A Prayer of Compassion
For those of you who have seen some of my earlier blogs and facebook posts, you will know that seeing Tony Abbott become Prime Minister did not fill me with joy. I heard myself saying “It’s not the party, I just can’t stand Tony Abbott.”
Oops! For someone who espouses the concept of love for all, I knew I had some work to do. I knew that if I was to find peace with this new government, I would have to find a way to send him love. But no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t muster love for Tony Abbott.
But then I remembered a Buddhist prayer I learned from a book by the Dalai Lama, Becoming Enlightened. My version of the prayer goes something like this:
“I know Tony Abbott is suffering; if only his suffering could be relieved.
I know Tony Abbott is suffering; may his suffering please be relieved.
I know Tony Abbott is suffering; I will do everything in my power to see that his suffering is relieved.
I know Tony Abbott deserves happiness; if only he could have happiness.
I know Tony Abbott deserves happiness; may he please have happiness.
I know Tony Abbott deserves happiness; I will do everything in my power to see that he has happiness.”
I know this seems strange, but after going through this prayer, I could actually bring myself to think: “I love Tony Abbott”, which had been impossible, a few moments earlier.
This really does work.
Is there someone you know you need to forgive, but just can’t get past the thoughts of hurt and pain they have caused you? Perhaps this exercise might help.
First meditate for a few minutes to calm your mind, then try this prayer above, substituting the person’s name for Tony Abbott.
Know that, whatever this person has done to you, this prayer in no way condones what they have done. It is merely a way of obtaining peace for yourself.
After conducting this prayer, is it now possible to say: “I forgive you (Tony Abbott)”, or “I love you (Tony Abbott)”? If not, don’t worry, just try the prayer again another time.
If you can forgive or love this person, or even if you haven’t quite managed it, how wonderful are you for having tried? You are worthy of praise just for trying it.