Tonglen Meditation

January 29, 2019

This beautiful meditation is a practice of giving and receiving the suffering we feel and that of others. This practice was derive from Tibetan Buddhism to help cultivate more compassion for ourselves and others. The technique I like to use comes from Pema Chodron.

Step 1: Flash on Bodhichitta

Take a few breaths focusing on the spaces of openness or stillness. This contemplation helps open up our awareness and expand our conscious mind and bring in clarity.

Step 2: Visualization 

Inhale and visualize the dark and heavy. Exhale and visualize the light and open. Breathe in completely, taking in negative energy through all the pores of your body. When you breathe out, radiate positive energy completely, through all the pores of your body. Do this until your visualization is synchronized with your in- and out-breaths.

Step 3: Personal Situation

Find something that you are currently suffering from. This can be anger at a person who has done you wrong, this can be physical pain, mental pain anything that you currently feel suffering from. From this point allow yourself to breath in all the suffering. Allow yourself to receive the suffering on the inhale and then on the exhale release the suffering.

Step 4: Expand your Compassion

As you practice this meditation start to expand the suffering out to those you know who are suffering or for all of those suffering in the same way you are. As you practice this meditation this will begin to happen naturally.



If you find yourself struggling to feel the suffering change your suffering until you find something that you can identify with. Try a few until you feel one you can really embrace.