Before starting, concentrate on the breath for just a moment.

Now think of yourself as your own best friend, and extend to yourself the care and concern, the love and attention, that you would give a best friend. Embrace yourself as your own best friend.

Think of the person sitting nearest you. Be that person's best friend, extending your love and compassion, your care, and concern, to him or her.

Think of yourself as the best friend of everyone who is present, and extend your love and compassion, friendship, care and concern to everyone with you. Fill everyone and embrace everyone with your friendship.

Now think of yourself as your parents' best friend. Fill them with your love and concern, and embrace them with your friendship, letting them know how much you care.

Think of your nearest and dearest people, and be their best friend. Fill them with your care, your concern, and your love, embracing them with your friendship.

Now think of all your good friends. Let them feel that you are their best friend. Fill them with love, embrace them in friendship.

Think of anyone whom you find difficult to get along with or hard to love. Become that person's best friend, thereby removing all obstacles in your own heart. Embrace him or her with love and compassion.

Open your heart as wide as you can to as many people as possible, near and far. Let the feeling of care and concern, of love and compassion, reach out into the distance to as many beings as you can imagine, embracing them all in friendship.

Bring your attention back to yourself. Feel the happiness that comes from being your own best friend. The ease and harmony that you can feel comes from accepting yourself, caring for yourself, enjoying your own company, just like a best friend would.

May all beings be friends with each other.

Ayya Khema in When the Iron Eagle Flies