Metta Meditation

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.

Metta Meditation

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Jan 08, 2009 11:40 pm

what method, or formula do you use?
and for those in the know what are the principle Suttas on this topic?
allot of the methods I have seen seam to be mainly governed by the commentaries, but what is the Buddhas formula for metta meditation?

With Metta
Manapa
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With Metta
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jan 08, 2009 11:56 pm

Greetings Manapa,

Manapa wrote:what method, or formula do you use?


I don't do it very often, but when I do I use (or based it on) Malcolm Huxter's guided MP3 meditation, downloadable at http://www.buddhanet.net/audio-meditation.htm

Manapa wrote:and for those in the know what are the principle Suttas on this topic?


This one is a good start...

[b]Sn 1.8 - Karaniya Metta Sutta[/b
]http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/snp/snp.1.08.budd.html

Manapa wrote:allot of the methods I have seen seam to be mainly governed by the commentaries, but what is the Buddhas formula for metta meditation?


I'm not oft to take commentarial expositions as definitive (I generally see them as 'a view', not 'the view'), but I think Buddhaghosa's instructions in the Visuddhimagga are possibly the best I've seen on the subject.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Jechbi » Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:15 am

Hello Manapa,

In my opinion, metta meditation is fundamental. Unless I feel a great resistance, I try to take the time after every sitting to practice a few moments of metta meditation. If I remember, I try to give metta in those moments when I see anger, hostility, sadness, despair, death.

Here's a translation of the Metta Sutta that I like. I don't have a Web link. This is all from "Daily Buddhist Devotions" by Ven. K Sri Dhammananda.

Metta Sutta

He who is skilled in doing good and
who wishes to attain that state of calm
should act thus.
He should be able, upright, perfectly upright,
obedient, gentle and humble.

Contented, easily looked after,
with few duties, simple in livelihood.
Controled in senses, discreet, not impudent;
Not greedily attached to families.

He should not commit any slight wrong,
so that other wise men might find fault in him.
May all beings be happy and safe,
may their hearts be wholesome.

Whatsoever living beings there are;
feeble or strong, long, stout or medium,
short, small or large, seen or unseen.

Those dwelling far or near,
those who are born and those
who are to be born.
May all beings, without exception,
be happy minded.

Let not one deceive another nor despise any
person whatsoever in any place.
In anger or ill-will,
let him not wish any harm to another.

Just as a mother would protect her
only child at the risk of her own life,
even so let him cultivate a boundless heart
towards all beings.

Let thoughts of boundless love pervade the
whole world; above, below and across
without any obstruction,
without any hatred, without any enmity.

Whether he stands, walks, sits or lies down,
as long as he is awake,
he should develop this mindfulness.
This, they say is the Highest conduct here.

Not falling into error,
virtuous and endowed with insight,
he discards attachment to sensuous desires.
Truly, he does not come again;
to be conceived in the womb.

Buy the firm determination of this truth
May I ever be well.


Sometimes people begin metta meditation with oneself, then expand it to a loved one, then to a stranger, then to an adversary, then to all beings. I send metta to my teacher, to my family members, and to those with whom I have been in conflict that day. I sometimes choose random people for metta meditation.

I have read that the Buddha taught that regular metta meditation has these results:
-Peaceful sleep.
-Peaceful awakening.
-Disturbing dreams do not occur.
-Pleasing to ther people.
-Free from the disturbances of evil spirits.
-Protected by devas.
-Not affected by misfortune from fire, poison and weapons.
-Gain concentration quickly.
-Pleasant in appearance.
-Dies with a mind free from confusion.
-If the stage of sainthood is not reached during this lifetime, one will be born in a Brahma world.

Mettanussati

Having compared oneself with others,
one should practice loving-kindness
toward all beings by realising that
everyone desires happiness.

May I be free from sorrow and
always be happy.
May those who desire my welfare,
those who are indifferent towards me and
those who hate me, also be happy.

May all beings who live in this vicinity and
those who live in other kingdoms in this
world-system be happy.

May all beings living in every world-system
and each element of life within such a system
be happy and achieve the highest bliss.

Likewise, women, men, the noble and the
ignoble ones, gods, men and those in woeful
states and those living in the ten directions --
may all these beings be happy.


