The purpose of this meditation is to strengthen our conviction that cherishing others is the path to happiness, and then to consider what this means in light of wishing love.

I began with dissolving my Spiritual Guide into my heart and meditating on his/our stillness and stability. After a while I moved on.

I began by thinking about how self-cherishing pulls a curtain around me and says ‘don’t go out there – stay in here where it’s safe’. It tries to convince me that only by keeping my concerns with myself can I be happy. I imagined pulling away the curtain and focusing on others instead of myself, much to my self-cherishing’s displeasure.

I thought about what attracts people to play video games, or watch films, or to read books. The ones they like the most are the ones where they are transported into someone else’s  experience. In video games we control an avatar, and we transport our ‘self’ onto them. When watching particularly enjoyable films or reading absorbing books, we are once again transported out of ourselves and into another situation or persons experience. Why do we like the experience of these things? Because we have forgotten about our ‘selves’, and when we forget about ourselves we naturally experience happiness.

When the game is over or the film or book finishes, we are left back in ‘reality’, but in fact the only thing that has changed is that the appearance of self has returned, and with it, the unpleasant feeling of self-cherishing.

I thought about something a Dharma friend said to me this week – she said that ‘Once you have tasted cherishing others, you will know that it is the path to happiness’. That really struck me, and I focused on the ideas that we KNOW we experience happiness when we have forgotten ourselves, and instead of doing this through books and films, we can do it all the time through the holy practice of cherishing others.

So I took as my object of meditation the fact that cherishing others is the path to happiness, and I determined to try my very best to always impute myself upon others, to be concerned with the happiness and freedom of others, and to recognise that by cherishing others, I will experience happiness. I focused on this wish for a while…

After that I considered what this means in light of wishing love.

Wishing love is the wish for others to be happy – the feeling of cherishing others is an essential part of this, because if we do not cherish others we will never develop the true wish for them to be happy. Understanding this, I returned to my meditation on cherishing others.

Dedication

May all living beings be transported out of themselves by the practice of cherishing others, and leaving their illusory self behind, experience true happiness and inner peace.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will cherish others because this is the path to happiness.