The purpose of this mediation is to develop the belief that we can give pure happiness to others, and then to meditate on this giving in light of equalising self and others.
I began with breathing meditation, counting the breaths up to 18 and then starting again, and after a while my jumpy mind calmed down and focused. I actually came up with something new. I imagined the numbers (1,2 etc.) floating down in front of me and then being squashed flat by the next number, so the number 1 appeared first, and then the number two descended onto it and gently flattened it. Then the number 3 came down and squashed the 2. The thing that worked for me was that I imagined my mind was caught between the numbers 1 and 2, and could not move away from the number counting. It seemed to work quite well and I’ll keep using it to see if it continues to work. It seemed to prevent my mind wandering rather well.
I then moved on to the actual meditation. In my GP class this week I was teaching about giving, and how wonderful it is to have the feeling that you could literally give everything away – without a hint of miserliness – if the circumstances were right. I imagined everything I am and everything I call ‘mine’ manifesting in my heart as golden light. My body transformed into the nature of a wish fulfilling jewel and the golden light radiated out towards all other living beings. I imagined the light touching them and allowing them to experience complete inner peace.
I tried to picture their faces, and imagined a beautiful woman’s face – what kind of smile would she have it she were experiencing true inner peace? I imagined a broad joyful laughing smile, but this didn’t seem right – it was too excited. I toned it down to a more fitting grin, but this was still too animated: the feeling of true inner peace would elicit a tranquil relaxed expression with a subtle smile playing on the lips. Of course! It is the face of Buddha! Someone experiencing inner peace would have an expression like that of the most beautiful Buddha statue. I imagined this beautiful woman’s face with a completely relaxed expression, and the faintest of contented smiles. And as I imagined this smile, I felt that same feeling. I imagined this feeling was shared by all living beings – that I had given pure inner peace to all living beings. I stayed with that joyful tranquil feeling for a while, and then moved on.
The next stage was to see what this feeling meant in light of equalising self and others.
To equalise myself and others means to equalise my love for myself and my love for others. As I was thinking about giving love to others, it seemed very natural that this is an example of equalising. I imagined my own inner peace and through the golden light emanating from my heart, I imagined all other living beings experiencing inner peace too. I rested my mind on this inner peace and joy for the rest of the meditation.
May all living beings develop true inner peace, and attain the actual power to give this inner peace to others.
Practice in the Meditation Break
I will try to remember how beautiful it is to feel like (if the circumstances were right) that I could give away anything I call ‘mine’, and look for ways to practice the four givings of giving material help, fearlessness, dharma and love to everyone I meet.