Loving-kindness meditation (Mettā Bhāvanā)
The way to cultivate the mind with loving-kindness…
Mettā (Maitri) or loving-kindness is the true friendship that one exercises toward oneself and others. If one is friendly to oneself, that person will not harm himself/herself. If a person is friendly to others, that person would not harm others’ lives. Therefore, the friendship that brings good to oneself and others is called Mettā.
Two ways of cultivating the loving-kindness meditation are mentioned in Anuruddha Sutta in Majjima Nikāya. Arahant Anuruddha Thero has explained those two ways of cultivating the loving-kindness meditation. These two methods are Appamānha Chētō Vimukkti and Mahaggata Chētō Vimukkti.
The way to cultivate Appamānha Chētō Vimukkti…
Appamānha Chētō Vimukkti means spreading loving-kindness direction-wise without any limit. That is, spreading loving-kindness to all ten directions (all beings in ten directions). Ones who like Appamānha Chētō Vimukkti method can remember the following sentences by-heart and practice the loving-kindness meditation.
The Supreme Buddha taught us four dangers of engaging in evil (unwholesome) acts by body, speech and mind. They are the danger of self-accusation, the danger of accusation by others, the danger of punishment, and the danger of being born in a bad destination.
01. One accusing one’s own-self is a serious consequence of engaging in evil acts by body, speech and mind. One may think that none in this world knows the evil acts one has done, thus, may wish no dire consequences; despite that, one’s own-self accuses him or her day and night. One will not be able to eat, carry out routine work, rest and sleep peacefully because one repents internally for the evil acts one has done. When, one who has done evil acts sits in solitude, his or her mind enshrouds with the thoughts of pain and apology. When one hears a group of people discussing an evil act done by another man or women, internally, one starts feeling guilty of one’s own evil acts and accuses one’s own-self. Thus, one who has done evil acts cannot avoid the danger of self-accusation. The Buddha said self-accusation is the first danger of engaging in evil acts by body, speech and mind. Therefore, wise ones, knowing the danger of self-accusation, do not engage in evil acts by body, speech and mind; instead, they engage in wholesome acts by body, speech and mind. Thus, the wise ones avoid the danger of self-accusation; they live in peace.