Metta prayers can consist of any number of different desires and sentiments. I encourage you to read those written by others, as you strive to develop your own personal metta prayer. Last week we reviewed one based upon the work of Thích Nhất Hạnh. This week we’ll look at a metta prayer composed by Maylie Scott. Maylie Scott was a Zen Buddhist priest and social worker who was passionate about social justice. Prior to her death, she devoted much of her time assisting those in prisons and homeless shelters throughout California. She wrote this metta prayer in 1994:
This is what should be accomplished by the one who is wise,
May I be well, loving, and peaceful. May all beings be well, loving, and peaceful.
May I be at ease in my body, feeling the ground beneath my seat and feet, letting my back be long and straight, enjoying breath as it rises and falls and rises.
May I know and be intimate with body mind, whatever its feeling or mood, calm or agitated, tired or energetic, irritated or friendly.
Breathing in and out, in and out, aware, moment by moment, of the risings and passings.
May I be attentive and gentle towards my own discomfort and suffering.
May I be attentive and grateful for my own joy and well-being.
May I move towards others freely and with openness.
May I receive others with sympathy and understanding.
May I move towards the suffering of others with peaceful and attentive confidence.
May I recall the Bodhisattva of compassion; her 1,000 hands, her instant readiness for action. Each hand with an eye in it, the instinctive knowing what to do.
May I continually cultivate the ground of peace for myself and others and persist, mindful and dedicated to this work, independent of results.
May I know that my peace and the world’s peace are not separate; that our peace in the world is a result of our work for justice.
May all beings be well, happy, and peaceful.
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