Metta meditation

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Metta meditation (mettà bhàvanà, loving kindness meditation) is a practice taught by the Buddha to both encourage and strengthen the ability to be more kind, thoughtful, gentle and loving.

To do this practice one sits in a comfortable posture, evokes a prayerful attitude and then thinks of oneself and wishes oneself well. Then one thinks of a cherished person, a neutral person, a disliked person and finally all people and likewise wishes them well in turn. Done with sensitivity and over a period of time, loving kindness meditation gradually develops a deeper self-acceptance, a strengthened appreciation of those one already loves, a warm and growing interest in casual acquaintances and less ill-will towards those one previously did not like.

Concerning the benefits of practicing loving kindness meditation the Buddha said, ‘If the freedom of the mind brought about by love is cultivated and enhanced, always practiced, made one’s vehicle and foundation, strengthened, consolidated and properly undertaken, one will be blessed in these eleven ways. One sleeps happily, wakes happily, has no bad dreams, is dear to humans, dear to non-humans, cherished by the gods, protected from fire, poison and weapons, easily concentrated, has a radiant complexion, passes away peacefully and after death at the very least is reborn in heaven’ (A.V,342).

Metta meditation/prayer

There are different versions for doing this meditation. But here are some typical words and reflections that are repeated to oneself silently or out loud:

May I be well, happy, and peaceful. May no harm come to me. May no difficulties come to me. May no problems come to me. May I have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

May my parents [and/or children] be well, happy, and peaceful. May no harm come to them. May no difficulties come to them. May no problems come to them. May they have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

May my teachers be well, happy, and peaceful. May no harm come to them. May no difficulties come to them. May no problems come to them. May they have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

May my relatives be well, happy, and peaceful. May no harm come to them. May no difficulties come to them. May no problems come to them. May they have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

May my friends be well, happy, and peaceful. May no harm come to them. May no difficulties come to them. May no problems come to them. May they have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

May my enemies be well, happy, and peaceful. May no harm come to them. May no difficulties come to them. May no problems come to them. May they have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

May all beings in the universe be well, happy, and peaceful. May no harm come to them. May no difficulties come to them. May no problems come to them. May they have patience, courage, understanding, and determination to meet and overcome inevitable difficulties, problems, and failures in life.

See also

References