Just now I was reading through some of this: http://compik.fd.cvut.cz/~mrazek/books/ ... nglish.pdf
Starting at page 23, he spends while outlining the benefits of practicing metta for the practitioner:
Up until reading that paragraph I had been quite enjoying what I was reading - it was informative, I like metta meditation, I was feeling pretty happy. But on reading that paragraph I began to feel scared. I mean properly, my stomach clenched up, that kind of fear. I also sometimes feel scared when I think about doing metta for myself (generally, if I am doing metta, I am either doing it for someone else or, if it includes me, it's just as part of a group e.g. if I do metta for everyone on the train I'm on)Because of the practice of metta, we will fall asleep and wake up peacefully; we will have
pleasant dreams. On seeing our face or hearing our voice, others will love us and feel at one
with us. We will be loved by devas and brahmas and be protected by devas. There will be no
danger from weapons, fires, or poisons, which could cause death. Our minds will be calm and
steadfast, and our faces will be clear and cheerful. We will die with a clear, happy and
peaceful mind and will be reborn in the Brahma realm. Because of metta, we will be free from
desire and craving, and our anger and frustration will also disappear. We will be free from
jealousy and miserliness. Anxiety, longing, worry, grief and the desire to cry will cease to
arise. As a result of the practice of metta, we will be free from danger and will experience peace. Anyone who hates us will start to love or show us affection. People who speak ill of us
will start to praise us, and those who swear at us will speak kindly to us. Hostile persons or
enemies will become our friends. . . . [he continues to talk on this theme for a few more pages at least]
I know some teachers say it can be tricky for westerners (particularly with a Christian background) to develop metta for themselves, which is why I've not worried too much that I find it hard to do that. But I almost seem to be scared of good things happening to me? It's not just 'I find it easier to develop metta for my friends than for myself', it's actual fear.
At the same time, I'm not great at caring about other people either - it's not like I'm self-sacrificing or anything. I get quite resentful if I feel demands are being made of me, or at feeling guilt-tripped into stuff (and I can feel guilt-tripped without anyone actually doing anything, the guilt is built in). So it's not like this is excessive generosity manifesting itself
Any ideas or suggestions how to move past this?