In the next day or so this long, protracted and acrimonious US Election will draw to a close. None of us know exactly what the outcome will be - or how the country will react once a result is know. I am, however, ready to make a prediction. The prediction is simply that even once it is over, we won't see a lot of love being shared out there.
So while I hope you will vote if you are eligible, I also hope that you will strive to show love to those around you, and to those who you disagree with. Whether you have 'a side' or deep convictions, or even if you are jaded and tired of all of the pols, find a way to allow your passion - or disenchantment - be suffused with love.
In my 'day job' I work in the research Industry, and so I have a lot of exposure to the state of our culture, and one thing that all of the research shows is that we are becoming more divided, more distrustful and more antagonistic towards each other. Of course you don't need researchers like me to tell you that, you just have to turn on your TV or radio.
So it is more important than ever that we choose not to simply follow along and let ourselves get swept up by the acrimony. Yes, this is an important election, and people on both sides are highly passionate about their beliefs and positions. I am not saying that we shouldn't work hard for justice and peace - we definitely should - but that as we do so we don't let go of a true core of metta - loving-kindness.
The ancient practice of metta bhavana (cultivation of loving-kindness) is the ideal way to prepare ourselves for weeks such as these, where our grounding in love can be shaking. You can find a fully guided 30 minute metta bhavana meditation, together with a short introduction to the practice, below.
I would like to invite all of you to in your own way share a little love this week - whether it is to your peers or those you disagree totally with. Beware the dialog of hatred, and instead try to apply the lessons of loving-kindness.
It's not easy. But nothing this radical is. This is how the world is changed. Let's all try and change it just a little.
Wishing you a loving and peaceful week, Chris
The following fully guided meditation allows us to cultivate metta - even in times of strife and conflict
If the embedded audio player above doesn't work for you, please click here.