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How to Meditate Buddhist Loving-Kindness Meditation

By sunny breeze

Meditation is a practice that can bring a lot of peace and calm in your life. Just by meditating a couple of minutes every day, you can change the way you look at yourself, how you interact with other people and the way you look at life in general. Meditation can bring a lot of positive energy into your life.

There are numerous types of Buddhist meditations. In the following we will describe the basics of one of them: the Buddhist "Loving Kindness meditation", a simple, yet powerful technique for giving and receiving positive energy. The Loving-Kindness meditation is a heart meditation. It can be of great help if you want to become a person capable of offering love and compassion to your friends and family and to all people you keep close to your heart.

loving kindness quote by a Tibetan Lama

The Benefits

Loving-Kindness is a meditation designed for awakening various qualities of love. Within the boundaries of this meditation we speak of four levels of love: friendliness, compassion, joy and equanimity.

Friendliness means reaching out and embracing other people. After some time of meditation practice, friendliness in naturally transformed into compassion - that is, an ability to see, understand and empathize with the problems and hardships of others. On the next level, compassion is naturally turned into appreciative joy. Appreciative joy comes from the realization of other people's good qualities, positive character traits as well as from enjoying in their good fortune. Equanimity comes as the last achievement in this meditation system, bringing an equal degree of kindness, love and caring toward everyone, regardless of the actual situation you are in, your personal tendencies or relationships.

Step-by-Step Guide

Here is a step by step guide into this form of meditation:

  1. Go to your meditation room or just find a quiet spot where you can spend some time without being disturbed. In principle, meditation can be exercised everywhere, provided that you are able to focus properly and distance yourself from the environment.
  2. Clear your mind. Make sure that there are no negative thoughts or emotions, such as anger, anxiety, fear, frustration, sadness... If you find that your mind is disturbed by your daily problems, give it some time to calm down naturally and relax thoroughly before moving to the next step.
  3. This meditation should always begin with developing loving kindness and acceptance for yourself. Simply put, you cannot expect to be able to love and accept other people unless you love and accept yourself.
  4. Close your eyes and visualize yourself doing things you love. Imagine you are surrounded by people you love and who love you in return. Make positive statements about yourself using affirmations. Select a phrase that you will repeat mentally, such as "loving kindness" or similar. It will serve as a positive reinforcement during your meditation, imprinting on the levels of your subconscious mind.
  5. After some time, usually a week or two, include other people into your meditation. Reflect on their positive qualities, and recollect the generous deeds they might have done in the past. There are four types of people you should reflect upon in your meditation, in the following order:

    - a respected ideal person - such as your guru or spiritual teacher
    - a very close person - such as your loved ones
    - a neutral person - such as distant family members or acquaintances
    - a hostile person - such as someone you have hard time being or coping with.
  6. In the advanced phase of your meditation, project your awaken feelings of loving kindness all around you. You could include your friends, all the like minded people that you know, all the like-minding people that you do not know, as well as different cities, countries and finally the whole planet Earth.
  7. Take the vibration of love and appreciation you have aroused outside into world. Let the meditation of loving-kindness become your daily habit, which in turn brings many benefits. Create the habit of openness toward every person you relate to, without discrimination.

Additional Important Notes

Never think in negative terms, even when meditating on a hostile person. Try to find the positive side in everyone.

Be focused and determined, never allowing your imagination to get out of hand.

Avoid meditating on the opposite sex or on people you are passionate about because of the risk of awakening lust, rather than love. Lust is the main enemy of loving-kindness.

Think of using a personalized mantra for the people you meditate on.

Once you have become an experienced meditator of love-kindness, there will no longer be the need to focus on a specific object or person. Your meditation will become a natural radiation of feelings of universal, all-embracing, unconditional love for all aspects of creation.


About the Author

sunny breeze is a member of sunnyray's staff.

Loving Kindness Video


nancy says:

Loving kindness is a universal principle. Christianity also encourages its followers to develop love and kindness toward God and toward entire creation. The gracious love of God is, of course, greatest. A quote from the Bible: "Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips will praise You." Thanks.

Bernadette says:

Wow!! Thank you so much I truly enjoyed and felt great joy while doing this meditation. I was very powerful, I even cried while meditating. Very relaxing and it made me feel at easy and calmer.

Love and light
Thank you

sunnyray says:

Dear Bernadette
Thank you for the kind words. I am so happy for you. May your whole life be filled with loving kindness. God bless.

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