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Day 24 of Wildmind’s 100 Day Meditation Challenge

100 day meditation challenge 024We’re almost a quarter of the way through the challenge!

One thing I’ve been working on is cultivating more lovingkindness in daily life. I find that if I don’t deliberately do this, then my mind often has a bit of a hard and brittle “edge” to it that can come out in irritability and even in anger.

Lovingkindness meditation helps, but it’s not enough. There are still live, unexploded reserves of anger inside my being, and they need to be defused.

Practicing lovingkindness in daily life is like sending in the bomb squad.

So as I’m driving, or walking, or standing in line in a store, and even often when I’m working on my computer, I’ll be cultivating lovingkindness. Sometimes I repeat the lovingkindness phrases — things like “May you be well; may you be happy” — and sometimes all I have to do is to bring my awareness to the heart and remember to be loving. Often that’s all it takes.

There are times I forget, but that’s OK. If I forget to connect with lovingkindness while I’m walking to the post office, but remember on the way back, then at least some of my time has been spent cultivating lovingkindness. Any effort is better than none. I am setting up some “mindfulness triggers” to help me remember to connect with lovingkindness. Walking now triggers this action more often than not, as does driving. I find it a little harder to remember when I’m working, but that’s becoming easier as well. Often when I’m working I’m writing to someone or writing for a particular audience, and I find it enjoyable to connect with lovingkindness for those I’m communicating with.

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About Bodhipaksa

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Bodhipaksa is a Buddhist practitioner and teacher, a member of the Triratna Buddhist Order, and a published author. He founded Wildmind in 2001. Bodhipaksa has published many guided meditation CDs and guided meditation MP3s.

He teaches at Aryaloka Buddhist Center in Newmarket, New Hampshire. You can follow Bodhipaksa on Twitter, join him on Facebook, or hang out with him on .

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Comments

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Comment from Sharon
Time: January 24, 2013, 11:50 pm

Your honesty with your daily struggles as an experienced meditator provides comfort and encouragement to us new to the practice. It is with loving kindness you share these with us. It is with gratitude they are received.

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Comment from Bodhipaksa
Time: January 25, 2013, 10:38 am

Hi Sharon.

Thank you. The word “struggle” suggests something other than what’s going on, though. To me it’s just like washing the dishes. The dishes are dirty. They need washed. You wash them. But you don’t really “struggle” to wash the dishes. It’s kind of like that with me. Actually it’s exactly like that! There’s unkindness present. It needs to be “metta’d.” I “metta” it! Rinse and repeat…

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