Metta is an empowering practice

Perhaps this past month has been kind to you, but I am pulling myself up by the bootstraps. It has been a dark month. And if that were not enough – every morning I make an effort to put myself (on purpose!) in the dark when I close my eyes to meditate.

Darkness can (but not always!) provide me with precious moments of profound insight.

Transformations happen in the dark because the dark is where we can be most vulnerable with ourselves.

So why is it that when we enter the dark we often feel least able to believe in ourselves? I call these moments Midnight Meetings With Myself. Often these meetings are permeated with doubt.

What (the hell!) am I doing and how (the hell!) am I going to do it?!

Darkness and doubt are good friends.

Mindfulness practice is one way to be comfortable in the dark by being our own best friend. The practice of befriending yourself is what mindfulness is all about.

Compassion is the key to this kingdom. Dr. Kristen Neff, PH.D. was introduced to me in the MMTCP program and has been doing research on what compassion is and on ways that the practice of compassion (toward ourselves and others) can bring well-being into our daily lives.

At Haleakala Studio we began the practice of metta at the beginning of our mindfulness meetings. Metta is the Pali word for loving kindess. One way to practice metta is 1) to create and 2) to recite (usually four lines of verse) with loving intent.

A sense of harmonious beauty infuses the room when we practice metta. Metta is when we call on each of us to be in relation with our higher selves – with what is true and good.

Why not create your own metta? Speak or silently invoke metta when you want to connect compassionately (and powerfully) with yourself and/or others in ways that are uplifting and supportive.

Metta is an empowering practice.

For support in creating your own metta, go to: and click on the pdf’s for Compassion Support and Metta Examples. You can see these under: ‘Introduction to Meditation & Mindfulness Practice’.

We can always look toward nature to guide us to health and well-being. Have you ever noticed that nature never seems to doubt herself?

The Nature’s Narrative Mandala Essence Card I pulled for the latter half of February) is Frankincense:

Here For You

Even in the dark.

The tree you see above produces Frankincense – a word derived from the French ‘franc encens’ meaning ‘high quality incense’.

Frankincense has been used for millennia to support humans in their desire to connect to their higher selves, with the divine, with source, God or gods, spirits, ancestors, with the elders.

With Frankincense I always have access to my grandmother’s home on Long Island where my family made their annual pilgrimage to stay for two weeks during the summer.

Bringing Frankincense into my meditations brings me to my origins – salt water, wool blankets, fog and sunlight.

Whether its compassion, incense or oils, a warm beverage in cold weather, a cool beverage in warm weather – these are all tools to support the practice of befriending ourselves and accessing the guidance that resides in each and every one of us; our birthright.

With Love and Blessings,

Barbara Seie

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