Strength in Compassion Meditation session was the final of three meditation sessions hosted by Tradeswomen Australia to promote mental wellbeing for apprentices and tradeswomen during COVID. The session focused on how Loving-Kindness meditation can help to be compassionate to onesself as well as others, control our emotions, stay calm and reach a new level of happiness.
Firstly, our host and attendees focused on how we begin our life’s journey – we come into this world as a blank slate, whereby only love and care is provided, and how we are progressively influenced and downtrodden through exposure to the unkindness, rejection, lack of control, not being loved, not being good enough from the outside world. Bias, cynicism and barriers are built between ourselves and other through our perceptions being changed through these negative influencers. Our ability to open our hearts and be loving progressively close up.
This means that in our sufferings, in which we are going through right now during COVID, certain behaviours come out – frustration, anger, loneliness, depression, even hatred and violence. It is important to understand that these behaviours are outward displays of deeply rooted fears that slowly transformed us. But it is more important to note that even more deeply rooted and stronger than our fears is that pure, unadulterated love that we experienced from the start of our life’s journey – that what we truly want is the best for ourselves and others. Once we understand this and practice it, we practice loving kindness to ourselves – we become better and more compassionate people. In tapping into this deep seated love and compassion, we become more open, honest and authentically ourselves because fear no longer dictates who we are and what we do.
Once this is achieved, we can show loving-kindness to those who we love. We can understand that they also may sometimes act out of fear, and also need to show compassion towards themselves. It then allows both parties to build and repair relationships, see things from their perspective and allow ourselves to be vulnerable with them.
Where to from there? Our ability to be loving and compassionate is so deep and strong that it can let us extend to people that we don’t even know. Our attitudes towards others develop into seeing only our differences – that’s when we close ourselves off, cannot see other perspectives, become judgemental and cannot even make eye contact with those around us. But if we understand that every human being in this world started from the same place, built barriers and defenses through deeply rooted fears, then we reach a higher level of understanding. From there, we can show compassion because we want what is best for them, be open and authentic with everyone around us. In many instances, their guards will drop because they can sense our compassion and authenticity, and be encouraged to do the same.
We live in a world and work in particular industries that might perceive love, kindness and compassion as a sign of weakness. The reverse is true – having compassion requires a deep level of inner strength in letting go of our fears and be our authentic selves. It allows us to process more genuinely and happily in our daily work lives. Displaying compassion also doesn’t make you a pushover – you may feel concern for others around you when they display their fears, but not accept bad behaviour.
So – get yourself comfortable, mentally prepare yourself for the session and make this time about you. Pause – think about your intention for your loving kindness session – is it for you or for a loved one or for everyone? Set your intention.
Firstly, think about when you were at your happiest and picture your happiest self in front of you. Or think about your loved one, happy, smiling and content in front of you. Or every human being in this world happy, thriving and joyful. Repeat this mantra:
May I/you/you all be filled with loving kindness
May I/you/you all be well
May I/you/you all be peaceful and at ease
May I/you/you all be happy.
We hope these thoughts bring benefit to you and well into the future. Stay safe, happy and compassionate!