Loving-kindness, or metta, is sometimes depicted as a simple “open your heart and love everybody” practice, but a closer look at the Buddha’s teachings reveals a more complex and nuanced picture. In a time of great conflict and contention in our society, it can be valuable to instead look at how the Buddha addressed living kindness.
Several early Buddhist suttas illuminate these topics:
Practicing non-ill-will toward difficult people
Acting with integrity, morality, and ethics
Living a harmonious homelife
Letting go of grief
Developing mindfulness and concentration through metta practice