Metta
:)
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But never soddens what is open;
Uncover, then, what is concealed,
Lest it be soddened by the rain.
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby gavesako » Fri Jan 09, 2009 7:15 am

Sometimes just "tuning into" a mental state based on Metta can help. These audio-visual tools can be quite helpful, for example:

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Kk_152Pgy ... re=related
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:28 am

gavesako wrote:Sometimes just "tuning into" a mental state based on Metta can help. These audio-visual tools can be quite helpful, for example:

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Kk_152Pgy ... re=related


I have seen that or a similare one by another before, I am not a fan of the music though, I don't see the point in it as I don't understand the words!

My favourite rendering of the Karaniya Metta Sutta on mp3 format is by Thanissero as it is a reading more than a chant or song although I do enjoy Amaravati/BSWA (cant remember which it is) MP3 rendering which is group chanting in english
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:33 am

retrofuturist wrote:
Manapa wrote:allot of the methods I have seen seam to be mainly governed by the commentaries, but what is the Buddhas formula for metta meditation?


I'm not oft to take commentarial expositions as definitive (I generally see them as 'a view', not 'the view'), but I think Buddhaghosa's instructions in the Visuddhimagga are possibly the best I've seen on the subject.

Metta,
Retro. :)


I agree here the Commentaries are views which may or may not be accurate to the original rendering which is something I expressed in another thread with Dhammanando, and in some ways in my signature, regarding my own posts.

I have the mp3 and quite often listen or read the Karaniya Metta Sutta, but am wondering if there are more than the three or four suttas I know of, all of which have been mentioned here to one extent or another!
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Dhammanando » Fri Jan 09, 2009 10:42 am

Hi Manapa,

Manapa wrote:but am wondering if there are more than the three or four suttas I know of, all of which have been mentioned here to one extent or another!


Yes, there are more than just those. Have you read the metta anthologies of Nyanaponika and Buddharakkhita at ATI?

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu
    ...and this thought arose in the mind of the Blessed One:
    “Who lives without reverence lives miserably.”
    Uruvela Sutta, A.ii.20

    It were endless to dispute upon everything that is disputable.
    — William Penn Some Fruits of Solitude,
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Jechbi » Fri Jan 09, 2009 4:49 pm

gavesako wrote:Sometimes just "tuning into" a mental state based on Metta can help. These audio-visual tools can be quite helpful, for example:

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Kk_152Pgy ... re=related

Thank you for sharing that link, Bhante.
Rain soddens what is kept wrapped up,
But never soddens what is open;
Uncover, then, what is concealed,
Lest it be soddened by the rain.
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:37 pm

Dhammanando wrote:Hi Manapa,

Manapa wrote:but am wondering if there are more than the three or four suttas I know of, all of which have been mentioned here to one extent or another!


Yes, there are more than just those. Have you read the metta anthologies of Nyanaponika and Buddharakkhita at ATI?

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu


Where abouts are they? in the study section maybe, don't really bother with that section mainly focus on the suttas or books by Ajahn Chah!
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Dhammanando » Sat Jan 10, 2009 2:49 pm

Hi Manapa,

Manapa wrote:Where abouts are they? in the study section maybe, don't really bother with that section mainly focus on the suttas or books by Ajahn Chah!


Actually I misremembered. It’s Ñāṇamoli’s booklet that’s a Sutta anthology:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el007.html

The other two are are the authors' personal reflections.

Buddharakkhita, Metta:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el365.html
Nyanaponika, The Four Sublime States:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el006.html


Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu
    ...and this thought arose in the mind of the Blessed One:
    “Who lives without reverence lives miserably.”
    Uruvela Sutta, A.ii.20

    It were endless to dispute upon everything that is disputable.
    — William Penn Some Fruits of Solitude,
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Dhammakid » Sat Jan 10, 2009 6:41 pm

(Awesome! More smileys! :thumbsup: :jedi: :jawdrop: :clap: :rules: :rofl: :thanks: )

This is a good thread and I appreciate all of the links and resources. I definitely need to practice more Metta meditation because there are few people in my past experiences I have been harboring negative feelings towards. I'll take a look at the suttas and download the Huxter link Retro mentioned.

Thanks for everyone's help!

:namaste: ,
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Dhammakid » Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:24 pm

Jechbi wrote:Mettanussati

Having compared oneself with others,
one should practice loving-kindness
toward all beings by realising that
everyone desires happiness.

