Loving Kindness Guided Meditation
Dhammapada or Loving-kindness meditation is one of the two simplest meditations in Buddhism. This type of meditation helps bring about positive changes in practitioners' lives and helps them develop loving feelings toward all other living creatures.
The main purpose of Dhammapada is to cultivate love and despite the fact that it comes from Buddhist tradition it can be adopted and practiced by anyone regardless of religious beliefs or affiliations. This type of meditation must be practiced without any expectations.
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This is a truly unselfish practice that results in ideal or pure love that each of us is capable of. We begin with loving ourselves and then extend this pure love to include others, starting with people special to us and eventually extending it to all living things.
Reflect on what you want to achieve during this meditation. With your eyes gently closed throughout the meditation begin to cultivate the feeling of loving-kindness. There are many ways to achieve this. One way is to recall the times when you felt loving-kindness and try to recreate these types of feelings during the time of meditation.
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You can also use language that represents the feeling of loving-kindness. You can repeat phrases like "May I be free of pain and suffering", "May I be happy, safe, and protected". Continue breathing in and out as your state these phrases and think or repeat them several times to feel the full effect. Feel the meaning of these words spread through your whole body, mind, and heart.
Finally, extend your loving-kindness outward until it reaches all living things. To do this think of different people in various locations across the globe going about their lives in various ways. In many ways, they do and act and care about the exact same things and this will realization should bring your closer to them and help you to achieve this feeling of love towards them.
After this final stage, sit quietly for few minutes and reflect on your experience you achieved during this meditation. Slowly become aware of your surroundings and gently return to your life of the outside world. Try to hold on to this feeling of love and wellbeing as you go about for the rest of the day.
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