Karaniya Metta Sutta

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Re: Karaniya Metta Sutta

Postby BlackBird » Wed Sep 01, 2010 1:16 am

David N. Snyder wrote:I know that sometimes we Theravadins say that metta cannot be extended to the dead


IIRC it is stated in the Visuddhimagga that one seeking to develop the sign (nimitta) of metta as a samatha meditation object should not direct one's efforts towards the dead for it is impossible to develop the sign when visualizing the face of someone who is dead. It then gives a fairly stock example of Bhikkhu X attempting metta towards his master who unbeknown to Bhikkhu x is now dead, Bhikkhu X then visualizes his preceptor or someone and attains the sign.

That's the only source I've come across regarding this notion, and as I do not take the Visuddhimagga as the bottom line on things, I am inclined to believe that metta meditation towards those who have already passed is still a fruitful exercise (Not that to my recollection the Visuddhimagga ever excludes this possibility anyway).

But that's just me.
Last edited by BlackBird on Wed Sep 01, 2010 2:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta
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Re: Karaniya Metta Sutta

Postby plwk » Wed Sep 01, 2010 2:34 am

Bhikkhus, if you develop and make much this one thing,
it invariably leads to weariness, cessation, appeasement, realization and extinction.
What is it? It is recollecting the Enlightened One.
If this single thing is recollected and made much,
it invariably leads to weariness, cessation, appeasement, realization and extinction.

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