But when it comes to us human beings, we often put on layers of protection to keep ourselves safe, but as time goes on, we forget our innate golden nature. Love and kindness are natural ways of being for us all.

Story of the Golden Buddha

“Story of the Golden Buddha” is inspired by events surrounding the discovery of the world’s biggest solid gold statue, although very loosely based on the actual events.

golden buddha

In the mid-20th century, there was a flourishing monastery in northern Thailand. There were many statues of Buddha there, and one of them was quite big and made of clay. Even though it wasn’t the most spectacular sculpture, the monks loved it since it had been a part of the monastery for decades. One day monks noticed that the statue had developed cracks. It happened during the heat wave right after the rain season.

Curious, one monk pulled out a flashlight and peered through the crack in the clay. A sparkling reflection took him by surprise. So he gathered the other monks, and they cautiously widened the crack. And as they cleared out twelve inches, they were astounded to discover a stunning solid gold Buddha statue.

You see, in the 13th and 14th centuries, to keep the golden Buddha statue safe from raiding tribes, the monks covered it in thick layers of clay. As time passed, the Buddha’s golden center was forgotten, and through generations, everyone thought that it was just a humble clay statue. Nowadays, millions of worshippers go to the temple in Bangkok to see this spectacular golden statue.

But when it comes to us human beings, we often put on layers of protection to keep ourselves safe, but as time goes on, we forget our innate golden nature. Love and kindness are natural ways of being for us all.

golden buddha

Metta or Loving-Kindness

Loving-kindness, also known as metta in the Pali language, is a foundational practice taught by the Buddha. It is part of a group of four practices known as the “divine abodes”: lovingkindness, compassion, sympathetic joy, and equanimity.

During Metta meditation, the practitioner cultivates feelings of love, kindness, and compassion towards themselves and others. The goal of Metta meditation is to develop a warm and benevolent state of mind towards all beings, regardless of their actions or circumstances. This style of meditation is intended to improve inner peace, reduce feelings of anger and hatred, and foster an overall sense of well-being.

These practices are all forms of meditation that are used to cultivate Samadhi, or focused attention, from which the powers of the evoked qualities can emerge and transform the heart. But the essence of all of these can be found within mindfulness practices. Even just acknowledging these qualities and making them explicit in our practice can help us to recognize them during mindfulness and incline our hearts and minds towards them, especially during difficult times.

During Metta meditation, people usually say the Metta affirmation, which helps them feel more love, kindness, and compassion.

Here is a common version of the Metta affirmations:

May all beings be safe.
May all beings be healthy.
May all beings be happy.
May all beings live with ease.
May I be safe.
May I be healthy.
May I be happy.
May I live with ease.

The affirmation can be modified and personalized according to individual preferences and spiritual beliefs. The important aspect of the Metta is the intention to extend loving-kindness and compassion to all beings, including oneself, loved ones, neutral persons, and even those who may cause harm.

My First Experience Practicing Metta (Loving-Kindness)

When I first repeated the Metta affirmation daily for two weeks, I felt it was a powerful way to cultivate feelings of compassion and kindness towards myself and others. It was helpful to focus on each line’s meaning and allow myself to feel the intention behind the words. As I repeated the affirmation over time, I noticed shifts in my feelings of compassion and connectedness to others. I felt more open and understanding toward others and more able to offer them care and support.

The practice brought up some difficult emotions, and I allowed myself to feel and process these compassionately. I think it is important to approach the practice with an open and curious mindset and to be patient with yourself as you explore the effects of the Metta practice.

❁ Metta Meditations ❁

Be Alive 🌱
Love ❤️, Julia


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