May I be free from sorrow and
always be happy.
May those who desire my welfare,
those who are indifferent towards me and
those who hate me, also be happy.

May all beings who live in this vicinity and
those who live in other kingdoms in this
world-system be happy.

May all beings living in every world-system
and each element of life within such a system
be happy and achieve the highest bliss.

Likewise, women, men, the noble and the
ignoble ones, gods, men and those in woeful
states and those living in the ten directions --
may all these beings be happy.


Thanks for this, Jechbi. Can I ask what sutta this is from?
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby cooran » Sat Jan 10, 2009 10:04 pm

Hello all,

This beautiful audio-visual of the Metta sutta chant in Pali with English sub-titles may be of interest:
by Imee Ooii
http://ambrosiagarden.com/alt/Metta1.swf

metta
Chris
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Jan 10, 2009 10:39 pm

Hi Dhammanando,


Dhammanando wrote:Hi Manapa,

Manapa wrote:Where abouts are they? in the study section maybe, don't really bother with that section mainly focus on the suttas or books by Ajahn Chah!


Actually I misremembered. It’s Ñāṇamoli’s booklet that’s a Sutta anthology:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el007.html

The other two are are the authors' personal reflections.

Buddharakkhita, Metta:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el365.html
Nyanaponika, The Four Sublime States:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el006.html


Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu


I found the "misquote" last night and the new one this morning just didn't have time to post links to see if it was the ones you were thinking off, thank-you.
I had a quick glance over them and it has changed my thoughts on how the Buddha Taught Metta and what is taught nowadays. as mentioned I believed these where solely or predominantly derived from the Commentaries!
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Jan 10, 2009 10:43 pm

here is the guided meditation transcripted I have used in the past.

Michael Kewley AKA Dhammachariya Pannadipa wrote:Loving Kindness Meditation
And so now we can begin our Loving Kindness practice, and if you need to change your posture, please do so now.
We begin by taking our awareness to the top of the head, and lightly passing it down through the body, and just being aware of any sensations or impressions or feelings the body may offer to us, but not analysing, not judging, not commenting on, but simply being aware. Just noticing in each moment, and then continuing to pass our awareness down through the body. (Sit silently in meditation for about 1 minute)
And so, having established a sense of self, we can use this to first of all direct our feelings of Loving Kindness towards, and then later outwards from, so as always remembering to empower these phrases and suggestions. We begin by offering love to ourselves.
May I be free from anger and ill will
May I be free from fear and anxiety
May I be free from suffering and pain
May I be free from ignorance and desire
May I be happy and peaceful
May I be harmonious
May I be liberated from greed, hatred and delusion
May I realise the deeper peace within
So now we can just sit for a moment and experience these feelings of loving kindness and compassion, directed towards ourselves. (Sit silently in meditation for about 1 minute.)
And so now we can begin to radiate these feelings outwards from our heart, from our centre, into the world and the universe, touching all beings equally and without exception.
May all beings be free from anger and ill will
May all beings be free from fear and anxiety
May all beings be free from all suffering and all pain
May all beings be free from ignorance and desire
May all beings be happy and peaceful
May all beings be harmonious
May all beings be liberated from greed, hatred and delusion
May all beings realise the deeper peace within
So again we can just sit for a moment and experience these feelings of loving kindness and compassion, radiating outwards from our heart into the world and the universe, touching all beings equally and without exception. (Sit silently in meditation for about 1 minute)
And so, finally, we can recollect particular beings in our lives and offer our loving kindness towards them. Beginning with our parents, and then our spiritual teachers, our immediate family, friends, relatives and acquaintances, and finally beings that we may not like very much or have some difficulty with, but to all these beings equally, we offer our loving kindness. May they all be well and happy and may they all live in peace. (Sit silently in meditation for about 1 minute.)
May all beings be happy and secure, may their hearts be wholesome. Whatever living beings they may be, whether feeble or strong, tall, stout or medium, long, short or small, seen or unseen, those dwelling far or near, those who are born and those who are to be born, may all beings without exception be happy.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Jechbi » Sun Jan 11, 2009 3:09 am

Hello Dhammakid,
Dhammakid wrote:Thanks for this, Jechbi. Can I ask what sutta this is from?

