15 of us attended the 1st Metta Facilitator gathering as a follow up our workshop in June/July 2012. The gathering was well represented with members from Metta & Metta, Metta Garden, Padma Melaka, Uppekha Kuantan and Metta Bhavana attended. There were a lot of sharing on how their sessions were conducted, challenges faced and discussion on the way forward. We have Metta Circle lead who is very strict eg. on punctuality where at 5 minutes pass the commencement time, the gate will be locked and late comers will not be admitted; another group with yummy food that open up conversation & gathering being hosted at different member’s home; while another group with real determination that even with 2 attendees the circle will still go on. Challenges included members’ fear to take up lead-role, sustaining interest and getting attendees. Discussion were centered around how to encourage others to take up leading roles, composition of members by reaching out to Buddhist who are not active in Buddhist Organisations & active engagement with new comers to having quarterly or yearly programme plan which may include trips eg. to waterfalls.
Bhante Mahinda provided further guidance on the practice of metta meditation including insight into the path leading to nibbana. In response to questions asked, Bhante advised amongst others on handling of spirits and diversity of members with those interested to metta in daily activities to those interested in supramundane.
There were a lot of ideas and suggestions shares, support and encouragement to each other and a sense of gratitude on the positive impact the practice of Metta made to our lives.