Metta Bhavana Cultivation of Lovingkindness

The good symbol for Metta (loving-kindness) is the mother cradling her baby to sleep. The baby cradled to sleep will be the result. I can still remember that it was a good feeling when I was cradled to sleep by my mother. There is also a lot of joy when one is unselfishly caring for a friend. Such is loving-kindness and its results. In the texts, metta is characterised by promoting the aspect of welfare. Amity, goodwill, friendliness and loving-kindness are some of the words used to describe...

Karaniya Metta Sutta

Karaniyam atthakusalena Yam tam santam Sakko Uju ca Suju ca Suvaco C'assa mudu Anatimani Santussako ca Subharo ca Appakicco ca Sallahukavutti Santindriyo ca Nipako ca Appagabbho Kulesu ananugiddho samacare kinci Yena vinnu pare Upavadeyyum Sukhino va khemino hontu Sabbe satta bhavantu sukhitata Ye keci pana bhutatthi Tasa va Thavara va Anavasesa Digha va ye Mahanta va Majjhima Rassakanukathula Ye ca dure vasanti avidure Bhuta va sambhavesi va Sabbe satta bhavantu sukhitatta Na paro param...

Samatha Bhavana Cultivation of Tranquillity

Metta bhavana is one of the 40 themes for samatha bhavana listed in the Path of Purification (Visuddhimagga). That is, the cultivation of loving-kindness is one way by which we can attain tranquillity. I. firstly, to tranquillity freed of defilements. Truly the defilements of greed, hatred, delusion, jealousy, etc. are torturous and disturbing to the mind. The mind purified of these can truly be said to be peaceful. II. secondly, to unification with or concentration of the mind on its object....

Khandha Parittam

Virupakkehi me mettam mettam erapathehi me chabyaputtehi me mettam mettam kanhagotamakehi ca 2. apadakehi me mettam mettam dipadakehi me catupadehi me mettam mettam bahupadehi me S. ma mam apadako himsi ma mam himsi dipadako ma mam catuppado himsi ma mam himsi bahuppado 4. sabbe satta sabbe pana sabbe bhuta ca kevala sabbe bhadrani passantu ma kinci papamagama 5. appamano buddho appamano dhammo appamano sangho pamanavantani sirimsapani ahi vicchika

Five Hindrances to Concentration Absorption

Before the metta is continuous, the five hindrances may arise to hinder the progress. Sensual desire arises commonly with an attractive object. This is one reason why we do not choose the extremely intimate person as the first object and also, based on the same reason, why we avoid one of the opposite sex. Even when giving metta to the good friend, you should avoid thinking of sensual moments (e.g. sightseeing etc.). Calmness and joy that arise abundantly in this meditation should also not be...

Three Types of Concentration

There are three types of concentration that come with metta bhavana 1. parikamma samadhi - preliminary concentration 2. upacara samadhi - access concentration 3. appana samadhi - fixed concentration Parikamma bhavana is the stage of doing the preliminary exercises. Some degree of one-pointedness or calmness is reached when radiating metta to the person as one is involved with active recitations. When it comes very close as if about to sink or merge with the object we may consider it as access...

Ways of bringing about Concentration

I have noticed that concentration can be brought about in a number of ways. These below are a few of them. 1. Following closely and concentrating into the object this is the normal procedure used by beginners in developing concentration. The important point here is that I. It has to be done with mindfulness. II. In metta bhavana, it has to have metta. Then we shut out all other objects - e.g. forms and sounds, and keep the mind onto the object and nothing else. 2. Recalling the states of mind...

Five Jhana Factors of Concentration Absorption

In the initial stage, the main part is played by the first jhanic factor - initial application of mind (vitakka), the mental factor that lifts the mind and mental states to its object. In metta bhavana, it is the continuous bringing up of metta consciousness to its object - the person selected. So when metta keeps flowing up we always make sure that we have the same person in mind. This part is concentration. Very often the mind will flit to other persons and if so, we can just let the metta...

Metta and Vipassana

If one wants to be totally free from all suffering, one will have to practise vipassana - insight meditation. This is because the objects of brahma vihara have beings, a concept, as their object. To gain wisdom that reaches beyond birth and death one has to see into things as they really are, i.e. realities. But if one has developed metta or other brahma vihara then one stands at an advantage. The mind can concentrate easily. Once the mind is calm, one can emerge to do the work of mindful...

Metta and Other Brahma Vihara

Metta is one of the four brahma vihara. Brahma, in this case, has been translated as divine or noble. The word - as qualified in the path of purification - is meant in the sense of best and immaculate. This is because being best and immaculate is the best attitude towards beings, and those who practise it have immaculate minds like those of the Brahma gods. Vihara means abiding and living. And so, those who practise these are said to be abiding or living in the divine or noble way. These four...

Beginning Practice of Loving Kindness

There is no one posture in which you cannot send thoughts of metta. In intensive metta exercises, one radiates loving-kindness all the time in whatever position one is in - standing, walking, sitting and (if not sleepy) lying down. Usually sitting is alternated with walking. Gradually the sitting is lengthened. When radiating metta while walking one does not really pay attention to the sensations or phenomena involved with the process of walking meditation as in vipassana. One just radiates as...

Factors in Developing Deep Concentration

The ability of bringing up the meditation object of concentration to the point of access concentration just before absorption involves the building up of the mental factors of concentration skilfully so that it becomes powerful enough to fall into absorption. Some important factors in development of deep concentration are given here Mindfulness being the main controlling faculty of the mind is of course indispensable. It brings the mind to the point of concentration skilfully. Besides it guards...

Universal Metta to All Beings

Unspecified pervasion (anodhiso pharana) II. Specified pervasion (odhiso pharana) Unspecified Pervasion In the texts the unspecified pervasion of metta is metta given to beings not of any specified types. They are all beings (sentient beings with feelings) all living things (beings that breathe and live) all creatures (beings that arise owing to their kamma) all individuals (beings seen as individuals) 5. sabbe attabhavapariyapanna - all personalities (beings with personalities) These five...

Change in the Object of Metta

One may then proceed with a change of the object, i.e. the individual used as object of metta. This approach of keeping to one person till the mastering of absorption allows one who practises metta bhavana to develop deep concentration. In usual practice, however, one may not go so far. Often one switches objects even on reaching access concentration. Some switch even before that but it is inadvisable, as one is still within the power of the defilements and so does not produce appreciable...