I hope you are all doing well. I am doing good. In my last post about loving-kindness meditation I finished with there are two ways to practice it, formal and informal. Tonight I am going to share with you the formal way. You can practice both of them together or separate, it is all up to you. You will find what brings you the greatest benefit from this meditation to self love and love of all things around you. When you practice the formal practice of Loving-Kindness spend 5 minutes meditating on each group, love towards yourself, a loved one, a person you feel neutral about, a difficult person and all loving things. To begin this practice take a comfortable position and close your eyes. Find a comfortable chair or cushion and sit with your spine straight. If sitting up is uncomfortable, you can lie down. Take a few deep breaths and focus on the breathing. Take a deep breath and feel your chest and abdomen rise, then exhale and relax. If you can't relax visualize when you exhale tension leaving your body. When you begin to relax think of feelings of friendliness and kindness, like how you feel when a child takes your hand, or you see your best friend. Try to remember how it feels to be generous, remember a time you did something to help another. You may begin to feel calm and joy, feel it now vividly as possible. As you access the feelings of friendliness and kindness in yourself gently direct a set of phrases towards yourself. Look over the ones below and if they don't suit you find what works for you. May I be happy, May I be healthy, May I have peace, May I be safe. Repeat these phrases gently as if you were speaking to a friend. It is important to drop into the meaning and feelings behind the words. Let the words be your guide, keeping you on track and anchored in the practice. Every time you repeat and feel these phrases you are training your mind to loving-kindness. There is more to this formal practice of loving-kindness. I will continue on in my next post. I think it is better to take a little in at a time. We simply cannot undue years of whatever we have thought of ourselves. Being raised Catholic myself, I was always feeling like I had to be perfect, if I sinned I would burn in hell. How could that have built self esteem and self love towards myself or any child for that matter. Even though I felt love from my parents, back then they were not so in tune to helping us to build that self esteem. Not to fault them, but they were raised in a certain way and they parented they way that they knew. I have always been a loving person. I feel with this practice I will TRULY become a loving person. Thanks for visiting my blog.