Metta Meditation: The Power of Loving-Kindness

August 28, 2021

Metta meditation is an ancient form of Buddhist meditation that focuses on the cultivation of kindness and compassion. These are qualities that we all possess, but sometimes need reminding to tap into. Metta meditation can help us to develop these qualities so we can become more aware of our own minds, as well as those around us.

What is metta meditation?

Metta meditation, also known as loving-kindness meditation, is a form of mindfulness practice that helps to develop the qualities of 'loving-kindness' and compassion. It is intended to foster compassionate feelings for oneself and others with the use of positive phrases and visualizations. It differs slightly from mindfulness meditation in that you deliberately think about and recite well wishes as part of the core meditation. Loving-kindness meditation is a process of bringing warmth and friendliness to oneself, others, and the world around us.

Why practice metta meditation?

Metta meditation is an ancient form of Buddhist meditation that focuses on the cultivation of kindness and compassion. These are qualities that we all possess, but sometimes need reminding to tap into. Metta meditation can help us to develop these qualities so we can become more aware of our own minds, as well as those around us.

What is metta meditation?

Metta meditation, also known as loving-kindness meditation, is a form of mindfulness practice that helps to develop the qualities of 'loving-kindness' and compassion. It is intended to foster compassionate feelings for oneself and others with the use of positive phrases and visualizations. It differs slightly from mindfulness meditation in that you deliberately think about and recite well wishes as part of the core meditation. Loving-kindness meditation is a process of bringing warmth and friendliness to oneself, others, and the world around us.

Why practice metta meditation?

Metta Meditation: Power of Loving-Kindness | Mukha Yoga

It's easy to have thoughts like, "I'm not good enough," or "I'm not worth it." It's also easy to fall into a pattern of seeing the negative in those around us as well. Even with our loved ones, we may hold feelings of resentment or anger from time to time. Loving-kindness meditation helps us to strengthen our awareness, acceptance, and compassion towards ourselves and others.

Having a heart of kindness is not just about the people you like or love, but also extends to those who are difficult for us as well. As you might realize through practice, it's often easier to cultivate kindness for your loved ones than for the challenging people in your life. But through practice, you can learn to extend that loving-kindness to everyone.

Science-backed benefits of metta meditation | Mukha Yoga

Science-backed benefits of metta meditation

While there has been a long history of metta meditation practice, there is now a growing body of research that supports the benefits of this meditation. For example, one study found that veterans who engaged in loving-kindness meditation experienced reduced depression and PTSD symptoms and enhanced self compassion.1

Research suggests that metta meditation can:

  • Reduce anxiety symptoms2
  • Increase feelings of joy and wellbeing3
  • Alleviate chronic pain4
  • Promote self-compassion5
  • Activate brain areas responsible for emotion regulation and empathy6

How can I start a metta meditation practice in my own life?

You can start by sitting in an upright position with your spine straight, then close your eyes. Begin by focusing on the breath to center yourself and prepare for your meditation. Then use any of the following phrases to guide yourself through this process:

"May I be happy"

"May I be safe"

"May I be healthy"

"May I be free from suffering"

Wanting an example of metta meditation? Allow Julie to guide you.

Allow yourself to feel your kind intentions towards yourself. You can visualize yourself receiving your well-wishes. You may even start to feel feelings of love, joy and warmth radiating within. Tap into these feelings as you continue to repeat the loving-kindness phrases. You can then focus your attention on your loved ones and send your compassionate intentions to them. Visualize someone you care about, and recite the phrases that resonate most with you.

You can even extend your compassion to your community, or the world. Imagine feelings of love and compassion coming from your heart in waves or ripples that expand outward into space as they grow larger, encompassing everyone you wish to send loving-kindness to.

Mila Meldosian

By Mila Meldosian; All Rights Reserved @2021

Mila MeldosianBy Mila Meldosian; All Rights Reserved @2021



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