The purpose of this meditation is to develop compassion – the wish that all living beings should be free from suffering, and then to meditate on this wish in light of the kindness of others.

I began with some breathing meditation to sooth my mind and bring everything back into my centre.

After a while I moved on to the main meditation and started thinking about where I am in the Lamrim. I have developed equanimity and cherishing love for all living beings. I have contemplated the disadvantages of self-cherishing and the advantages of cherishing others, and I have decided to channel all my energy into cherishing others rather than myself.

Now that I am free to cherish others, when I look at them, what do I see?

I see that these lovely, generous and kind beings are so desperately unhappy. They are deeply unhappy. They suffer constant disappointment and problems. They feel like there is nothing that can be depended upon, and no true ‘firm ground’ on which they can stand.

I tried to feel their pain as keenly as they do. As I did so, I felt like I wanted to hold them in my arms and hold their head against my chest, like I do with my children when they are upset. I focused on this image and this feeling of wanting them to be free from their suffering for the rest of the meditation. It was a simple enough point, but I found it worked very well for me today.

I then thought about what this means in light of the kindness of all living beings. Once again it seemed very reasonable that this action on  my part was really a pitiful response to their kindness – I need to repay their kindness. I brought my mind back to the feeling of holding and comforting all living beings, and remained with it for the rest of the meditation.

Dedication

May all living beings realise true compassion in their hearts, and may it bring about the ripening of their Buddha nature so that they become enlightened in this lifetime.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will try to see the suffering of others, and comfort them, and free them from their suffering.

 

Meditation 9/14