The purpose of this meditation is to develop the lovely feeling of equanimity.

meghan-o-rourke.credit-sarah-shatz.largeI began by making the appropriate preparations for meditation and then brought to mind the three groups I normally divide others into. I usually see others as either friends, enemies or strangers. When I meet someone who I think is a friend, I develop attachment, and I believe that they ‘contain’ happiness, which I can somehow take from them. When I meet someone who I think is an enemy, I develop aversion and believe that they ‘contain’ unhappiness like an infectious disease which I can somehow catch. And when I meet someone who I think is a stranger, I develop a flat, uncaring response, which stops me being interested or empathetic to them.

All these distinctions are my by my conceptual mind, and they have no real basis. They are just imputations upon other living beings. They are not intrinsically my friends, my enemies or strangers. These are false distinctions which only cause me problems.

In reality all others are simply living beings with their own histories, thoughts, feelings and needs. To stop my mind being knocked and distorted by my normal attitudes, I need to develop equanimity to everyone I meet. I need to develop a warm and friendly feeling towards everyone, and this will prevent me generating attachment, aversion and ignorance.

I contemplated:

I must develop a warm and friendly feeling towards everyone I meet because this will enable me to avoid the inner poisons of attachment, anger and ignorance, and allow me to develop true love and compassion for all living beings.

With this in mind, I imagined my family, friends, work colleagues and then all living beings in turn, and developed a lovely warm and friendly feeling towards them all.

Dedication

May all living beings enjoy the lovely protection of equanimity.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will try to remember my wish to develop equanimity towards all living beings. This will be quite useful today as I have a big meeting and this will be a perfect opportunity to practice.