Meditation: Brahma Vihara  (audio)

Meditation: Brahma Vihara (audio)

Over the years, I’ve led and given talks on many retreats devoted to the practice of the four Brahma Vihara meditations – the development of loving-kindness, compassion, gladness and equanimity. I’ve been gathering together some of the audio links to recordings of myself leading through the meditation. You can listen to them using the links below. You can also download them in which case the easiest way to listen is to import them into iTiunes or some similar software.

If you want to listen to a couple of my talks on the Brahma Viharas go to this page where you’ll find  “Brahma Viharas and the Key Moment” and to “The Alchemy of Happiness”. There is also an article that I wrote about them called “Four Great Catalysts of Being”.

Introduction to the four practices :

This is a short talk which I gave on the first evening of a weekend retreat at Taraloka on the theme of the Brahma Viharas. The date was 8 July 2007 a day after Londoners had been the victim of suicide bombers who blew themselves up on the Underground and on a London Bus, killing 52 people and injuring 770 people. We were about to begin two days practice of four meditations which develop loving-kindness, compassion, gladness and equanimity. The timing was poignant. The theme was very appropriate.

Listen to the talk here Brahma Vihara Introduction (22min)

Download here (6.3MB)

Practical Introduction to Metta Bhavana – the development of Loving Kindness.

This is a led workshop which I’ve often done on retreat. I get people to pair up and sit a few feet apart, like 2 or 3 feet, and facing one another, either sitting on chairs or on cushions on the floor, and at roughly the same level …. don’t want one person having to look up or look down at their partner. This is definitely best done with another human being right there in front of you!

Listen to the recording : metta workshop (30min)

Or download here (8.7MB)

Led Karuna Bhavana Practice – the development of Compassion.

The meditation proceeds in six stages. I’ve included a short introduction here just helping people – you! – relax and settle into yourself.

01 Introduction (4.5min)

02 Self (8.5min)

03 Suffering Person (6.5min)

04 Friend (5.5min)

05 Neutral Person (8min)

06 Difficult Person (7min)

07 All Beings (11min)

Download all tracks here (approx 15MB)

Led Mudita Bhavana Practice – the Development of Gladness / Sympathetic Joy

Again the meditation proceeds in six stages with the basic process being that metta transforms to gladness, or sympathetic joy, when it comes into contact with joy, good fortune, appreciation. The first and  last tracks are poems by two of my favourite poets: Kenneth White and Kathleen Raine. the second track is a reading from a tibetan Buddhist text called The Yogi’s Joy. Tracks 3-8 are the actual meditation.

01 Introduction and Poem: “The White Hare” by Kenneth White (4min)

02 Reading: The Yogi’s Joy by Milarepa (2.5min)

03 Self (6min)

04 Boon Companion (5.5min)

05 Friend (6.5min)

06 Neutral Person (8min)

07 Difficult Person (5min)

08 All Beings (8min)

09 Poem: “The Moment” by Kathleen Raine (2min)

Download all tracks here (approx 14MB)

Led Workshop and Practice of Upekkha Bhavana – Development of Equanimity

01 Upekkha Workshop (23min) Like the metta workshop earlier, this is done in pairs.

Followed by led Upekkha Bhavana practice. If you’ve done the workshop exercise, then have a cup of tea and bit of space before moving on to the meditation itself.

02 Self (8min)

03 Neutral Person (6min)

04 Friend (5.5min)

05 Difficult Person (6min)

06 AllBeings (7min)

Lownload all tracks here (approx 16MB)

And if you want to download everything, use this link (approx 70MB). You’ll get everything above plus the talk “Brahma Viharas and the Key Moment”

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