YOU CANNOT POST. OUR WEB HOSTING COMPANY DECIDED TO MOVE THE SERVER TO ANOTHER LOCATION. IN THE MEANTIME, YOU CAN VIEW THIS VERSION WHICH DOES NOT ALLOW POSTING AND WILL NOT SAVE ANYTHING YOU DO ONCE THE OTHER SERVER GOES ONLINE.

Metta Journal - Dhamma Wheel

Metta Journal

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Metta Journal

Postby alan » Tue May 17, 2011 3:21 am

Original post didn't resonate. One more try.
Metta comes easily to some lucky souls; for me it requires a focused effort. And I've become convinced that effort is worth while.
So here I'd like to share my efforts and ask others to chip in with advice. How did you establish Metta as a regular part of your daily activity? What are you currently doing to support and grow Metta as a fundamental part of your life?
Last edited by alan on Thu May 19, 2011 1:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Ben
Posts: 18442
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Location: kanamaluka

Re: Metta Journal

Postby Ben » Tue May 17, 2011 8:01 am

All the best with your efforts, Alan!
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Wed May 18, 2011 3:14 am

Day 1 of my journal. Have to eliminate the hindrances. I read several newspapers every morning, and of course focus on the awful conservative politicians who are ruining everything. Often I'll ruminate on their various flaws, logical of psychological. This is not helpful. So today I've decided to cut down on the time spent on non-essentials like newspapers, and instead focus on Metta.

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Thu May 19, 2011 1:24 am

Day 2. Cut down on the papers, but that was just a reduction of volume. Fact of the matter is I'm still easy to anger when I see something that strikes me as stupid or ill-advised. So besides changing focus away from arenas which inevitably showcase frailties, I'll have to look into why I habitually respond in such a way.

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Fri May 20, 2011 2:05 am

Day 3. I'll probably always be intolerant of the world's various ills. But complaining about the state of humanity will not lead to happiness--time to reorient my priorities towards being less critical and more helpful.

Reductor
Posts: 1381
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 6:52 am
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Metta Journal

Postby Reductor » Fri May 20, 2011 5:00 am

Hey Alan. Do you cultivate metta in sitting meditation also?

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Sat May 21, 2011 2:02 am

Hi thereductor,
I've been using "version 2" which has a bit at the beginning. But the main focus of inquiry has been how to apply Metta in daily life.

For day 4 I've decided to find four people a day and complement them. To do this honestly will require a new attitude--less critical, more helpful. This might be a practical approach to help reorient my priorities.

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Sun May 22, 2011 1:41 am

Day 5. Exhausted after a heavy workout. Went overboard. Tried to lift too heavy, didn't allow enough rest in between sets. I need to slow down and lighten the load.
Contentment and appreciation will be my focus today.

Reductor
Posts: 1381
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 6:52 am
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Metta Journal

Postby Reductor » Sun May 22, 2011 2:10 am

Last edited by Reductor on Sun May 22, 2011 2:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Sun May 22, 2011 2:23 am


Method 2, not version 2. Sorry.

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Mon May 23, 2011 1:32 am

Day 6. Focus on Gratitude. So nice when initially felt--so quick to fade. Can it be cultured and kept alive throughout the day?

User avatar
m0rl0ck
Posts: 1160
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2009 10:51 am

Re: Metta Journal

Postby m0rl0ck » Mon May 23, 2011 3:56 am

i used to do metta alot. i use (and still use when i do it) the method in jack kornfields "path with heart". Lately i dont do metta much except for on public transportation. If i catch my self thinking negative thots about my fellow passengers etc i start doing metta for them. if i can catch myself thinking negative thots about anyone (self included) i start doing metta for them.

I noticed some of the patterns in my thinking that you mention above and that notice is, i think, getting sharper and deeper as i continue with it. Tho these days i almost never do it on the cushion, when i did it was pretty blissful for a while. walking around stoned on love is a great way to exist imo :) tough to maintain tho.

i got a chance to do some metta today while edging the lawn, i noticed lots of worms in the ground and i probably cut more than a few into peices, so i did metta for them. then it occured to me that "me" doing metta for "them" was just reinforcing the view of separate self, i got a few giggles out of that, and continued cutting up worms and doing metta anyway.
“The truth knocks on the door and you say, "Go away, I'm looking for the truth," and so it goes away. Puzzling.” ― Robert M. Pirsig

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Mon May 23, 2011 4:18 am

But there is a real difference here, M0rl0k. You have been reborn as a human. You have a separate self.
Sending Metta to worms is not a useful strategy, and believing that there is no difference between you and worms is delusional. Where did you get that--
Oh, wait. You're joking.

