Acharya Buddharakkhita

Metta: The Philosphy and Practice of Universal Love

Metta: The Philosphy and Practice of Universal Love

The Pali word mettā is a multi-significant term meaning loving-kindness, friendliness, goodwill, etc. If these qualities of mettā are sufficiently cultivated through mettābhāvanā — the meditation on universal love — the result is the acquisition of a tremendous inner power which preserves, protects and heals both oneself and others.

The present booklet aims at exploring the various facets of mettā both in theory and in practice. The examination of the doctrinal and ethical side of mettā will proceed through a study of the popular Karaniyametta Sutta, the Buddha’s “Discourse of Universal Love” and several other short texts.

The explanation of the meditation on universal love will give practical directions for developing this type of contemplation as set forth in the main meditation texts of the Theravada Buddhist tradition.

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About Acharya Buddharakkhita

Acharya Buddharakkhita (1922-2013) was a Buddhist monk and writer. After graduating from the Institute of Architectural Technology in Calcutta, he joined the Indian Defence.

He worked there at the time of the 2nd World War after which he retired to find truth and freedom. He became a monk in 1948. As a monk he travelled throughout India and also taught in Sri Lanka and Burma. Venerable Acharya Buddharakkhita is the founder and president of the Maha Bodhi Society in Bangalore, India. In 1956, he was a member of the editorial board of the Sixth Buddhist Council in Rangoon which released a complete edition of the Pali canon.

Since then, he has written numerous books and translations of Buddhist texts published in many countries. Most famous is his classic English translation of the Dhammapada, published by the BPS under the title The Dhammapada: The Buddha's Path of Wisdom. He also edits and publishes Dhamma, a monthly magazine.

As an internationally recognized meditation master he has lived and taught abroad and founded the Buddhayoga Meditation Society in the United States. He has also taught Buddhology at the Nalanda Pali Postgraduate Institute, Bihar University. Entirely committed to putting Buddhist principles into practice, he has received an award for the many facets of humanitarian activities in his native India.

You yourselves must strive, the Buddhas only point the way

Buddha, Dhp 276