Sometimes it's easy to get dragged down by all that's wrong with the world and to lose sight of the goodness and light that can always be found. During these times, loving-kindness meditation can help restore some balance to how we see and experience the world and can invite a deep sense of inner peace and love.
When I first experienced loving-kindness meditation about a year ago, the examples I found started with oneself and then rippled outward with first imagining a loved one and holding that person in one's heart, then imagining an acquaintance and so on outward to imagining, finally, all beings held in compassion, free from pain and sorrow, protected from harm, without difficulties and in peace.
What I find apt about this guided loving-kindness meditation (also embedded below) is that the practitioner, psychologist Elisha Goldstein, begins the meditation with a loved one and then turns in toward the self before rippling further outward. People often find it easier to care for others than to care for ourselves. Focusing first on a loved can help one soften one's heart toward oneself to give oneself deep, heartfelt compassion.
What's your experience with self-compassion? Have you practiced loving-kindness meditation? How do you handle the big troubles of the world? You're invited to share your thoughts on these questions or whatever comes to your mind. Leave a comment here on the blog or on the facebook community page.