Ever since happiness heard your name,
it has been running through the streets trying to find you.
Imagine that happiness is actually a being, an entity. Imagine that not only is happiness not a thing but a who, but that Happiness knows your name. Imagine that this being named Happiness who knows your name is running through life trying to find YOU. If Happiness were a force roaming about looking for you or for me could we not imagine that a connection with Happiness would mean such a good turn for our lives?
Ah, but we are just engaging in some imagination, aren’t we? Happiness isn’t a being or an entity, is it? This is not true or real, is it? What if between the two of us, just one of us imagined that Happiness, the being, was looking for us. What if you held that to be true and real, but I did not, or at least I had my doubts. The only real hope I might have of any positive change in my life might be because you–for whom Happiness as a being in search of us is true and real–reached out to me to help make that real and true for me as well. If you did that, Happiness would be your name, your efforts, your relating to me, and you clearly know my name. You clearly are in search of me to help me engage with Happiness.
This is why in the Metta meditation (to read about the Metta meditation see this post), I think that we must focus on loving kindness for ourselves first. Seeing, feeling, being and doing loving kindness must become my desire, my experience, my practice, and when it does, then I can become loving kindness for you. In turn, your desire, your experience, your practice allows you to become loving kindness for another.
Ultimately, I do think that loving kindness is bigger than just my ability to imagine it, experience it and practice it. I do think that some Ground, some Source is the holy soup from which all of this life emerges. When I practice, when I tune in, I find glimpses of this and call it Loving Kindness.
In another time, and another place, a woman named Teresa of Avila observed the same. She called this Source the Christ, and of that Source she said that the Christ had no body in this world but ours, no hands, no feet but ours; that if the Christ were to look out onto the world with eyes of compassion it would be through your eyes, my eyes; that if the Christ were to do good in the world it would be carried about on our feet; and that if the Christ were to bring blessing into this world, it would be through our hands.
May we be filled with loving kindness. May we be well.