Monday, January 18, 2016

It's Really Easy to Love Everyone...'s that guy at work who's hard!

Or the woman on the cellphone weaving between lanes. Or the rabid political commentator. Or the Facebook 'friend' who posts all those terrible jokes. Or the family member who is making your life miserable...

One of the ways that true Loving-kindness or 'Metta' differs from empty affirmations is that it is real and specific. It's not just declaring that you 'love all beings'. That's easy. Anyone can pay lip service to an abstract idea of universal love and fellowship.

It's the specific people who make it hard. That is why our core practice - Metta Bhavana or the 'cultivation of love' is highly specific. We bring real people from our daily lives to mind, and we practice offering them unconditional love.

For most of us that is really hard. But it is that very difficulty that makes the practice worthwhile. It is a true practice, and ongoing commitment to growing our ability to love all beings bit by bit.

In the attached meditation we practice generating loving-kindness for all the people you will meet or interact with in the next few days. It starts with a short introduction then a fully guided 30 minute metta meditation.

If the embedded audio player above doesn't work for you, please click here.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Metta Meditation Cancelled Today, January 3rd 2016

Hi all, when I woke this morning the forecast was showing it warming a bit this evening. However, that has now been revised and it looks like it may be nasty, so I'm cancelling tonight's group just in case.

Please stay warm and safe, and have a great week.

    Metta, Chris.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Metta Letter: Forget the New Year Resolutions and Do Nothing Now!

If you are not on the 'Metta Letter' mailing list you can read the latest tiny newsletter by clicking here. You can also subscribe to future mailings here. I promise to keep them short, interesting and infrequent!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Just Sitting: Doing Nothing for the Holidays

What is the best gift you can give yourself for the Holidays?

The holidays are, for many of us, a mixed experience. There is joy and friendship, coupled with stress and good old fashioned consumerism. Striking a balance can be hard.

And then there's the question of what can you give yourself?

I often refer to meditation as a 'gift' you can give yourself. There is an apocryphal story of a meditation teacher who was asked how often you should meditate. His answer was simple: "Once a day, unless you are busy, in which case twice a day."

So this holiday be sure to give yourself the gift of doing noting - as often as you need it!

The following audio is a short introduction to 'Just Sitting' meditation, together with a fully guided 30 minute sit.

If the embedded audio player above doesn't work for you, please click here.

photo credit: Creepy Santa via photopin (license)

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Lovingkindness as a Radical Act [AUDIO]

Is practicing Lovingkindness the spiritual equivalent of rainbows and ponies, or is it a truly radical act?

In this week's meditation we cut through the tendency to equate generating Metta (lovingkindness) with simple positive thinking. Metta is not simply repeating aphorisms, or striving to be 'nice'. At it's heart it is a truly radical stance, that is at complete odds with our culture and society.

Choosing to follow the path of lovingkindness is hard, and sets you apart from the norms most live by.

As Chögyam Trungpa says in "The Sacred Path of the Warrior";
“The essence of warriorship, or the essence of human bravery, is refusing to give up on anyone or anything.” 
That's refusing to give up loving yourself, your friend, the neutral person, your enemy - and all sentient beings.

And that is radical.

In the audio below we have a short introduction, together with a fully guided 30 minute Metta (Lovingkindness) Meditation.

If the embedded audio player above doesn't work for you, please click here.