GoZen Loving Kindness Meditation

What is it?

Loving-kindness is a meditation focused on nurturing compassion, kindness, goodwill, and love for oneself and others. While the loving-kindness meditation or LKM originates in Buddhist traditions, it’s now practiced widely across cultures and is the focus of extensive research by social scientists.

Why is it good?

LKM has the remarkable ability to improve well-being by changing the brain, heart, and one’s perspective on life. Check out some of these unbelievable findings:

  • Research shows LKM improves our social connections by changing the brain (literally). More specifically, the insula and the temporal parietal junction parts responsible for our ability to empathize are impacted.
  • Research shows LKM can improve vagal tone–a physiological measurement of resilience and well-being.
  • Research shows LKM increases gray matter in the brain region responsible for emotional regulation.
  • Research shows LKM can decrease chronic pain.
  • Research shows LKM enables people to be more satisfied with their lives.
  • Research shows LKM can decrease symptoms of depression.
  • Research shows LKM boosts a wide range of emotions including joy, gratitude, contentment, pride, interest, hope, amusement, and awe.
  • Research shows LKM can significantly decrease posttraumatic stress disorder.
  • Research shows LKM can have an immediate relaxation effect on the body.
  • Research shows LKM makes you more likely to help others.

How do you do it?

Try this loving-kindness script below that’s written for children by GoZen. This script is based on the traditional LKM where you first send love and kindness to yourself, then to those you hold dear like family and friends, next people you may not hold dear, and then to the universe. In the end, the universe sends all that love you sent out back again to you.

Start by sitting or lying down in a comfortable position. Take a few deep breaths in and out. Breathe comfortably. Say these words to yourself:

May I be happy, healthy and peaceful.
May I let go of sadness and bad feelings.
May I be free from anger.
May I be free from pain.
May I be free from difficulties.
May I be free from suffering.
May I be healthy, happy, and peaceful.
May I be filled with loving-kindness.
May I be at peace.

Continue to breathe. As you breathe, imagine that you’re unleashing the power you have stored up inside of you to your family. The power comes from your heart. You’re breathing out the warmth and glow to everyone you love in your family. Imagine their faces. Say these words to yourself:

I spread this loving-kindness out.
I send love to my family.
May they let go of sadness and bad feelings.
May they be free from anger.

May they be free from pain.
May they be free from difficulties.
May they be free from suffering.
May they be healthy, happy, and peaceful.
May they be filled with loving-kindness.
May they be at peace.

As you breathe feel the love and kindness filling your heart. Imagine you are glowing with the energy of love. You will now spread this energy to your friends, classmates, and teachers. Say these words to yourself:

I spread this loving-kindness out.
I send love to my closest friends, to my classmates younger and older, to my teachers.
May they let go of sadness and bad feelings.
May they be free from anger.

May they be free from pain.
May they be free from difficulties.
May they be free from suffering.
May they be healthy, happy, and peaceful.
May they be filled with loving-kindness.
May they be at peace.

Next, think about someone in school or a sibling that has perhaps made you feel bad. You have the power to warm their heart, too, and release this bad feeling. Say these words to yourself:

I spread this loving-kindness out.
I send love to someone who has once made me feel bad.
May I let go of sadness and bad feelings.
May they let go of sadness and bad feelings.
May they be free from anger.

May they be free from pain.
May they be free from difficulties.
May they be free from suffering.
May they be healthy, happy, and peaceful.
May they be filled with loving-kindness.
May they be at peace.

Now, you are really going to see magical ability of love. Your loving energy travels like light—it travels fast, far and wide. With your power you’re going to send love to everyone on Earth and then the entire universe. Say these words to yourself:

I send love now to all the people–
Everywhere on Earth.
May they let go of sadness and bad feelings.
May they be free from anger.

May they be free from pain.
May they be free from difficulties.
May they be free from suffering.
May they be healthy, happy, and peaceful.
May they be filled with loving-kindness.
May they be at peace.

May all beings in the universe be free from suffering.
May all beings in all universes, everywhere, be free from suffering.
May all beings of all kinds, in all directions, be happy and at peace.
Above and below, near and far, high and low,
May all types of beings: humans, animals, trees, birds, anything seen or not seen…
May all beings and creatures, with no exceptions…
May they all be healthy, happy, and peaceful.
May they filled with loving-kindness.
May they be at peace.

Now, everyone to whom you have sent your love is sending their love back. Say these words to yourself:

May I be happy, healthy and peaceful.
May I let go of sadness and bad feelings.
May I be free from anger.
May I be free from pain.
May I be free from difficulties.
May I be free from suffering.
May I be healthy, happy, and peaceful.
May I be filled with loving-kindness.
May I be at peace.


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