What is Metta? – The Practice of Loving-Kindness

what is metta?

Have you ever come across Metta or Loving-Kindness and asked yourself: what is Metta?

Metta is a central concept of Buddhism and present since the very early texts. It refers to a kind of thought that is compassionate and loving towards all beings. This is deeply connected to the Four Noble Truths as layed out by the Buddha (Siddhārtha Gautama). It especially relates to the second Noble Truth that states that the cause of suffering the our craving as well as our perception of being separate from other beings. The practice of Metta bring us closer to others and the whole Universe. Loving-Kindness is also a great tool to ward off stress, worry and anxiety.

However, we need to cultivate this aspect as we don’t automatically have it. The best way to cultivate it is in the form of meditation. Meditating on Metta is not about send out some magical “vibrations”; it a way of cultivating a kind and compassionate mindset. There are several studies that show the benefits of practicing Loving-Kindness, including both physical and metal health benefits.

If you have never meditated before, you might want to start here.

A great way to practice in your daily life is to include Metta meditation in the morning, before you start the day. This allows us to start with a kind mind, especially if we have a job where we have to deal with many people. Starting the day with compassion for ouselves and others will help us extend that compassion during the day.

Another thing I love doing is to include Metta meditation in before or after my Yoga practice, and especially when practicing Yin Yoga. This allows me to be kind to myself during the pratice as well as being kind to others and all things.


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