All of our actions, our entire life experience, arises from the energy of intention. While it’s natural that our intentions are shaped by egoic wants and fears, when we bring this into conscious, compassionate awareness, we can discover the deep aspiration that guides and energizes our awakening hearts and minds. This talk explores the movement from egoic intention to liberating intention…the movement from “my will” to “my heart’s will” (a favorite from the archives).
When we fully inhabit our body, we discover the space and wakefulness of awareness itself. In this meditation, we rest in this open awareness, and when the attention narrows into thoughts, we practice relaxing back into the openness that includes passing sounds, sensations and feelings. We close with a brief offering of lovingkindness to our own hearts and our world (with community OMs – no bell at end).
We begin with metta as heart training, a practice of awakening and growing our heart and explore how our practice of metta can also support and help to transform others. Then we move into obstacles to metta meditation and how to practice with them, covering when metta feels mechanical, distractions, grief, doubt, anger, and struggling to offer metta to ourselves. We close looking at how metta can be a protection and also how the Earth can be a source and inspiration for metta.
Reflections on how the cultivation of Metta is a cornerstone of building equanimity in which the mind is impartial. When we cultivate a mind that can radiate metta to the Stranger and the Enemy with the same wholeheartedness as to the Benefactor and Friend that same quality of mind can meet any experience with ease of heart and balance of mind.