Posted by: Upāsaka | 04/16/2013

May I Be Healthy and Strong

I have now been able to feel my way, however superficially, into abyapajjo homi and have now moved onto the next phrase, anigho homi. I have decided to understand the metta phrase to as sitting somewhere between “May I be free from outer harm” and “May I be free from physical suffering” as most of the translations available seem to interpret it as on or the other. Not being content only with the via negativa as I find much harder to feel into the absence of things, I also played with truning the phrase on its head and expressing it postively as “May I be healthy and strong. May I be free of sickness and injury.”

It sounds almost ridiculous now as I put it into words but there was a definite resistance in the mind when I came to this recollection. This resistance became even more marked and pronounced when I formulated the recitation in positive terms. Pondering it now it almost feels as though I were afraid of setting myself up for disappointment by wishing for security and health in the physical world. This fear was also accompanied by a sense that wishing for physical safety and security was somehow below me and that the body was more or less a contemptible appendage to the mind. Silly but true.

I hope that, as the practice flowers and bears fruit, it will help to uncover more of these insights about the way I view myself and others. I see now why Ven. Thanissaro views metta bhavana as an insight practice.

May we all take care of ourselves with gentle kindness!

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