Last week I issued a challenge asking you to do a chanting and meditation practice for five days by Sunday November 9 at 11:59 p.m. That means Wednesday (which for me, the night owl, is tomorrow since I’m still having Tuesday right now) is the last day to begin if you want to complete it. If you want to send me 300 words or less about your experience I’ll compile all responses into a post (with links to participants of course).
- Sit or lie comfortably with a straight back and close your eyes
- Think of someone with whom you have a challenging relationship or whom you don’t like or whom you consider an enemy
- Say the lovingkindness chant for that person for 10 minutes
- Take a few deep, even breaths, each inhalation and exhalation taking the same amount of time (i.e. count 10 on inhale, count 10 on exhale)
- Begin imagining that you’re inhaling into your heart and exhaling from your heart
- Place one hand on your heart to focus more energy there; you can put it down when you feel you’ve moved into heart space but keep some attention on staying in heart
- Ask to see what you can do to create harmony with that person
- From heart space, what do you understand about this relationship; what does your heart feel about this person?
- When you feel complete, open your eyes
- As you move through normal life focus whenever you think of it on heart space and hold the vision of this harmonious relationship
- Note any shifts you feel toward this person or about this relationship as the five days progress
The version of the lovingkindness chant I use is very short and I vary whether I say it in the traditional prayer form:
May I (or who- or what- ever you are saying it for) be filled with lovingkindness, may I be well, may I be peaceful and at ease may I be happy.
or as an affirmation:
I am filled with lovingkindness, I am well, I am peaceful and at ease, I am happy.
Pay attention to whether you feel complete after you’ve done it once or twice. Note whether the experience remains the same from one time to the next or whether it deepens each day. Does the answer change as you continue or does the first answer turn out to be the only one you get? Sometimes I find that repetition helps me go deeper. Sometimes it doesn’t change. No right outcome, just notice how it works for you.