Metta ~ Loving Kindness

“To love our enemy is impossible. The moment we understand our enemy, we feel compassion towards him/her, and he/she is no longer our enemy.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

The first of the brahma-vihara is called metta.

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Metta is loving kindness toward all beings without discrimination and without attachment. By practicing metta one can overcome hatred and anger. To cultivate metta, bring to mind a time when you acted in a way that was kind, loving or generous. It can be something very simple, like cooking a meal for someone or opening a door for someone. If you can’t think of anything, you can always bring to mind the desire to be happy, as that is an inherently good state. Meditate by repeating these phrases:
May I be happy.
May I be peaceful.
May I be safe from harm.
May I enjoy happiness and the root of happiness.
May I experience ease and well-being in body, mind, and spirit.

You might practice metta for yourself for a short time or a long time, it totally depends on you. Once you have cultivated loving kindness for yourself, though, you are ready to cultivate it for others. Start with those closest to you and then expand the circle out to people for whom you have neutral emotions. Next you will practice metta toward someone for whom you have more intense negative emotion; perhaps someone you feel has wronged you in some way. Finally you will practice metta toward all beings.


34 Comments on “Metta ~ Loving Kindness

  1. Pingback: Brahma-Vihara | Yoga With Maheshwari

  2. Love it. I just did a post on kindness yesterday. Always a great reminder, you can never be TOO kind.

  3. Pingback: Mudita ~ Sympathetic Joy | Yoga With Maheshwari

  4. This is just beautiful! I would love to create a subway art peace with your permission using your meditation phrase and link back to you in my post! Would that be ok!?

    • That would be lovely, however, the meditation phrases are from Buddhist teachings and are not my own. I don’t know the original person who wrote these, I’d imagine just referencing it as ‘Traditional Buddhist Teaching’ would be ok though.

    • There are so many beautiful teachings in the Buddhist tradition, I’m not Buddhist myself (more of a multi-faith kind of girl) but but I do love exploring the religion and sharing what I find. Thanks for reading and commenting!

  5. p.s. – Just decided to post this on my blog soon. Hopefully it’ll send some extra folks to your lovely blog as well! Have a day filled with noticing-your-blessings!

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  15. This is wonderful. I need to put this on my fridge, and let all my family be inspired. Thanks for visiting my site! Namaste, Brenda

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