Copy

Day 6: Looking With a Kindly Gaze

Dear <<First Name>>

I’m going to share a way of relating that I call “loving gaze.” If you were on our 28 day meditation challenge this will be very familiar to you. This approach is borrowed from Jan Chozen Bays, who writes in How to Train a Wild Elephant of the practice of “Loving Eyes.”

In her book she says:
We know how to use loving eyes when we are falling in love, when we see a new baby or a cute animal. Why do we not use loving eyes more often?
So what we can do is to recall, or even just imagine, the experience of looking with loving eyes. You can recall or imagine looking at a beloved child, or a lover, or even a pet. I often remember what it's like to watch my children sleeping. I find that the sense of tenderness and appreciation, and acceptance is very transferrable, so once you’ve evoked a loving gaze in this way you can turn that sense of looking lovingly upon yourself. As you notice the body, your breathing, your thoughts, etc., you can look at them with loving eyes.

And once you’ve evoked that for yourself, you can now turn your loving gaze upon others: friends, people you don’t know, people you have difficulty with, animals, all beings…

This, I find, is a very quick way to help lovingkindness to emerge.

And when we do this, everything we experience seems to become gentler and softer. The world appears to be a lovelier, sometimes heartbreakingly beautiful, place. Even the ugly bits of life seem beautiful in their ugliness. We can feel that we're in love with life. And we start to realize that the world is our experience of the world, which is not separable from ourselves. And so when we change, the world we perceive changes too. The world of our experience becomes more loving, more tender.

There’s something Chozen says about this that always leaves me feeling like my heart is wide open:
Seeing with loving eyes is not a one-way experience, nor is it just a visual experience. When we touch something with loving eyes, we bring a certain warmth from our side, but we may also be surprised to feel warmth radiating back to us. We begin to wonder, is everything in the world made of love? And have I been blocking that out? [Emphasis added]
Give it a try, both in your sitting practice and as you go about your daily life. You can start right now, as your eyes scan the words in front of you. Look with love. And then carry that loving gaze into your next activity. With metta (lovingkindness),

Bodhipaksa
Giving back: If you'd like to support us in running the 100 Days of Lovingkindness, fee free to make a donation to Wildmind.

Resources: We'll be announcing soon some opportunities to participate in a live guided meditation broadcast. Stay tuned!

Community: Our Community on Google Plus is a wonderful source of support. Feel free to click here and join

Previous emails: If you just joined up you can see the previous emails here: 
Wildmind's Meditation Newsletter November 2017: Mindfulness: Freedom From, Freedom To
Bodhi Mind app available for download now!
Wildmind's October 2017 Meditation Newsletter
You’re receiving this email because you subscribed to our newsletter mailing list. You may unsubscribe at any time by following the instructions at the end of this email.
Copyright © 2014 Wildmind LLC, All rights reserved.