There’s no wrong way to do metta or lovingkindness. Sometimes the practice of cultivating lovingkindness is simply to radiate love without words. Sometimes it’s to begin by holding yourself with kindness.
Lovingkindness can be an antidote to anxiety and fear. We become more gracious with the difficulties of life as we open the heart.
Meditation talk on reducing a sense of self. Guided meditation on sense of self and gentle awareness of mood. Dhamma talk on hopelessness. Losing hope/living without hope, and how we can commit without a sense of emotional investment to something in the future. Differences between hope, faith (sadha) and enthusiasm (chanda).
After basic instructions in (1) settling and stabilizing attention, and (2) practicing mindfulness, there is a brief general guidance in practicing to cultivate equanimity, especially by noticing moments of reactivity (semi-consciously or unconsciously grasping or pushing away at the level of body, mind, or emotions), and exploring them. Such guidance is repeated about 15 minutes into the silent practice.
Guided meditation on letting go and meditating in the present. Talk about the rains retreat tradition and its origin stories, various traditions, events and rules around the rains period, possible commitments laypeople can make.