Excerpt taken from the book Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness by Sharon Salzberg
Exercise: Phrases of Loving KindnessThe author goes on to describe each of the four phrases meaning in detail, with some alternate options or you may choose your own 3 or 4 phrases that are significant to you. I choose to coordinate the phrase with my breath, it's easier for me to move from one idea to the next that way but you can do it anyway you like.
In doing metta practice, we gently repeat phrases that are meaningful in terms of what we wish, first for ourselves and then for others. We begin by befriending ourselves. Classically there are four phrases used.
Sit comfortably. You can begin with five minutes of reflection on the good within you or your wish to be happy. Then choose three or four phrases you most deeply wish for yourself, and repeat them over and over again.
- "May I be free from danger"
- "May I have mental happiness"
- "May I have physical happiness"
- "May I have ease of well-being"
Let me know if you try this yourself and what you thought of the exercise :)