The purpose of this meditation is to completely exchange our self-cherishing attitude in favour of an attitude which cherishes others, and then to think about this in light of the fact that all living beings are our mother.

I began as usual with some breathing meditation to clear my mind, and then I moved on to the meditation proper.

I began by reviewing the disadvantages of self-cherishing and the advantages of cherishing others. After a while of doing this, it seemed to me that we need to be in a position where we have forgotten about this ‘self’ we used to be obsessed with, rather like we have forgotten about a bad boyfriend from years ago. You know the type – motorbike, tattoos, we know he is bad for us but we want him anyway? Just the kind of boyfriend who will cause us nothing but trouble.

Although we were once completely infatuated with this bad boy, we are now SO glad we didn’t get mixed up with him. We need to get to that place with our ‘self’. Our ‘self’ is the bad boy who leads us into bad ways and lots of trouble. Although we can see the harm it does, we are so obsessed we carry on regardless.

There are so many advantages to cherishing others, and so many problems stemming from self-cherishing that I must definitely abandon this bad boy for the light and happiness of cherishing others.

I thought about how happy I will be when I have finally broken free of this obsession with ‘self’, and I determined to be free by thinking only of cherishing others. I stayed with this intention for a while and focused on it. It was lovely, like I was rising up out of the darkness of self-obsession and into the light and warmth of universal love. I stayed floating in this universal love for a while.

I then brought in the aspect that all living beings are my mother. This added a wider dimension similar to yesterday’s meditation in that all living beings have been very kind to me in the past and continue to be kind to me now. It is entirely appropriate to cherish them completely, and much more useful than silly and harmful self-cherishing. I returned to the notion of floating into complete light and not being tainted by even a hint of self-cherishing, and stayed with it for the rest of the meditation.


May all living beings make the transition from self-cherishing to the cherishing of others, and see that this is the path that leads directly to enlightenment. May they travel the path quickly, and attain great enlightenment for the benefit of all.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will shun the bad boy of self-cherishing, and focus on cherishing others.