My Favorite Meditation: Part II

Loving Kindness.

This is the second post in a series describing the three-part meditation I do that always brings me peace. The first part, described here, describes briefly how to identify exactly what’s bothering you and release it. This leaves your mind empty, clear, and open. Now you need to fill it up with something good.

trustyourfeelingsThis meditation is lifted directly from Buddhism. Some people who are less familiar with Buddhism are turned off by the rough translation of its most basic elements (that all life is suffering, and our only hope for peace is oblivion). They are frequently surprised to find compassion at the heart of Buddhism as well. Christianity exhorts its practitioners to love their neighbors as themselves, but Buddhism plants love at the center of the self and then expands it in an ever-widening spiral to the limits of the imagination.

There are lots of different ways to do the loving-kindness meditation. One of my favorites is this one, by Gregory Kramer, designed for children:

I love myself.
May I be free from anger.
May I be free from sadness.
May I be free from pain.
May I be free from difficulties.
May I be free from all suffering.
May I be healthy.
May my body be healthy and strong.
May I be filled with loving-kindness.
May I be happy.
May I be really happy.
May I be at peace.

I spread this loving-kindness out.
I send love to Dad and Mom.
May Dad and Mom be free from difficulties.
May they be free from pain and sadness.
May they be free from attachment,
Free from anger and ill-will.
May they be free from all suffering.
May Mom and Dad be healthy and happy.
Completely healthy and happy.
May they be at peace.

I send loving-kindness to both my brothers.
May they be free from sadness and anger.
May they be free from sickness.
May they be free from all suffering.
May they be happy and free.
Free from suffering, free from difficulties.
May they be well and happy.
May they be at peace.

I send loving-kindness to my teachers
and the kids at school.
May they be free from sorrow and suffering.
May they be free from anger and difficulties.
May they be happy.
Free from all difficulties and sadness.
May they be well and happy.
May they be at peace.

I send love now to all the people
I don’t know, everywhere on this earth.
May all beings on the planet be free from suffering.
May they be free from pain, grief, and despair.
May they be happy, truly happy.
May they be at peace.

May all beings in the universe be free from suffering.
May all beings in all universes, everwhere, be free from suffering.
May they be well and happy.
May they be at peace.

May all beings of all kinds, in all directions be happy and at peace.
Above and below, near and far, high and low.
All types of beings. Human and non-humans.
Seen and unseen.
All the animals and birds, and fishes.
All beings and creatures, with no exceptions.
May they all be happy.
May they be free.

I open my heart and accept loving-kindness
of every being and creature in return.
I let that love into my heart.
And I share the benefits of this meditation with every one.

May all beings be well and happy.
May all beings be well and happy.
May all beings be well and happy.
May there be peace.
May there be peace.
May there be peace.

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