There are two steps to this, so please read this entire page before doing it. Actually, this is more of a philosophical, spiritual or psychological exercise than a meditation technique, so if you wish, you may want to skip it and move on to the other instructions given in our free menu of "meds".
This partly involves feeling unselfish love/compassion for someone you donít like. Because of that, it is very "touchy" and is often misunderstood - some people think they are supposed to "forgive and forget" grave misdeeds or horrendous individuals. Not so. It's important to remember that you may have good reason to dislike certain people in your life, and they may deserve your feelings due to terrible actions or harm they may have done you or others. How can this be? Why?
This is just one area in which the difference between unselfish love and unconditional love comes in. Loving people unconditionally means you accept whatever they do, no matter how bad. Loving people unselfishly means you don't accept any sort of behavior, and in fact, may mean that you require certain things, or even discipline someone for their own good.
For instance, a child raised by someone practicing unconditional love would be allowed to do anything, be anything, say anything, and still be "loved" and coddled. That approach could result in raising some very nasty adults. A child raised with unselfish love, would always be shown love, but would be lovingly and peacefully disciplined without negativity, if they behaved in negative or harmful ways.
Back to the point, the following exercise is not intended to help you accept or "be alright with" negative personalities or actions that some people have chosen, nor do we want it to foster "victim" syndromes and influence anyone to allow abusive or asinine individuals back into their lives. The actual purpose of this is to help people "let go" of such people in an unselfishly loving manner, while also helping them to develop unselfish love. We believe there is nothing wrong with disliking someone, and not wanting them in our lives. And we can still feel and act that way, while being unselfishly loving ourselves. If you believe in the essential "oneness" of all beings and things in this Universe of ours, then we can still love and care for the spiritual essence of everyone, even if we want nothing to do with them, and dislike them. If a person chooses to be lost, and not be loving, there is nothing we can do other than make our own lives an example of unselfish love - but don't expect anyone else to change unless they want to - we all have free will, and we all reap what we sow. However, we can have compassion for the spirits of those whose have made the choice to be destructive and cause suffering for themselves and others, and not follow that path ourselves, but rather, choose freedom and compassion.
The first part of this visualization exercise starts with asking yourself the following questions - and answering them:
"What's unselfish love and what does it mean to be unselfishly loving?";
"Do I always love unselfishly?" (If the answer to the last questing is no, think about the most recent situations involving that, then go on to the next question);
"Why did I not love unselfishly in that situation?"
After thinking about it, let go of the thought about why you didnít love unselfishly. Why?
The reason why you did not love unselfishly is not as important as making sure you will love unselfishly from now on.
Next, think about the situation again. Completely visualize it in your mind but this time, be unselfishly loving and visualize the different outcome that would result from that.
Next ask yourself:
"What should I do to manifest unselfish love all the time?". Then if you believe in some form of a sort of "consciousness" involved in the life and the universe, such as a Universal Spirit, God, the One, (or whatever concept you have of such a thing) "What would you want me to do?". Then finish it off with a positive affirmation such as, "I am unselfishly loving".
Begin with recalling the concept of, and doing the best you can to FEEL unselfish love. It helps to start by visualizing someone you already have the most unselfish love for. It could be a relative or friend of yours, a child, adult, dog, whatever. If there is someone you hold in high esteem who you feel/believe unselfishly loves you also, such as a spiritual teacher, saint, deity or a "personified ideal", that's the best place to start. Feel their love for you and/or your love for them. Once you have that feeling, hold on to it, then think of someone you like but havenít really felt unselfish love for. Feel unselfish love for the spiritual essence of them.
Next, think of someone you donít like. Feel unselfish love for their spirit also. Remember, that doesn't mean their personality or "outer self". If they have done something hurtful, or harmful, that is inexcusable to you, be sure you only extend your feeling to their essence, their spirit, their Inner Being, NOT their personality and selfish separate self. Then expand your love to embrace everyone and everything you can conceive of (again, with the focus being on the part that is part of you, part of the One, part of the Universal Spirit).