, especially when it comes to beginnings or newer ways of expressing ourselves in these areas.

Mercury is now approaching the Sun as they will make their conjunction on April 18th/19th. At that time we may experience developments, which may be significant, connected to what has transpired during its previous retrograde in February and how things have unfolded since then. From there, these things may develop further with a better perception, or circumstances may indicate lack of sufficiency, not what was anticipated, or that something needs to change.

Planets In Aries Square Pluto & Sextile Mars Trine Jupiter

This New Moon, along with Venus and Mercury, are in a square with Pluto and sextile with Mars and Jupiter. Pluto combined with Aries and Mars energy can reflect a period of intensity. However, it can also play out as issues around power, control, manipulation, jealousy, insubordination, or subversion.  It can also be revealing, psychological, compulsive, transforming, and purging.

The sextile with Mars in Gemini adds to the lively, assertive, instinctual, and energetic expressions of Aries. The Aries’ planets sextile to Jupiter, which is also trine Mars, can be good for applying ourselves in a way that is expansive, optimistic, educational, philosophical, explorative, freedom seeking, or centered around beliefs. New doors may open up and it can even be lucky for some people.

Uranus square Saturn (mentioned here in a previous article) is still in the backdrop as it will be throughout the year. Although it’s not in one of its strong periods, themes of ‘freedom/rebellion/revolution being at odds restrictions/limitations/traditions are still playing out. This may get activated in different ways by this new lunar cycle and the Aries energy that has already been present over the previous weeks following the Astrological New Year.

Making Intentions & Things To Consider

How would you like to grow and expand and what do you need to change to get there? In what areas do you need to be more bold or courageous? What have your relationships shown you in recent weeks? What is important for your individuality? What are your personal needs? What do you stand for and should you be fighting for it? Do you need to be a leader in any aspects of your life? Are there any new things that you want to explore?

These are just some examples of what to consider or focus your intentions on at this time. However, it is good to reflect on anything else that is coming up for you. It is generally best to make any intentions within the first 24 hours following a New Moon. The exact moment it will occur is 2:31am Universal Time on April 12th. You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

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Consciousness

A Symbiosis of Humans & Technology – Changing The Conversation

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

Have you ever noticed that discussions about transhumanism tend to focus on technology more than humanism? The journey to reaching our highest potential as a species is usually focused externally on the technology rather than internally on our conscious evolution. This is probably because people assume that conscious evolution is more about spirituality whereas technology is more having to do with the things humans create. The two paths are interdependent so we need more conversations between experts in each of these fields. It will only be through a recognition of the symbiotic nature between humans, their technology, and the environment that we will avert self-destruction.

trans·hu·man·ism (n.) 1. A belief that humans should strive to transcend the physical limitations of the mind and body by technological means. 2. A movement of people who espouse such a belief.

Standing at a Crossroads: The influence that technology has on society and culture is called, technodeterminism. Most of us carry mini supercomputers in our pockets called smartphones. These devices act as external brains which seamlessly integrate into most aspects of our life. Most of us are completely dependent on them for travel, work, communication, entertainment, and beyond. Take a moment to consider the future implications of augmented reality, artificial intelligence, machine-learning, mass surveillance, automation, genome editing, nanotechnology, and their potential influences on society, culture, and our environment.

When I think about these things, I can’t help but ask:

Why aren’t people like the Dalai Lama, Deepak Chopra, and Dr. Andrew Weil conversing more with people like Ray Kurzweil, Elon Musk, and Steve Mann?

Ancient Futures: It will become increasingly imperative for our most advanced technologies to be informed by the natural ethos of indigenous people blended with the emotional-intelligence of our enlightened spiritual masters. We must remember that the first humans who captured fire to light their cave, stay warm on a cold night, or cook their food were using technology. Anthropologists proudly call us humans “tool-makers” as one of the attributes that make us distinct from most species.

Paradigm Shift: Conscious evolution will require a concerted effort to communicate across silos and disciplines. Cooperation and collaboration towards collective goals will need to take the place of competition for personal gain. What are we hoping to accomplish, and at what cost? We are a risk-taking species and that drives us to exceed all our limitations. Let’s make these be calculated risks because with our technology also comes a great responsibility.

Start Within: Even our most sophisticated technology does not possess the complexities of organic systems. Computers and machines can do many things for us but they will never be able to feel for us. The realm of emotion is central and unique to our human experience yet it is only now starting to be recognized as a valuable form of intelligence.

Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to recognize one’s own and other people’s emotions, to discriminate between different feelings and label them appropriately, and to use emotional information to guide thinking and behavior.” -Andrew Coleman A Dictionary of Psychology

Research in multiple fields of study shows that curiosity, creativity, taking initiative, multi-disciplinary thinking, and empathy are skills that will redefine traditional beliefs about intelligence. The ability to accommodate new information requires a certain level of mental flexibility, humility, and ultimately character. It is through our ability to feel and process our emotions that our higher intelligence flourishes.

SuperHumans: Any sports fan knows that there are individuals who possess superhuman gifts. Think of popular sports stars like Michael Jordan, or any of the various extreme sports heroes who somehow manage the seemingly impossible. We also have the various musical or art prodigies who express the skills of a master before the age of 10. We have seen humans walk on red-hot coals with bare feet, walk a tightrope between skyscrapers, and exhibit mind-boggling feats of mental-focus, and will-power. Did you know that Wim Hof ran a half marathon barefoot on ice and snow, with a time of 2 hours, 16 minutes, and 34 seconds? Humans are capable of amazing things when they channel discipline, practice, creative brilliance, fearlessness and focus. We have barely scratched the surface of what is possible!

Global Meditation: This simple practice of quieting the mind, and bringing presence to one’s breathing has a long list of documented benefits that include enhanced neural connections, deep feelings of connection and well-being, as well as a strengthened immune system. When we compound this focused intention to include tens of thousands of people all over the world, we begin to literally shift planetary magnetic resonance. The science does not lie, we are potent electrical beings with the ability to focus consciousness and create beyond our wildest imaginations.

Everything technology offers is a reflection of the technology that we, as humans are. Learning to laugh at ourselves a little while delving into our emotions and to make room for possibilities beyond our currently held beliefs is essential for this journey. In order for us to create technology that is aligned with all of life and our planet, we must first become aligned with ourselves and each other. Global meditation is where we practice together!

We can no longer claim that a technology is advanced if it is destroying our skies and rivers or perpetuating harmful practices like war and domination. These are examples of misguided technologies. Our DNA has been informed by countless generations of evolution. It is time that we focus our consciousness towards the natural wisdom kept by indigenous people, while embracing the presence of enlightened spiritual masters. This will allow us to infuse our science and highest technological advancements with ecological and emotional intelligence for the benefit of all life.

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Consciousness

A Proven Technique To Neutralize Draining Emotional Reactions

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CE Staff Writer 9 minute read

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    We'll explore a simple scientifically proven technique to help neutralize emotional reactions that often drain our energy and reduce our ability to think clearly and make effective decisions.

  • Reflect On:

    How often do you check in to how you're are feeling? Do you feel you are able to self regulate your emotions easily?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

Do you notice that you sometimes feel tired or fatigued but are not sure why? Maybe you can have a restful sleep and still wake up having a sense that your energy is not quite there? Maybe you notice yourself being reactive, having a short fuse and feeling unclear about what decisions to make? Maybe you say things to friends, family or people online that you later regret or didn’t truly mean. Much of this can have a lot to do with how we’re feeling emotionally on a regular basis. Emotions that are happening just a touch outside our conscious awareness.

Let’s just do a very quick check in to see what I mean. If you stop a take a moment right now to ask “how am I feeling?” What do you notice? Are you feeling good? Energized? Do you have a background tension? Are you a bit stressed? Annoyed? Are you relaxed and calm? Are you perhaps relaxed yet feeling blah? When we do these check ins we bring awareness to how we might be feeling. This is something we typically don’t do that often and thus are simply not consciously aware of how we feel. If we were a bit more consciously aware of how we felt, we’d have a greater understanding of what we could do to feel better as we know where we’re at.

Energy Loss

This is important because one of the greatest unrecognized sources of prolonged stress, fatigue and physical wear and tear on our bodies comes from living our day to day lives in a state where we consciously or subconsciously experience what we might call ‘draining emotions.’ These are emotions like worry, fear, anger, resentment, or sadness etc.

For each of us, we’re likely going to experience these emotions at some point in life, and this is normal. Typically when we experience these emotions, we’re getting an insight into ourselves. Since what triggers these emotions can often be subjective, we can learn something about our current self by paying attention to these emotions. For example, someone might cut us off while we’re driving on the freeway. On one hand, one person might react aggressively and become very angry, while another might simply see it as a mistake on the part of the other driver and move on with their day.

Why some of us react and others don’t typically comes down the the story we’re telling ourselves about why that person cut you off. Perhaps they take it personally, perhaps they see it as an attack in some way – who knows? You. Only you know, and you can get closer to knowing what that is so you don’t harbour that draining emotion for the rest of the day, and even remove the trigger to begin with so you don’t necessarily have to go down that angry road every time something small like this happens.

