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Loving Kindness Meditation

May 13, 2015

 

 

Metta Bhavana 

Loving Kindness Meditation - Cultivating loving kindness.

“Love says 'I am everything.' Wisdom says 'I am nothing.' Between the two, my life flows."― Nisargadatta Maharaj

 

It’s often easy to be kind to ourselves when everything is hunky dory, but extremely challenging if things aren’t the way we perceive they should be.

Metta or Loving Kindness Meditation has been proven to change the brain and the mind for the better.

Studies also show that people who practice "self-compassion" stress less easily, then those who don’t. "You don't have to choose between being kind to yourself and others. It's one and the same." Piero Ferrucci Italian Philosopher

This is the first stage. 

Note the intention to grow a little love or whatever your intention might be in this moment.

Eyes open or closed

Recall a person you love easily (perhaps a spiritual figure, an easy loving relationship or pet)

If you like place a hand on your heart, belly, wrap your arms around you or just lay them in your lap.

 

Sit with this love for your loved one, spiritual figure, or pet.

 

Let go, and gently guide the attention to yourself and say the Metta phrases that make sense to you (Say them softly out loud or just in the mind)

May I be happy

May I be safe

May I live my life with ease

May I love and be loved.

You can just repeat one word that feels good for you, safe, safe, safe…; happy..happy

 

Just by practicing Metta for two weeks it’s proven you can change your brain to be more compassionate towards yourself and others #RichardDavidson

 

"While there is no way we can be happy 100% of the time in our lives the intention is that whenever it’s possible may it be so.”- “The mindful path to self-compassion” Christopher K.Germer,PhD.(One of my favourite books on self compassion)

 

This is the 2nd stage (just continue from the last post or you may like to practice each part seperately)

 

Hands supported resting on the body

Bring to mind a good friend.

Loving thoughts come easily with this person/ pet/ spiritual being

Imagine them in front of you. Remind yourself of the positive qualities in this person. Feel the love for this person.

Send the metta phrases that make sense to you, from you to them.

 

May you be happy

May you be safe

May you live your life with ease

May you love and be loved.

 

You may like to visualise a light connecting from you to them, perhaps even from your heart to theirs.

The next step is to offer loving kindness to a neutral person.

A person you neither have positive nor negative effects for.

This is a really beautiful step. You learn that you can create loving kindness towards any human being, the general humanness we all have.

You might know this person from a store, or who works in the office, or even someone on instagram that you know is there but you feel emotionally neutral towards.

 

Begin on the first post ( count 3 back from todays) 

Note the intention to cultivate loving kindness,

Bring an awareness to the natural breath

Note where you are and bring to mind the person that brings positive feelings easily

Send loving kindness towards yourself

Send loving kindness towards a friend

Recall the neutral person repeat these phrases or the phrases that make sense to you.

 

May you be happy

May you be safe 

May you live with ease

May you love and be loved

 

Remember you can always choose to return to offering kindness to yourself. Or fall into just being present with this moment and all that it contains returning to the phrases when ready

So gathering your attention to include the benefactor, the friend, yourself, the neutral person, and the difficult person.

Just choose an easy difficult person. This is a practice that takes time, patience, and if you continue this practice it is a good idea to work with an experienced teacher. Be kind to yourself.

It’s hard to open the heart to people that have annoyed, irritated, harmed us in some way. In no way does it excuse their behaviour; We are just wishing them to be happy, peaceful, kind human beings.

This person suffers too.

If aversion is too strong just return to offering yourself a word or phrase that feels right for you- love, safe, may I be free from suffering…

You can also switch people, if the person turns out to be too difficult, and we offer as much compassion as we can right now in this moment (no matter how small it is).

 

 

Begin with the benefactor

Offer yourself loving kindness

Offer a friend loving kindness

Offer the neutral person loving kindness

Offer the difficult person (as much as you’re able in this moment) 

These phrases or your own:

May you be happy

May you be safe

May you be healthy

May you be loved

 

Or Just as I wish to be happy may you be happy

 

At any time return to the breath, offering yourself compassion “May I be free from this pain and suffering and know that this is just how it is right now”

 

Use your own wisdom. 

 

And now expanding the love out  to include your whole circle

May we all be happy

May we all be safe and free from harm

May we live life with ease

May we love and be loved

 

Expand out  to offering love to the people near you right now in this moment

move out to include your neighbours, town, city. Send the phrases to all groups that make sense to you. Family close by, family far and wide.

Offer the phrases to all beings in the sea, all beings on land, all beings in the air

Expand out to include the world

 

May we all be happy

May we all be safe and free from harm 

May we all live life with ease

May we all love and be loved

 

When you are ready gather attention back onto the breath. Feel the ground beneath you, the sounds around you.

Gently open your eyes

 

Wishing you a happy practice ,

 

 

Namaste.

Click To listen to this meditation 

 

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