"By practicing mettā we become better people," it might sound like the slogan for the Mettā meditation that was held at Lotus Centre in Prague during the weekend of 27 and 28th October this year. A group of us gathered there to spend time by meditating and opening our hearts.
The event was held under the auspices of the Czech nun, Venerable Bhikkhuni Visuddhi who has been living in the Czech Republic for several years and founded the Karunā Sevena Group.
At the beginning we took the refuge vows and the 5 precepts of the Buddha and decided to spend this day by practicing as much virtuous behaviour as possible.
Venerable Visuddhi‘s Dhamma talk emphasized how the practice of mettā is important for us in our lives. What it offers us and how enormously it can heal the body and spirit. When Ven.Visuddhi asked us what mettā means, there were responses such as: love, kindness and compassion. It is important to wish good towards all people and animals, regardless of whether they are bad or good. It is love that does not judge and we are all born with that quality. We can even achieve nibbāna, when we practice mettā because our mind gradually rids itself of all defilements.
During the weekend participants could meet and talk to Venerable Visuddhi about problems they experience in meditation practice or in personal life. There were also concerned queries directed to Venerable about how to grasp mettā meditation as an object. This can not be answered, as we usually perceive it as a feeling in the body and it is very individual. We can fully recognize it in everyday life.
It was truly delightful that the course was attended by especially many young people... does it mean there is a growing interest in Buddhism amongst young people ?