Friday, 1 May 2009

The Metta Sutta

I was recently re-reading the Metta Sutta, the Buddha's discourse on loving kindness to all beings, and was impressed by how the sheer beauty of this teaching still leaves me lost in wonder at the depth of the Buddha's compassion and humanity.

Metta Sutta

One who is skilled in doing good and who wishes to attain that state of calm (i.e. Nibbana) should act thus. They should be able, upright, perfectly upright, obedient, gentle and humble.

Contented, easily looked after,
with few duties, simple in livelihood. Controlled in senses, discreet, not impudent; Not greedily attached to families.

They should not commit any slight wrong,
so that other wise ones might find fault in them. May all beings be happy and safe, may their hearts be wholesome.

Whatsoever living beings there are;
feeble or strong, long, stout or medium, short, small or large, seen or unseen.

Those dwelling far or near, those who are born and those who are to be born. May all beings, without exception, be happy minded.

Let not one deceive another nor despise any
person whatsoever in any place. In anger or ill-will, let them not wish any harm to another.

Just as a mother would protect her only child at the risk of her own life, even so let them cultivate a boundless heart towards all beings.

Let thoughts of boundless love pervade the
whole world; above, below and across without any obstruction, without any hatred, without any enmity.

Whether one stands, walks, sits or lies down,
as long as they are awake, they should develop this mindfulness. This, they say is the Highest conduct here.

Not falling into error,
virtuous and endowed with insight, one discards attachment to sensuous desires. Truly, one does not come again; to be conceived in a womb.

By firm determination of this truth
May I ever be well.

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