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From ABC, this is the 10 percent happier podcast. I'm Dan Harris.


Hey, guys, time for a Friday bonus, and this is a guided meditation from the inimitable Joseph Goldstein, one of the founding meditation teachers on the 10 percent happier app. And in this meditation, he's going to give us a sort of counterintuitive way to get out of our own heads. And it centers around a simple but provocative question you might ask yourself from time to time, which is, how can I help?


Here's Joseph. Hello, this is Joseph, nice to be with you. Compassion arises from a willingness to come close to suffering. And in response to the suffering we encounter, the compassionate heart asks the question, how can I help? And this meditation, we will use compassionate phrases to cultivate the feeling of compassion toward another. Let's explore this together. Take a comfortable sitting posture. Settled into the awareness of the body. I know you're sitting. You can begin to feel the sensations of the body breathing.


Centering the attention, the awareness at the heart center, that area in the center of the chest. As if you're breathing in and out from this heart center. Breathing in, no, you're breathing in. Breathing out, no, you're breathing out. Let the heart and mind relax into this awareness of the breath at the heart center. And then call to mind someone you know, either personally or perhaps someone from the news. Somebody. He was experiencing some kind of suffering in their lives.


Maybe that they're experiencing some physical distress. Or some mental suffering. Bring an image of this person to mind. In some way open to and connecting with the suffering that they're experiencing. And simply repeat the basic phrase of compassionate wish. May you be free of suffering? May you be free of suffering? As best you can hold the image. Well, the sense of that person in mind. Aware of the suffering that they're experiencing. And connecting with your own inner motivation.


To help in whatever way you can. Slowly repeating the phrase compassionate response. May you be free of suffering? May you be free of suffering? It may be that as you're expressing this wish, may you be free of suffering. Holding the person who's experiencing difficulties in their lives in your mind and your heart. It may be that your own mind will begin to wander. Get lost in thoughts of past a future. As soon as you become aware that the mind is lost in thought.


Simply come back to feeling the body. Feel the body sitting. Begin to feel the sensations of the body breathing. Very gently at the heart center. And reconnect with the phrase expressing our compassionate feeling. May you be free of suffering? May you be free of suffering? Become aware of the feeling in your heart, the motivation. That genuinely wishes that this person be free of suffering. I repeat this simple phrase, holding the image of the sense of the person in your mind, in your heart.


Connect with the meaning of the words. Connect with the motivation behind the words. May you be free of suffering? May you be free of suffering? May you be at ease? May you be free of physical pain? May you be free of mental distress? May you be free of suffering? Now you'll be at ease. When you're ready. You can open your eyes and taking your surroundings. During the meditation, you may have felt a lot of compassion at times, or perhaps very little compassion as you were repeating the phrases.


We start wherever we are and develop it from that point. And even if you feel as if the compassion for another is not yet very strong, as someone engaged in this practice said, at the very least, I've developed compassion for myself. For not having enough compassion. And so we settled into this practice of compassion, letting it grow naturally in its own way as this beautiful quality begins to transform our life and our experience. Thank you and I look forward to practicing with you again.


Big thank you to Joseph, as always, and if you want to get more meditations from Joseph, check out the 10 percent happier app.


By the way, many 10 percent happier users have written in over the past few months to tell us how vital their meditation practice has been to helping them cope with this terrible, terrible year.


If you know somebody who could use a little bit more balance, you can send them a gift subscription to the 10 percent happier app. We're offering gift subscriptions at a discount through the end of this month. Take advantage of that discount by visiting 10 percent dotcom gift that is 10 percent one word all spelled out Dotcom's gift. That does it for today. We'll see you here on Monday with a fresh episode.