Buddhist Meditation Script - Guided Loving-Kindness
by Mudita L.S.Yew
(Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.)
Let us be composed, sit comfortably in an upright posture with a sense of dignity and grace. Gently close your eyes. Allow your body and mind to relax and be at ease. Sit with the intention that for the next half an hour, you'll be cultivating loving-kindness to benefit yourself as well as all other sentient beings.
You'll free your mind from whatever events that have taken place during the day or in the past, or whatever plans you have for the future, just let go of them and dwell in the here and now.
Take a few deep breaths to calm down your mind. Breathing in, you're aware that you're breathing in. Breathing out, you're aware that you're breathing out. After a few breaths, your mind may wander off. This is quite natural and do not resist it or show any resentment. Without sending your mind out to investigate and analysing its content, allow the stray thought to rise and fall on its own. Watch it with clear awareness and then bring back your attention to anchor on your natural breath. In this way, you stabilize mind by freeing it from any mental defilements.
Now visualize your awareness as being a ball of golden light and allow it to gradually sweep over your body, first moving it around the head region, sensing the crown of your head, eyes, ears and jaws, releasing any tension or tightness that is found in these areas. Then gently shift the awareness to the neck region, allow your neck, shoulder, shoulder joints, arms, hands and fingers to relax. Now bring your attention to the chest region. Touch the heart and lungs, the liver, the pancreas, the spleen, the big and small intestines, the abdomen, the productive organ, the pair of kidneys with loving-kindness and wish that they're healthy and strong. Also thank each of the organs for doing a wonderful job for you. Lastly spread your loving-kindness to embrace your spinal cord, pelvis, thighs, legs, knees, feet and the little toes and ensure that they are all relaxed and comfortable. You'll then observe the feeling of softness and relaxation in all the muscles of your body when you've completely let go of all the physical stresses.
Now gently bring your awareness back to rest on the relaxing rhythm of your inward and outward breaths of which you'll come to observe a sense of calm and stillness within you. At this stage the mind feels reasonably settled, clear and alert. Let us now proceed to ask mentally for forgiveness from the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha, our parents, our Dhamma teachers, our relatives and friends for the wrong deeds that we have committed through body, speech and mind consciously and unconsciously. We seek forgiveness from anyone whom we have hurt and also forgive those who have hurt us. We also forgive ourselves for the mistakes made knowingly and unknowingly.
Now let us try to develop this universal friendliness quality in our meditation by inwardly reciting the ancient phrases sincerely from our hearts. Remember that you can adjust the phrases of loving-kindness in whatever way you desire so that they speak from your heart.
Now you send these four wishes of love and kindness to yourself. So putting your awareness around your heart region and visualizing a glow of white light around it, you mentally say, "May my heart be peaceful and free from negative emotions." Repeat it slowly a few times and allow the good feeling to come out from the centre of your heart. Moving to the crown of your head and reflecting a glow at it, you mentally say, "May my mind be happy." Think of your mind as being relaxed and happy." Repeat the wish again and again until it has taken roots. And now being aware of your entire body glowing with good health, you mentally say, "May my body be healthy and strong." Next you bring your awareness to your solar-plexus area, you mentally say, "May I be well and happy." Once again you could say these words at your own pace, first move it around the heart region, you mentally say, "May my heart be peaceful and free.." then to your crown, you mentally say, "May my mind be happy." to the body, you mentally say, "May my body be healthy and strong." and finally to the solar-plexus area, you mentally say, "May I be well and happy." As you mentally recite these ancient phrases of mantra, let this wholesome energy purifies your mind, dispelling your anger, hatred, jealousy, frustration and depression. Then allow yourself to feel the sense of wellness and the spirit of loving-kindness. Also let this good feeling permeate your body and mind.
Now let us start sending thoughts of loving-kindness to our spiritual teachers or any other teachers in our life whom we respect and have gratitude for. Take this moment of time to greet them warmly in our hearts with this unbounded love. So bring to mind these spiritual teachers and dedicate these four great wishes towards them. "May their hearts be peaceful and free. May their mind be ........." As you radiate these loving thoughts to them, you will mentally see them glow with good health and great happiness. In return, they also extend their love to you, wishing you safety, protection, peace of mind, good health and great happiness.
Next spread your loving-kindness to include your loved ones, who could be your parents, your spouse, your children or even your relatives. Pass them these thoughts of universal love and think how grateful you're for all the love, protection and care that you've received since the day you were born. Therefore bring to mind the mental imagines of your aged parents and see them sitting in front of you with a smiling face. So with grateful heart, you mentally dedicate these four wishes to them. At the same time, you would like to extend these warm and sincere wishes to your siblings as well as your relatives and friends, and let them bathe in this wholesome energy of love and protection. And you'll see them in your mind's eye that each of them is happy, radiant with good health and a happy mind.
Keeping your awareness within you, you would want to pass your thoughts of friendliness towards the strangers whom you have met for the first time. Have a good intention in your heart and establish these four great wishes towards them.
As your mind is now saturated with loving-kindness which is free from aversion and bitterness, now spread it to someone who is difficult and problematic to you at work-place, street corners, at home or elsewhere with this unbounded love. Consider that this person wants to be happy and peaceful just like you. Therefore have a good wish for him or her and mentally say, "May your heart be peaceful and free from hatred and grudges. May your mind be happy. May your body be healthy and strong. May you be well and happy."
Spread this loving-kindness to include your neighbours as well.
Finally take this opportunity to embrace all the sentient beings in front of you, behind you, to your right and to left, above you and below you. Deep down in your heart, you mentally say, "May your heart be peaceful and free. May your mind be happy. May your body be healthy and strong. May you be well and happy." At this point, you're identifying yourself with all sentient beings, including the whole world and the universe with a mind full of loving-kindness which is pure and bright, free from irritation and resentment.
Before we end this Metta session, let us mentally share whatever merits that we have accumulated through this Metta meditation and also through our other meritorious acts with the Brahmas and devas. May they rejoice in the merits that we are whole heartedly sharing with them. We would also like to transfer these meritorious deeds to our loved ones, relatives and friends who have passed away. May these merits that we have accumulated be accrued to their well being. We would also like to share these merits with all sentient beings. May they be well and happy sharing these great merits.
The commentary ends here. You may gently open your eyes and be mindful of the surrounding. Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!