Metta or Loving-Kindness Prayer Practice From Buddhism
Sit down, quiet your mind, and beginning with
May I be free from fear.
May I be free from suffering.
May I be happy.
May I be filled with loving-kindness.
Next, focus on someone you love and say the same prayer on that person's behalf.
Then pray in the same way for a neutral person, someone you don't know.
Finally, pray for someone you dislike. In doing so, you nourish the seeds of kindness and love in yourself and then let it radiate outward.
This prayer is especially useful for someone who doesn't believe in God, but still feel a curiosity or pull toward prayer. According to Hogen Bays, a priest in the Zen Community of Oregon, "the function of prayer is to connect us with that which is greater than our small self." Metta does exactly that.
Source: Nancy Haught in The Oregonian