EPISODE 19

The LOVING-KINDNESS Meditation






Loving-Kindness practice dates back approximately 2,500 years.

In this meditation Travis Eliot gently guides you through various stages of spreading compassion using images, feelings and the repetition of loving phrases.

With an open heart, we experience more joy and a meaningful connection with ourselves and others.

Hope you enjoy!

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FULL TRANSCRIPT

[The following is the full transcript of this episode of “The Be Ultimate Podcast.” Please note that this is direct from Travis speaking unscripted and unedited.]

Welcome to The LOVING-KINDESS Meditation.

Mark Twain said, “Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” 

In this practice, we’ll cultivate this energy of kindness and compassion.

Let’s begin. Find a comfortable seat. 

Allow your spine to be tall like a staff of bamboo, upright but also relaxed in the quality of effortlessness within your body, within your mind as you close the eyes.

We’ll begin our loving-kindness meditation by first calling within our mind an image of a loved one, somebody that represents good vibes and good energy, support within your life. Perhaps a loved one, a family member, a friend or even a teacher that’s been a guiding force within your life and within your path. 

And as you hold this image of this loved one within your mind, see this person as clearly and as detailed as you can. And then continuing to hold this image, silently began to repeat the following three phrases. 

May you be safe. 

May you be healthy. 

And may you be at peace. 

On your own just continuing to repeat as you offer this compassion and this kindness from the very depths of your heart.

[silence]

As you continue to offer up these phrases, it’s possible that sometimes we feel resistance or we feel a lack of sincerity or doubt. And if this is your experience at any point, it’s actually very normal. But just continuing to stay with the phrases, coming back to the repetition of the practice. 

May you be safe. 

May you be healthy. 

And may you be at peace.

[silence]

From here, allow the phrases to fade away momentarily. 

And then now for the next stage of this meditation, imagine that you are inside of this person that you just repeated your phrases towards. And as you sit inside of this person, now beginning to look out through their eyes at an image of yourself as you are right here, right now in this very moment. 

Now see yourself as clearly and specifically as possible, and then begin to repeat those same phrases to yourself. 

Maybe you be safe. 

May you be healthy. 

And may you be at peace. 

Offering these waves of compassion to yourself. 

The circle of compassion must always include ourselves.

Because very often we can be our own worst judge and critic. 

Very often we can abuse ourselves with our own thoughts. But in this practice, in this moment, nothing but good vibes and deep compassion for your own self. 

Continue to repeat.

[silence]

And then nice and easily, allow the repetition in the phrases to fade away.

[silence]

Allow the image of yourself to also fade away. Just taking a moment to be in that gap, that space, that sacred pause of just being.

[silence]

Now I’d like to invite you to bring an image into your mind of a neutral person. 

This can be a clerk at a grocery store, an employee at a post office, perhaps somebody that you see going in and out of a parking garage or maybe a distant neighbor. 

As you hone into this neutral person, also begin to see them as clearly as possible. 

Then holding that image, we now send those loving-kindness phrases.

May you be safe. 

May you be healthy. 

May you be at peace. 

Go on and repeat as we continue to allow our hearts to expand, to open, to widen with that beautiful, benevolent quality of kindness. 

Offer up these phrases without any expectation at all in return from a pure, deep place within.

[silence]

If you notice the mind drifting away, wandering off to other thoughts, fantasies, tangents of thinking, come back to the practice, to the anchor of the phrases, the anchor of feeling that sensation of your heart space.

[silence]

And then softly, easily letting the repetition go, letting the image go, coming back to your sacred pause. 

A moment of stillness. 

A moment of awareness. 

A deep sense, a presence. 

For the next stage of the meditation now, bring to your mind an image of a slightly challenging person in your life. Not the most challenging person but slightly challenging. 

Ultimately within this loving-kindness practice, we want to be able to tap into being able to bring these qualities to people that we might find challenging and difficult, which isn’t always easy, so we include this slightly challenging person also within our circle of compassion. 

See this person clearly, vividly, and then begin repeating the phrases. 

As you repeat again, if you notice any resistance arising or perhaps working with somebody that’s slightly challenging, a contraction that begins to happen within the heart, just notice that. Be aware of that. You don’t necessarily need to change it or to fix it but to just see it. 

Continuing to repeat.

[silence]

Beautiful. Let the phrases go. Let the image disappear. Coming back to that clarity of the mind, that kindness of the heart, the language the deaf can hear, the blind can see, so deep, so profound. 

And now we bring that power into the last stage of this meditation as we visualize an image of the entire world as if you were on a space shuttle in outer space looking down upon this beautiful, wonderful planet Earth and all the people that inhabit the planet, all the animals on the planet, all of nature, all of life, all of it. 

As we widen that circle as broad as possible, you see the planet and then you offer those same phrases. 

May you be safe. 

May you be healthy. 

May you be at peace. 

Continue to repeat. 

Sometimes these practices can invoke certain emotions. And if those emotions do arise, just let it be there, nothing to push away but also nothing to cling to, continue to focus on the phrase.

[silence]

Take a deep breath in through the nose and then out the mouth. Let it go.

As you’re ready, slowly opening up the eyes. 

The loving-kindness practice, it trains us to take our attention off of ourselves, to put it onto other people. And you can bring this into your daily life. You’re on an airplane. Can you send these phrases to everybody on the airplane? You’re in traffic. You send these phrases to everybody out in traffic. And this can be a beautiful way to continue to open up the heart and to feel that connection to all beings everywhere. 

Thank you for practicing.



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———
Produced by Jason Reim
Opening Music & Closing Music by Ryan Richko



By |2019-06-04T12:29:03+00:00June 3rd, 2019|Be Ultimate Podcast|0 Comments

About the Author:

Travis has become a world-renowned yoga and meditation teacher and author. He teaches his signature Holistic Yoga Flow classes in Los Angeles and in workshops, festivals and retreats around the world. His style is intensely dynamic and has inspired many of today's top athletes, celebrities, and entertainers. Most recently Travis has become passionate about spreading yoga and meditation inside maximum security prisons. This work has proven to bring light to the darkest of places. info@traviseliot.com | traviseliot.com