Friday, June 10, 2016

Loving Kindness... A Practice in Cultivating Compassion

Sometimes my emotions get the best of me. It is through my breath
and meditation I bring myself to a place of balance where I am responsive as opposed to reactive. By stepping back from our internal narrative, we step into the role of an observer who is aware of thoughts and sensations as they are. This is our meditation practice which welcomes us to free ourselves from attachment and honor where and who we are in present time. With anger, disappointment or frustration leading the emotional upset, I find the meditation technique of Loving Kindness to be deeply rewarding.

Loving Kindness begins by cultivating feelings of compassion, love, and goodwill towards self. The meditation progresses by extending thoughts of compassion to others. This progression is intentional in that it enables a growth of Loving Kindness feelings where it's easier (self, loved one, etc.) and builds to holding them towards people that it may not be as easy (acquaintance, enemy, etc.).

I've recorded two guided Loving Kindness meditations. One a bit shorter than the other includes two iterations of the Loving Kindness intentions; one for self and one for others. The Loving Kindness extended version includes 5 iterations: for self, a loved one, an acquaintance, an individual that frustrates or angers you, and all living beings. The image contains the intentions that form our Loving Kindness meditation.

These intentions may be used any time. Feel free to print them and put it in your wallet or save a picture on your phone. In time they'll be committed to your memory and as challenging situations arise you are able to avoid the full emotional upheaval by cultivating compassion within and sharing it with others.

Here are some links to help you understand the benefits of cultivating compassion with this meditation:
May you be enriched by your practice in cultivating compassion.

Lynn Marie

May we be free from all harm. May we be safe and protected.
May we be free from all suffering. May we be happy.
May we be free from all disease and physical pain. May we be healthy and strong.
May we be able to live in this world happily, peacefully, joyfully and with ease.