The purpose of this meditation is to generate a delightful feeling of cherishing others.

I began by making the appropriate preparations for meditation and then brought to mind that the Kadampa teachers say that cherishing others is the cause of pure inner peace.

French_meditating_woman-248x300I thought about how whenever I am unhappy, it is because I am relating to myself in some way. I am sometimes unhappy because my wishes are not fulfilled or I am experiencing problems. These are feeling generated because of my relating strongly to my own importance. But sometimes I appear to be unhappy when I am thinking of others. When I contemplate their suffering sometimes I am unhappy. But why? When I look harder, it is because there is always some self-cherishing operating. I may feel that I am letting them down by not helping them enough, but this is self-cherishing saying ‘you are not good enough!’

I thought about simply cherishing others with no consideration of my ‘self’ at all. What would it be like?

It would involve a complete focus on others – a total blanket focus on the importance of others, and the importance of their happiness and freedom. I would be solely concerned for their happiness, without any thought for myself. This cherishing feeling became stronger and stronger in my mind. It was uncontaminated with any thoughts of ‘me’ or ‘my happiness’.

In fact, the stronger the feeling became, the happier I felt. My feeling of happiness came from my feeling of cherishing others. Whereas normally my feelings of happiness come from when I am receiving praise, respect, material things, a good reputation etc. These sources are treacherous because when the supply of praise ends (or turns into blame), so too does my happiness end. My source of happiness in cherishing others will never disappear – it can only get stronger as my concentration improves.

So I settled on the thought of cherishing others, and the sense of my cherishing intention spreading out away from my centre, until my ‘self’ fell into a kind of blind spot, where it was just not visible or appearing in any other way to my mind. It was very blissful and delightful – a marvelous and joyful feeling, filled with happiness. I let it fill me for the rest of the meditation.

Dedication

May all living beings cherish others freely and joyfully. Through this practice may they quickly attain enlightenment for the benefit of all.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will try to remember my delightful feeling of cherishing others, and actually cherish others throughout the day.