I grabbed it out of "Daily Buddhist Devotions" by Ven. K Sri Dhammananda. When I'm home I'll take a look to see if the book has any citation for it.

Metta
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But never soddens what is open;
Uncover, then, what is concealed,
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Dhammakid » Sun Jan 11, 2009 3:59 am

Jechbi wrote:Hello Dhammakid,
Dhammakid wrote:Thanks for this, Jechbi. Can I ask what sutta this is from?

I grabbed it out of "Daily Buddhist Devotions" by Ven. K Sri Dhammananda. When I'm home I'll take a look to see if the book has any citation for it.

Metta
:smile:


Okay thanks, I appreciate it.

:namaste:
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Dhammakid » Sun Jan 11, 2009 4:18 am

So how often does everyone here practice their metta meditation? I've recently added it to my daily practice routine.

I found a great two-part guided metta meditation on iTunes by Lisa Dale Miller, MFT (Marriage and Family Therapist, specializing in MBPT - Mindfulness Based Psycho-Therapy). It's a free podcast totaling a bit over 45 minutes. Yeah, that's long, but I think I need it :|

I like her podcast because she sounds happy and upbeat which positively affects my mood and thus my meditation session.

:namaste:
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Jechbi » Sun Jan 11, 2009 5:55 am

Hello Dhammakid,
Dhammakid wrote:
Jechbi wrote:Mettanussati

Having compared oneself with others,
one should practice loving-kindness
toward all beings by realising that
everyone desires happiness.

May I be free from sorrow and
always be happy.
May those who desire my welfare,
those who are indifferent towards me and
those who hate me, also be happy.

May all beings who live in this vicinity and
those who live in other kingdoms in this
world-system be happy.

May all beings living in every world-system
and each element of life within such a system
be happy and achieve the highest bliss.

Likewise, women, men, the noble and the
ignoble ones, gods, men and those in woeful
states and those living in the ten directions --
may all these beings be happy.


Thanks for this, Jechbi. Can I ask what sutta this is from?

The book doesn't offer any citation, and now I think it's probably a traditional prayer rather than drawn from a sutta. Maybe someone else here can answer?

In any case, the book provides the same Mettanussati in Pali, along with the English translation above. This Web site appears to have the same thing in Pali (and French):
METTA BHAVANA

1. Attupamaya sabbesam
sattanam sukhakamatam
passitva kamato mettam
sabbasattesu bhavaye

2. Sukhi bhaveyyam nidukkho
aham niccam aham viya
Hita ca me sukhi hontu
majjhatthaca'tha verino

3. Imamhi gamakkhettamhi
satta hontu sukhi sada Tato
param ca rajjesu
cakkavalesu jantuno

4. Samanta cakkavalesu
sattanantesu panunam sukhino puggala bhuta attabhavagata siyum

5. Tatha itthi puma ce'va ariya anariya'pi ca Deva nara apayattha tatha dasa disasu ca'ti.

Aham avero homi, abyapajjo homi, anigho homi, sukhi attanam pariharami. Aham viya mayham acariyupajjhaya matapitaro hitasatta majjahattika satta veri satta avera hontu, abyapajja hontu, anigha hontu, sukhi attanam pariharantu dukkha muncatu yatha laddha sampattito mavigacchantu kammassaka.

Imasmim vihare, imasmim gocaragame, imasmim nagare, imasmim ratthe, imasmim cakkavale, issarajana simatthakadevata, sabbe satta, sabbe pana, sabbe bhuta, sabbe puggala, sabbe attabhava pariyapanna, sabba itthiyo, sabbe purisa, sabbe ariya, sabbe anariya, sabbe deva, sabbe manussa, sabbe amanussa, sabbe vinipatika, avera hontu, abyapajja hontu, anigha hontu, sukhi attanam, pariharantu, dukkha muncantu, yatha laddha sampattito mavigacchantu, kammassaka.


It also can be found here with a slightly different English translation.

Metta
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Uncover, then, what is concealed,
Lest it be soddened by the rain.
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Re: Metta Meditation

Postby Dhammakid » Sun Jan 11, 2009 5:16 pm

Thanks Jechbi, that's very helpful. Whether or not it comes from a sutta, it's still beautiful and useful. I think I might use from time to time.

:namaste:
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