International Lifestyle Magazine Issue 51 - Page 100

So, how else, you may ask, is this idea of compassion relevant to my daily life? In what other ways can it be practiced here and now? Here are a few more simple suggestions: At the end of each day (or first thing in the morning), sitting or lying down, close your eyes, be comfortable, and start b y sending feelings of love & kindness to yourself. It may help to visualise yourself and simply repeat these words in your mind: “may I be happy, may I be peaceful, may I be free from suffering”. You may like to visualise the ‘loving-kindness’ you send as bright white or golden light surrounding yourself, entering into you. Then follow that up by sending loving-kindness to your friends and family, visualising each in turn, with bright light coming from your heart centre, reaching them one by one. Continue by sending positive feelings of love to people that you have hurt (intentionally or unintentionally) that day, and to those who have hurt you, repeating the phrase “may you be happy, may you be peaceful, may you be free from suffering”. You can end by sending loving-kindness to the whole wide world and all the beings in it. So, there it is, a very simple karma cleanse. You can think of it like a daily detox for the heart, if you like. Of course as you start to do this simple little practice, you may find that it’s not that easy. Perhaps you find yourself feeling anger or other negative feelings towards the people who have hurt you or even towards yourself, but that’s totally ok, absolutely fine! If this happens to you, then just watch whatever feelings do arise and give yourself and those negative feelings a huge dose of lovingkindness too. Even negativity needs love. In this way, this very simple practice done just for a few minutes everyday, over time, helps us to remember our true purpose in life, enables us to open our hearts, and aligns us with all that is positive, beautiful & perfect in this world. And then, every now and again, don’t forget to spend a little time just listening silently to your heart, especially after practicing loving-kindness. Perhaps there’s an important message waiting for you there. After all, “a compassionate heart” says Kuan Yin ”is the beginning of all wisdom.”