Meta position. Metta Sutra. A good night’s sleep.

Several friends of mine have been experiencing relationship troubles lately, and I’ve felt an impact myself. Surprise, anger, sorrow, disappointment, empathy, compassion for all. I am still feeling some heaviness about this.

I’ve struggled to comprehend, to see the situation from each person’s point of view, to see where I was attached to things as they were, to understand the differences in values that created the conflicts, to accept what happened, to advise well when asked, to let my emotions wash through me and move through it as cleanly and clearly as I know how.

From the NLP world comes the concept of meta position, which is a location outside a situation which enables you to see the situation from a broader perspective. Meta position has a degree of dissociation, of not taking it personally, but also extending compassion to all concerned. At least, that’s how I’ve learned it.

You can “go meta” with yourself on your own inner conflicts, processes, and interactions, and you can use it to see yourself and those you care about as you imagine God might perceive the situation in the fullness of time.

You know, the really big picture, using Big Mind.

Today I’m grateful for the concept and practice of meta position.


The Metta Sutra contains Buddha’s words on loving kindness, a quality cultivated by Buddhist practice. It’s not very long and it includes these well-known words:

May all beings be happy.

I’m grateful for the Buddha for giving us the Metta Sutra. Here’s the entire text.

The Metta Sutra

This is the work for those who are skilled and peaceful, who seek the good: May they be able and upright, straightforward, of gentle speech and not proud. May they be content and easily supported, unburdened with their senses calmed. May they be wise, not arrogant and without desire for the possessions of others. May they do nothing mean or that the wise would reprove.

May all beings be happy. May they live in safety and joy. All living beings, whether weak or strong, tall, stout, medium or short, seen or unseen, near or distant, born or to be born, may they all be happy.

Let no one deceive another or despise any being in any state, let none by anger or hatred wish harm to another. As a mother watches over her child, willing to risk her own life to protect her only child, so with a boundless heart should one cherish all living beings, suffusing the whole world with unobstructed loving-kindness.

Standing or walking, sitting or lying down, during all one’s waking hours, may one remain mindful of this heart and this way of living that is the best in the world. Unattached to speculations, views and sense desires, with clear vision, such a person will never be reborn in the cycles of suffering.

Click this link to view (and print, if you desire) this translation of the Metta Sutra.


I’ve spent many years of my life taking a good night’s sleep for granted. When you aren’t sleeping well, it affects your entire sense of well-being. I’ve gone through periods like that, and it was such a relief when I slept well again.

These days I occasionally have nights where my sleep is disturbed. Last night I slept soundly and woke feeling deeply rested and ready for the day, and for that, I am most grateful.

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