Cultivating benevolence
Cultivating benevolence
Cultivating benevolence | 3:40

Welcome to this meditation program based on a concept we hear a lot about and which is particularly essential in our lives: “benevolence”.

Etymologically speaking, it comes from the Latin “bénévolence”, meaning to want good, and it’s so important to want good. To wish well is to have a positive orientation of attention towards someone or something without passing judgment, it’s to want that person to be well, to want that person to feel good, whether it’s towards the people we live with, towards our children, our parents, towards all those around us, perhaps also for people we hardly know, or don’t know at all.

It’s really a way of being deep inside, it’s a state of being, benevolence, it’s something that opens up, and allows us to feel the amplitude of the relationships we have with each other. Benevolence is a quality we can cultivate that creates bonds. It’s knowing how interdependent we are with others. Kindness is also something we can experience in relation to ourselves, because we are often our own worst enemies and we judge ourselves very negatively. A little gentleness for ourselves makes a big difference. This is what we’re going to tackle step by step in these different meditations on the central theme of kindness.

Before concluding this introduction, I’d like to tell you a story attributed to the Amerindians.

A wise old man was talking to his grandson and said: “We all have two wolves fighting within us. An aggressive, snarling, raping black wolf and a benevolent, warm, loving white wolf.”

The child listens very carefully and asks his grandfather: “Yes, but who wins this battle?”

And the grandfather replies: “The one we feed.”

I’ll leave you to reflect on this story. Thank you and see you soon for a practice session.

How to cultivate kindness through meditation

Meditation can be an effective tool for cultivating kindness towards yourself and others.

Meditation practices to help you develop benevolence

Kindness meditation (Metta):

Metta meditation is specifically designed to cultivate kindness towards yourself and others. It involves repeating benevolent phrases or wishes, such as “May I be happy, healthy and safe” or “May all beings be happy and at peace”. By concentrating on these positive intentions, you gradually develop feelings of benevolence and compassion.

Compassion meditation

This meditation focuses on developing compassion for others. You can visualise someone who is suffering and send thoughts of compassion and support in their direction. You can also repeat phrases such as “May you be free from suffering” or “May you find peace and happiness”.

Meditation on loving-kindness

This meditation focuses on the expansion of loving-kindness towards all beings. You can visualise a growing circle of love and loving energy around you, your family, your friends, your community, and ultimately, all of humanity. You can also repeat positive affirmations, such as “May all beings be filled with love and happiness”.

Self-compassion meditation

This meditation focuses on being kind to yourself. It’s about cultivating acceptance, kindness and compassion towards your own imperfections and difficulties. You can repeat phrases such as “I am worthy of love and compassion” or “May I be kind to myself in difficult times”.

Gratitude meditation

Gratitude is an attitude that encourages kindness towards life and others. Gratitude meditation involves taking a few moments to focus on the positive aspects of your life, on what you are grateful for. You can express your gratitude mentally or out loud for the people, experiences, qualities and blessings you have in your life.

When you practise these different forms of gratitude meditation regularly, you can strengthen your ability to cultivate kindness, develop empathy and connect more with others. The key is to devote time to these meditation practices and make them part of your daily routine.

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I cultivate benevolence

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