One of my favorite morning practices is Lovingkindness, which is very powerful and is sourced from ancient Buddhist teaching and practices.
There are many things I like about this practice.
First of all, it is SIMPLE.
Secondly, it is TRANSFORMATIVE. The more you do it, the more you will notice things shift around you - only because the shifts are occurring within you first.
If we CHANGE, the world also CHANGES.
Yes, it is as simple as that.
But the thing is, we have to constantly work at changing ourselves. It is the essence of human nature, and of Buddhist teachings as well. Buddhists teach about the impermanence of all things. Nothing lasts forever. Many of us have heard the old adage, "The only constant in life is change."
But in order to change, we must be willing to open our hearts first, and then subsequently our minds. But I believe all change begins in the heart.
We could become disillusioned by all the violence in the world - the constant mass killings, the instances of war - and its displacement of of people - creating millions of refugees, the political strife present in so many places and the impossible battle between opposing philosophical systems and beliefs.
Or, we can resolve to change ourselves. In doing so, we change our little corner of the world, as I used to tell my students.
But first - we must open our hearts - ALL of us - everywhere.
And so, now I begin my Metta - or Lovingkindness practice with the phrase: "May my heart open."
Let us resolve to open our hearts - to what is - and then to what could be. Let us open our hearts to each other. We CAN make a difference - you and me - together. One person and one place and one situation at a time.
And let us ask:
MAY ALL BEINGS EVERYWHERE,
OPEN THEIR HEARTS.
olga rodriguez Rasmussen
Changing the world!