I want to be clear here, we’re not looking to avoid emotions or never experience them, we’re looking to gain awareness around why they come, and ultimately have the choice over what gets us bothered and what might be better to simply let go. There is a difference between momentarily feeling an emotion like this, and letting it become a ‘background state’ of being that slowly begins to shape our attitude towards unhealthy and draining tendencies.

We can likely go on all day about where we should ‘honor’ some emotions in some situations or stand up for ourselves in others – I’ll let you decide that within yourself for each situation, but what the focus here in this piece is to simply look at how we can neutralize an emotional experience so we can stop it from draining all our energy and gain greater clarity on why it might be happening.

The exercise below is geared towards improving our self awareness around situations and how we feel, so we can learn to self-regulate emotions at anytime, as well as turn off triggers that might not really be the greatest to have to begin with.

Remember, we’re going to stick with a situation where we are cut off in traffic, but you can use these steps for anything. Maybe you realize you are fearful about a situation. Maybe you notice ongoing worry about something that’s happening or may happen – whatever it may be, the steps can be applied.

A Quick 3 Minute Exercise

We’ll go through the steps, this might seem long at first but it’s actually very short once you get the hang of it. This method is based on decades of scientific researching involving the heart and the benefits of creating coherence through good heart rate variability. You can learn more about that here under the section “Coherence & Optimal Function.”

1. The first step is becoming aware of the fact you’re having the emotional experience. What we’re doing here is by reading this we’re setting up a bit of an increased self awareness in our minds that can help us remember to check in when we next have an emotional reaction to something. Perhaps the car cuts us off while driving, and we react, but then shortly after we remember that we want to have a closer look at that emotional reaction and perhaps choose a different response instead of going down an energy draining rabbit hole. So the first thing we want to do is become aware that the experience is happening.

2. The next step is accepting the experience that’s happening. What this means is, if the person in front of us cuts us off while driving and we get angry and realize we’re angry, bring to your awareness that this is OK. We’re not looking to create a judgement about what happened or what we’re experiencing, instead we simply want to see it for what it is, an experience that happened and we’re now aware of and sitting as an observer of it. What this does is it empowers us to be able to look a little more closely at what we’re feeling and why. After we become aware, take note of the emotion you’re experiencing and name it. Is it anger? Is it worry? Is it fear?

As a small kicker to this, just imagine that the intention here is to turn down the intensity of the emotion so we can go in a take a look at what’s going on in the same way that a firefighter will spray water onto a burning house to stop the fire and cool it enough to go in and assess what the source of that fire was.

3. Next we’re going to take a moment and place our hand or a couple fingers over the areas of our chest, around where your heart is, and use the placement of your hand as something to focus on. With your eyes open, take some comfortable yet slightly deeper breaths. Feel your breath moving in and out of the area of your heart (where you hand is). To do this, don’t worry too much about how perfect the breathing is or whether it’s exactly going in and our of your heart area, just sit with a gentle focus that your breath is moving in and out of the area of your heart. Our goal here is to bring awareness to the physical heart and begin to influence its rhythms ever so slightly. Breath into your heart for about 30 seconds.

4. Next we want to continue our heart focused breathing while also imagining the feeling of calm or ease enter into our bodies. Spend the next 2 minutes or so breathing in the feeling of calm or ease into your heart with comfortable breaths. Notice the calm and ease come over your mind and body. What this stage does is it shows us that we have the ability to produce our own emotional regulation by creating a physiological state that is more synchronized and favorable for introspection and clarity.

After step 4 you should feel a lot more neutral in your feeling, but it may be possible you’re still annoyed or upset about the situation, this is great and in many ways the point of the exercise. Remember the firefighter analogy.

If it’s a really small situation, this awareness might already help us choose to simply let it go. If it’s a larger situation, this exercise helps us reduce the intensity so we can gain a bit more clarity about what’s going on and stop us from simply circling the experience over and over again in our minds, potentially increasing our anger and draining our energy.

Now as a final step, you can take a moment to just assess, what is the story you have been telling yourself about the situation? What might be a more effective way to approach or think about the situation? In the case of getting cut off in the car, was it really personal? If so, how do you know? If it was a mistake, is anger helping you or just providing an undesirable experience? If you had the freedom, would you choose anger at the other driver or to just let it go and maintain better health?

The point here is that with awareness we get clearer on who we are and how we function. This inevitably gives us a choice in how we choose to react.

For more information on this and to build a bit of a deeper practice, you can check out a short course I produced in our members area called CETV. The course is called Improving Daily Self Awareness, Presence & Connection. 

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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