Love and kindness. Two powerful expressions one can experience and most likely want more of. If there was something you could do to experience more love and kindness, would you do it? Of course you would! The Love and Kindness Meditation is a simple meditation, which you can use to bring more positive feelings in your life.
The Love and Kindness Meditation, much as the name suggests, teaches people to extend love and kindness to all beings through meditation. By encouraging compassion to all beings, this meditation has many health benefits such as decreased levels of anxiety, increase positive affect, and more. It is a simple meditation that anyone can do with easy-to-follow steps for extending compassion to yourself, people you love, and even people you dislike.
How to do the Love and Kindness Meditation
To begin this meditation you must be in a seated posture with a straight spine. Then you recited these 7 phrases four times:
- May I be free from inner and outer harm and danger.
- May I be safe and protected.
- May I be free of mental suffering or distress.
- May I be happy.
- May I be free of physical pain and suffering.
- May I be healthy and strong.
- May I be able to live in this world happily, peacefully, joyfully, with ease.
For the first part of this meditation, extend kindness to yourself and remove self-doubt.
Next, you recite these words of compassion to a respected person, such a mentor. This should be comfortable because you already have positive feelings toward them.
For the third recitation of these phrases, you repeat them to a neutral person. This should be slightly less comfortable than before but encourage you to spread compassion to people you don't know.
Lastly, recite these phrases to someone who you have negative feelings towards or difficulties with. Saying these kind phrases to someone you dislike can be uncomfortable. However, extending love and kindness to people you have difficulty with builds compassion in the challenging aspects of your life. Compassion is needed for the good people, but especially the challenging ones.
As you recite these phrases, be sure to visualize actually giving praise, and that praise is being received. The importance of this visualization to reinforce the feeling of kindness and love you are creating.
Note: This is one way to do the love and kindness meditation. There are several different versions of this meditation due to different Buddhist traditions. But, this form is simple and extremely beneficial.
The Purpose of the Love and Kindness Meditation
The intention of this meditation is to better the person by increasing compassion towards everyone. Love and Kindness Meditation teaches us to pay attention to how our mind works and keeps the mind positive. You can reap the benefits of this meditation by reciting it as part of a series, or enjoy it on its own.
Though this meditation, you will enjoy an increased ability to deal with negative emotions and build compassion for all beings, including yourself! Eventually, over time the meditation teaches selflessness and altruistic love. You will more joyfully accept life with all of its beautiful advantages... and disadvantages.
Proven Benefits of The Love and Kindness Meditation
The Love and Kindness meditation not only makes you a better person but is scientifically proven to have several therapeutic properties:
- According to experts, people who practiced the Love and Kindness Meditation over time experience higher levels of positive emotion throughout their daily experiences. Benefits include increased mindfulness, social support, purpose in life, and fewer symptoms of illness.
- The love and kindness meditation has been shown to lower levels of pain, anger and psychological distress in people who suffer from chronic back pain.
- The Love and Kindness Meditation lowers levels of depression in veterans that suffer from PTSD.
The Love and Kindness meditation benefits your emotional and physical health with therapeutic properties such as increased personal confidence, compassion, and reduced levels of anger and depression. This simple meditation is one that anyone can do and with consistency you will undoubtedly see the benefits.