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Metta Bhavana the love generator

Self-Love, Self-Compassion, the foundation practice for all compassion.

There is an idea bouncing around social media that you have to generate and create compassion, but this is slightly skewed, as we all contain a wealthy seed stock of compassion; it's more about how we cultivate, tend and nurture our compassionate selves.

Through loving kindness of thought, word and action.

So here is a image, a selfie, that I took in 2020 on my birthday at Easter. It was glorious weather and I am in my garden, smiling, I seem happy and peaceful - yet this was week 3 of the pandemic in the UK and we were in our first lock-down. Like most others I was frightened, like many I was alone and was 'homesick' for family and friends scattered around the country and beyond. My neighbours offered me such care the greatest of gifs on that day, over the garden fence compassion, a cream tea over the gate, a conversation. My friends sent gifts, really thoughtful gifts, seedlings from their gardens, homemade treats; and cards, cards filled with loving messages.

That is what a sangha of compassion feels like, tender, thoughtful and kind.

I write this as I have covid again, mildly thanks to the boosters, but still tired, full of cold.

I ask around - do I self isolate? Do I wear a mask and go out? Do I go out to work?

I ask my compassionate wise-self, what do I do?

"You care and tend the seeds of compassion, mindfully giving self care and reducing harm to others", so I stay at home, it is peaceful, birds sing, the sun shine's, unseasonable warm.

And this opportunity in a busy world affords me time, time to listen to the radio, with a heavy, sad heart to the unfolding news of conflict and untold cruelty, conflict and climate crisis. I hear, this and wonder where is the compassion?

After this pandemic, when we thought our human kindness would finally find maturity and blossom.

So I return to my opening thoughts;

We all contain a wealthy seed stock of compassion, it's more about how we cultivate and tend, nurture our compassionate selves.

Through loving kindness of thought, word and action.

My neighbours are Armenian, British, Jordanian, Greek, Japanese, Italian, Australian, Vietnamese, Spanish. And again the doorbell rings, with offers of brodo, lemsips (other cold remedies are available!!) chocolates, but mostly smiles, kindness and love. Thank you.

The inner light in me honours the inner light in you.

To peace

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