Metta – the prayer of loving kindness

Mettā (Pali) or Maitrī (Sanskrit)

Metta or loving kindness meditation often comes at the end of meditation practice, though it can used as a full meditation of loving kindness. In Metta we are expressing caring and empathy for all sentient, feeling, beings. Traditionally this begins with yourself and the, like ripples from a pond spreads in ever increasing circles to encompass all of creation.

In this blog I am partly quoting from Bodhipaksa who is a Buddhist practitioner and teacher, and founder of Wildmind in 2001. Well worth a visit.

What is Metta?

Metta is recognising that all sentient beings can feel good or feel bad, and that all, given the choice, will choose the former over the latter. Such contact with feeling imply that there can be suffering. This is the point where I become a vegetarian. The bottom line is that another animal does not have to die in order for me to live and that other animals do not need to suffer so that I can live.

Metta is the solidarity that we have with others, this sharing of a common aspiration to find fulfilment and escape suffering. In this we are all one if we realise that in looking after each other we will all be OK, we create heaven on Earth, but only if we want to.

Metta is empathy. It’s the willingness to see the world from another’s point of view: to walk a mile in another person’s shoes. When we are awake and aware we can learn from the experience of others. When we are asleep we have to suffer in order to learn.

Metta is the desire that all sentient beings be well, or at least the ones we’re currently thinking about or in contact with. It’s wishing others well. When we look after others the chances are that they will look after us and wish us well. Creating the positive and peaceful family of creation.

Metta is friendliness, consideration, kindness, generosity.
Charity is when we offer friendliness and support to others.

Metta is an attitude rather than just a feeling.
It’s an attitude of friendliness.

Metta is compassion.
When our loving kindness meets another’s suffering, then our Metta transforms into compassion.

Metta is shared joy.
When our Metta meets with another’s happiness or good fortune, then it transmutes into an empathetic joyfulness.

Metta is boundless. We can feel Metta for any sentient being, regardless of gender, race, nationality species.

Metta is the most fulfilling emotional state that we can know. It’s the fulfilment of the emotional development of every being. It’s our inherent potential. To wish another well is to wish that they be in a state of experiencing Metta.

Metta is the answer to almost every problem the world faces today. Money won’t do it. Technology won’t do it. Metta will.

That last point is so simple. All the world problems could be solved right now with a little loving kindness.

Too often politics and the media go out of their way to reinforce the differences between people. Metta shows how similar we all are, and not just human beings all animals, all of creation.

Have a go at the meditation of loving kindness on the Palouse site and enjoy the other great links, knowledge and facilities offered there.
Here is a link to a full metta loving kindness meditation…

Be happy and share the love

Take care

Sean x

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