A Valentine’s Meditation Focused on Love, not Romance.

Meditation, Self Care • February 13, 2021
valentines meditation
Photo by Fabrizio Verrecchia on Unsplash

The Hallmark holiday that is Valentine’s Day may make ‘Love’ appear to be an exclusive club. With membership reserved for those with a romantic partner.

This is precisely why the day can be one of the loneliest days of the year…

…for those who are single
…for those who are in unfulfilling relationships
…for those who are missing a loved one 

The very day meant to celebrate the most profound experience possible has been hijacked by the ‘love’ industry. And instead of sparking joy, it can trigger all kinds of upsetting emotions.

But here’s the thing - if it does cause old wounds to surface, that’s not a bad thing. It’s normal to want to reject or suppress them. But in acknowledging, feeling, and then releasing them, we can weaken their power over us.

A wonderful meditation to help with this is Metta or Loving-Kindness. This Buddhist practice helps us improve self-love. And it also encourages us to send love to those we care for as well as those we find challenging to love.

Traditionally, we send metta to different people over five stages. We begin with ourselves, then move on to someone we care about, someone we have a neutral disposition towards, someone who is challenging us, and lastly, to all beings.

What I love about this meditation, though, is that it’s wonderfully adaptable. A few years ago I created a version especially for Valentine’s Day. The idea is to send Loving Kindness to all the people we have loved through our lives, both romantically and platonically.

If the idea appeals to you, here’s how it goes.

Begin with yourself.

Metta meditation’s foundation is to fill yourself up with love before you send it out to others in the subsequent stages.

If you can, bring to mind the qualities in yourself that you appreciate. And if this challenging, then silently recite the following mantra to yourself:

May I be well.
May I be happy.
May I be peaceful.
May I be filled with loving-kindness.

Bless all of your loved ones.

Allow your family, friends, current romantic partner to come into your consciousness. Silently thank them for being in your life and use the mantra to send them all loving-kindness:

May you be well.
May you be happy.
May you be peaceful.
May you be filled with loving-kindness.

Bless your past lovers.

Even if things ended badly, bring them to mind and remember why you loved them in the first place. Focus on that, rather than the reasons your relationship fell apart. Of course, this may not be easy. In that case, then go straight to the mantra:

May you be well.
May you be happy.
May you be peaceful.
May you be filled with loving-kindness.

The hard one: Bless anyone you’re having difficulties with.

Maybe this is a romantic partner, but there’s conflict in the relationship. Or it could be an ex who you still feel angry towards. But there doesn’t have to be any romantic association with this person.

It doesn’t matter what the connection is or was. If you can, remember the qualities in this person that you do (or used to )admire. And if that’s too difficult, then rely on the mantra.

May you be well.
May you be happy.
May you be peaceful.
May you be filled with loving-kindness.

Send Loving-Kindness to anyone who finds this day difficult.

For those who are coming to terms with a recent breakup. 

For those who are grieving the passing of their life partner.

For those who are experiencing unrequited love. 

For those who do not know how to love themselves.

For all who have difficult emotions triggered by this particular holiday.

May you be well.
May you be happy.
May you be peaceful.
May you be filled with loving-kindness.

Let’s reframe and reclaim Valentine’s Day as a celebration of all kinds of love, rather than romance.

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