Metta Meditation: A Guide for Beginners to LKM
Being kind to others is important but in doing that we sometimes forget to be kind to ourselves. Metta meditation is a Buddhist meditation practice that is also known as Loving-Kindness Meditation. In Sanskrit, metta is translated to ‘Maitri’ which means benevolence, amity, loving-kindness, and friendliness.
What is Metta Meditation?
Metta meditation is practice is also mentioned in the ancient text of Hinduism and Jainism. This meditation is one of the four divine principles of meditation:
1. Maitri/Metta– benevolence or loving-kindness
2. Karuna– compassion
3. Mudita– empathetic joy
4. Upeksa – calmness or composure
The aim of this meditation practice is to develop kindness and affection for yourself, your friends, family, neighbors, and all living beings around you. This is mainly carried out by saying positive affirmations for all. This meditation exercise improves mental and emotional health and is helpful for reducing negative energy and emotions.
Benefits of Metta Meditation
1. Advocate self-compassion
Metta meditation requires you to repeat positive affirmations to yourself and to others. This practice helps promote compassion for self and others. It can help you to bring down the feelings of unwanted thoughts, self-doubt, anger, and self-criticism.
2.Lowers stress and anxiety
Metta meditation is performed through mindfulness that can help lower the symptoms of stress and anxiety. When you feel compassion for yourself and others, you promote emotions like love and gratitude on a daily basis which helps reduce depression.
3.Encourage social interaction
Metta meditation requires you to stay positive towards others as well as yourself. When you show kindness and compassion to others, you start to nurture those feelings and relationships. When you start loving yourself, you start viewing the world and the people around you in a more positive light.
This meditation technique is very helpful in grounding yourself to the things and people around you. When you’re empathetic towards others, you are promoting longevity and reducing negativity around you.
How to Practice Metta Meditation:
The best part of this meditation practice is that it doesn’t require you to be seated in an isolated room. It can be done by sitting comfortably either on your desk, your garden/balcony, or a quiet nook in your house.
1. Find a comfortable place to sit, close your eyes, and focus on breathing deep in rhythmic patterns.
2. Choose a mantra for repeating to yourself. For instance,
“May I be happy, may I find peace, may I be safe, may I appreciate”
3. Think about a specific set of people you want to direct the positive phrase to and repeat the mantrafor them.
4. Let these affirmations surround you and imagine yourself as giving light to yourself and to those you love.
5. Enlighten your mind with thoughts of gratitude and kindness to all those around you. With a focus on your breathing, slowly open your eyes and remember the positivity even after the meditation ends.
Tips and Tricks for you if You are New to Meditation:
Meditation needs to be done with a purpose and a clear mind. If you’re new to meditation, you need to keep in mind the following:
1. Be patient. Meditation takes time and in an effort to get the best results you need to keep a clear and quiet mind.
2. Distractions are normal but try to stay in the present and concentrate on your breathing.
3. Don’t be too harsh on yourself. Try not to criticize yourself and others while practicing metta meditation.
4. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Create your own positive mantra, whatever works best for you, and don’t be afraid to try new meditation techniques.
Metta meditation calls for you to recite and respect the positive phrases and energy for yourself and others. To bring a positive change to your body, mind, and soul, practice metta meditation regularly. Stop thinking negative thoughts and start thinking positively and kindly.
Breathe in, breathe out. Always remember to love and to be kind to yourself.
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