May We Be Safe
May We Be Happy
May We Be Healthy
May We Live In Ease
Sitting on my meditation cushion after my morning matcha, I thought about how is is all truly about safety, isn’t it? When we don’t feel safe on any level - safe in our homes or with our families, safe at work, safe in our streets, safe with our government, safe at the doctors, and even safe with our own thoughts or in our own bodies - we are unable to feel happy, healthy and at ease. Our nervous system either shuts down and immobilizes or we activate and mobilize. Don't we all want and need to feel safe?
The moment we realize everyone of us on this planet wants the same thing - to feel safe - the seeds of compassion can sprout roots. When we feel safe, we no longer feel compelled to control, dominate or belittle. Compassion never means condemning or condoning another’s actions, but rather recognizing their humanity and how the deep desire for safety drives all behavior. One person may believe a wall will make them safe, while another believes open borders and open arms are the answer. Only by connecting to the deeper motivation - the desire for safety - can we begin to forge a connection and build relationships, whether with others or with ourselves.
In Metta Meditation we repeat the following phrases, sending loving kindness to all beings. Traditionally, we start this undertaking by focusing on a benefactor or loved one for whom we have nothing but the best intentions. As we progress, we eventually direct our heartfelt well wishes to those with whom we find challenging and difficult, which, of course, could include ourselves. But take a moment and consider this: if everyone on this planet felt safe - safe to be themselves, safe to express their thoughts and ideas without fear of judgment, safe to explore their creativity, safe to connect and love others, safe to exist - what would this world be like? So I invite you to try this - practice sending these heartfelt loving wishes to everyone...everyone. Even the people who irritate or upset you. Even the people with whom you disagree about well... anything. If everyone felt safe, happy, healthy and felt at ease, what might be the state of this world?