This introduction to a week of lovingkindness practice presents metta as a specific subset of mindfulness practice: paying attention to the presence or absence of good will in the mind. It includes an explanation of how the practice of continual blessing, “praying without ceasing” cultivates concentration of the mind. Concentration is presented as the antidote to all afflictive energies and the ground out of which our natural good will manifests.
The Buddha taught of three archetypal domains in which we awaken presence and realize freedom. In contrast to our habitual false refuges, these gateways of true refuge are dependable because they express the timeless truth of what we are. This talk shines a light on false refuges, guides us in exploring the meaning of each of the three Buddhist refuges and ends in a ritual of "taking refuge."
A reflection on the ten paramis: generosity, non-harming, renunciation, effort, patience, truthfulness, equanimity, resolve, wisdom, loving kindness and the noble aspiration to develop them in the service of all beings.