It’s traditional at the end of formal meditation to offer a “dedication of merit,” a blessing or resolve acknowledging the efforts we make to practice and that the benefits of practice extend far beyond ourselves. In the Vipassana/Insight tradition, (out of which mindfulness meditation has grown) this dedication often ends with the lovely blessing “May all beings be peaceful, happy and come to the end of suffering.”
In the early years of practice I didn’t understand how my meditation practice would or could benefit anyone else, and the dedication of merit didn’t really land anywhere. It was nice, but it felt more like something the teacher said to end the practice period.
During this time, I was very busy sitting quietly, breathing, noticing my popcorn mind, and mostly avoiding fights with my teenagers. But little by little, I saw how my decreasing reactivity and increasing clarity had a very direct effect on me, my family, my work, on everything. Over time I’ve come to understand what a profound and far-reaching practice this is, and that the intention to practice for the benefit of others is serious.
In that light, this week’s post is a very personal piece on forgiveness. I am excited to tell you that it was recently published on LionsRoar.com, the new online platform for Shambhala Sun and Buddhadharma magazines. My motivation to make this piece public is that it may be helpful to others.
Please click Here to read it. I hope you enjoy it!