User avatar
m0rl0ck
Posts: 1160
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2009 10:51 am

Re: Metta Journal

Postby m0rl0ck » Mon May 23, 2011 4:50 am

Last edited by m0rl0ck on Mon May 23, 2011 4:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
“The truth knocks on the door and you say, "Go away, I'm looking for the truth," and so it goes away. Puzzling.” ― Robert M. Pirsig

Reductor
Posts: 1381
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 6:52 am
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Metta Journal

Postby Reductor » Mon May 23, 2011 4:53 am

I think that sending metta to worms is a great stategy actually. There are few reasons to hate worms, so there are fewer obstacles in feeling metta for them.

I always spare small critters and send them off with a well wish.

Making metta so customary and uninhibited that you can share with a mosquito couldn't be detrimtal to your practice or your health.

Also if you are feeling that these feelings are quick to fade them practice on the seat. Doing that allows you to experiment with different patterns of contemplation to see which yield good results and which do not. Then you can employ different ways of thinking in different circumstances to enable good will.

But do as you see fit.

User avatar
JeffR
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2009 3:54 am
Location: Minnesota, USA

Re: Metta Journal

Postby JeffR » Tue May 24, 2011 3:38 am

Alan,
I too get frustrated with the words and acts of others. What works for me is to have awareness of their suffering, which is the cause of their difficult actions, and have compassion for their suffering. When I am focused on compassion, there is no room for hindrances such as anger and judgment.

Metta is the result of feeling that compassion.

-Jeff :buddha2:

alan
Posts: 2812
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:14 am
Location: Miramar beach, Fl.

Re: Metta Journal

Postby alan » Tue May 24, 2011 4:12 am

Thank you Jeff, for that thoughtful response.
How do you make it work? Awareness of the suffering of others is not sufficient for me. I can arouse compassion from time to time but it is not an overriding emotion. How to make Metta a daily reality?

User avatar
Cittasanto
Posts: 6524
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:31 pm
Location: Ellan Vannin
Contact:

Re: Metta Journal

Postby Cittasanto » Tue May 24, 2011 3:28 pm

there is much merit in this practice!

try to remember that metta isn't dwelling in aversion (as Luang por Sumedho says!) and seeing the good qualities of others aswell as ourselves is helpful for establishing metta, as is remembering to use it in daily life, metta may be simply holding the door for someone when we ourselved are not in the mood!


He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

Justsit
Posts: 460
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 6:41 pm

Re: Metta Journal

Postby Justsit » Tue May 24, 2011 6:01 pm

There are some excellent suggestions for developing compassion . The site has Zen in the title, but don't let that put you off, the teaching is universal and very practical.

:anjali:

rowyourboat
Posts: 1952
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 5:29 pm
Location: London, UK

Re: Metta Journal

Postby rowyourboat » Wed May 25, 2011 4:24 am

Step 1) stop anger/aversion getting out of hand
Step 2) THEN, using methods in the Vitakkasantana sutta, reduce aversion
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
Step 3) do sitting metta/divine abodes meditation
Step 4) using mindfulness when going about, extend it each time you see a human/living being + replace anger-irritability with metta on the fly.

Good qualities always hang in balance with negative qualities. So it is important to remove the opposite negative quality from the mind and remove any other hindrances for the arising of the positive quality (as well as developing other positive supportive quality - like Samadhi for instance).

The right view for controlling anger:- getting angry is NOT an option
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

We HAVE to find something good about the person who is about to make you angry. Can't find the sutta now, but it was as important as a man dying of thirst ignoring the mud in water. :smile:

With metta

Matheesha
With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha


Return to “General Theravāda discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 47 guests

Google Saffron, Theravada Search Engine