top of page

Holiday Metta

There's a week left in 2018. I would like to acknowledge the meeting of two years by practicing metta daily until New Year's. I've invited a few of my Buddha friends to join this practice. Then, a friend said, "The more metta, the betta." So, I thought, why not broadcast it here?

For the next week, after every metta practice, I will post a short update on IG stories. Follow me @bagel20.

For those unfamiliar with the metta practice, here's a short intro:

Metta is the Pali word for Lovingkindness - a quality of love that is wise, unconditional, and transcendental. While reading this definition may help you understand the word conceptually, the felt experience of metta, through sitting with an intention in quietude, may bring you to a deeper level of understanding that words cannot capture. If you find yourself confused, don't worry too much about meaning the word. Just try the practice, and notice how you feel.


Find a comfortable position. You can be sitting cross-legged, on a chair, or kneel on a small bench. Take a few deep breathes to settle in. Bring your focus to your heart center. Notice the gentle rise and fall of your chest. Stay with this sensation. If you find your mind drifting elsewhere, gently bring it back, again and again.

Allow your breathing to go in and out naturally. Think or say to yourself -

May I be happy.

May I be loved.

May I be free from suffering.

Say this a few times. Notice what is happening to your body. Be open and curious about this experience.

Now, bring to mind a friend or a family member. Someone with whom you share a positive relationship. Bring not just the image of the person, but also the experience of being with this person. Really invite the feeling of being with this person into your heart. And now, think or say to this person -

May you be happy.

May you be loved.

May you be free from suffering.

Say this a few times. Again, observe what arises from the experience of offering metta to this person whom you love. Feel into your body. Listen to your breath.

Now, think of a person that is neutral to you. It can be the mailman who delivers your mail. Or it can be the cashier that you said at the store today. Feel this person's presence in your body. Think or say to this person -

May you be happy.

May you be loved.

May you be free from suffering.

Say this a few times. Once again, get in touch with the changes in your body. Is there softness? Hardness? Openness? Tightness?

After a few moments, bring these three people to your mind - yourself, your loved one, and the neutral person. Say to all of them -

May you all be happy.

May you all be loved.

May you all be free from suffering.

Breathe in and out, in and out. Let the fluidity of metta move through you, radiating from your heart to the people around you.


I have been doing this practice sporadically and will be doing this exercise everyday for the next week. In my version at home, I add two more parts, where I send metta to a person with whom I share a negative past, and to all beings in the universe. If this is the first time of your metta practice, you may find it easier to start with the 3 people I suggested above.

May you be strong and healthy of the body.

May you be soft and kind of the heart.

May you live with joy and ease.

Happy Holidays.

bottom of page