Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My Thoughts on "Loving Kindness Meditation"

This post in The Art of Zen Living, "Living the Golden Rule, even when you’re furious: My Loving Kindness Meditation" has been on my -ToRead- Google Bookmarks for quite sometime now and I finally have a chance to properly read this article.

I find the concept and practice of meditation very intriguing. Maybe it is common, maybe it is just me, but I know that my mind is totally the wanderer type. I have very little (if any) control over it. Attending the Bikram Yoga classes are one of my many attempts to quiet my mind down (stop worrying about silly things) and it seems to work (well - better than most other attempts). From time to time, I still fail miserably to focus in the class (well - doing a different pose altogether to what the instructor requested is clearly not a sign for being "present" in the class). But, I can recall a handful of classes (out of the 24 classes I've attended the past few months) where my mind was actually fully with me in the class (except for the small wandering it does during the Savasana pose).

When I was reading the Buddhism for Busy People book, I pretty much skipped the meditation chapter. Why? Cause it's like ME trying to kneel on a Pilates ball while doing bicep curls. I've seen other people done it, I admire people who can do it, and I can think of many reasons why it could be useful. But for now, it appears impossible for me to do.

So - back to the article about the Loving Kindness meditation. I'm interested in trying it out. I used to pray before I go to bed (Buddhist cross Catholic style). It was a good way to end the day and soothe my mind before I sleep. Saying grace for the day that I had, wishing happiness and protection for my precious close ones (family, partner, bessies), asking for forgiveness for whatever mistakes I've done and then asking for another good day to come tomorrow. If you think it's silly, hear me out! I started doing this when I was 15-ish. It was when I started having trouble sleeping (I was scared of dying in my sleep cause a family friend passed away while he was sleeping...)

I stopped doing this a couple years ago. I can't remember why. Partially, I wasn't sure who I was talking to. Especially after reading the Buddhism for Busy People and "Eat Pray Love". Those books present an entirely different Buddhism to the one I've been brought up on. Up till now, I still have questions and would love to get guidance on this, but it's not the right time yet. :)

Anyway - I thought the idea of the Loving Kindness Meditation suits me for now. It's similar to what I was doing when I was praying. It's one step towards meditation (despite being a very small step). I want to give this a go and see how it affects my (already much improved) mood and attitude. The next post will be of my version of "Loving Kindness Meditation". :)

Thanks Daniel (the author of the above mentioned post)!

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