We see Buddhist monks that sleep on the floor, eat basic essentials, are celibate, give up all worldly attachment, and shave their heads yet have the most compassionate smile.
Sitting in silence and observing your thoughts can allow the mind to purify itself and return to its nature of compassion. For a monk-like smile try these 5 simple rules for happiness here.
Different Types Of Meditation
From mindfulness meditation, focused meditation, and Metta meditation we are always cultivating compassion through our practice. Mindfulness meditation is a cultivation of expanding self-awareness and commonly sensory perception into a neutral perspective. Find 5 mindfulness exercises for the senses here.
Other meditation forms can take on the techniques of mantra chanting. For compassion use the mantra Karuna Hum which awakens divine love within you. You can use the meditation practice of intentional single gaze focus. When thoughts and emotions come up watch them but remain focused on the mantra.
Return of The Heart
When we watch children it is clear to see how their natural state is compassionate and joyful. As we grow older we are domesticated in some ways to be “more realistic” or we lose our open-hearted nature due to traumas.
Although these layers of domestication, suppressed emotions, or habitual tendencies are able to melt away through a consistent meditation practice. This is because through meditation we clear away attachment and confront fear. Click here to learn how meditation can help break addiction and cyclical habits.
When we return our focus continuously to an object of focus we are clearing out our mental space from habitual tendencies. When we are dedicating ourselves to this space of nothingness in meditation our tendencies to distract ourselves from sitting in silence begin to surface.
By continuing the practice, staying present and observational you are then confronting the fear! Through this purification of the mental body, we begin to come back home to our true self more and more every time.
Just as when we were children out natural state is compassion and joy to be alive. Meditation fills us up with compassion and returns us to our hearts even when we are emptying ourselves.
Loving Kindness Meditation
Around 1500 BCE the Vedas taught, Metta (in language Pali) which translates as loving-kindness. Yoga, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism all stem from the teachings of the Vedas. Although yoga and Buddhism are the most commonly known for their Metta meditations.
The technique behind loving-kindness meditation is slightly different than other types of meditation where the focus is to remain empty and observational towards arising emotions. This particular meditation is about cultivating and focusing on loving-kindness.
The meta consciousness is a state of unconditional divine love to all living beings. Compassion and loving-kindness are viewed to eradicate one of jealousy, anger, hatred, greed, and envy. It increases compassion not only for the existence of external life but your existence as well.
Below is a loving-kindness meditation you can use to experience this meditation technique that builds deep compassion.
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