Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Finding Love: An Inside Job

I just read a great blog post, Unconditional Love is Old School: Here's Something Better!, by my good friend, Z Egloff. She talks about how the old term, unconditional love (as nice as it sounds), can be loaded because it contains the humanly tainted word love, or what she calls "the-word-that-can-end-in-tears."

This really is true, isn't it? We weary human beings are so sadly subject to twisting the word love and turning into something that in many cases becomes its opposite. What we consider love is sometimes just projection, or infatuation, or dependency, or fear of loss, or even addiction. Sure, there's usually some real love in there---and often times a lot of real love---but the alluring, feel-good quality of love can also be a stumbling block for so many of us.

What's to be done? Let's focus on the magnitude of what love really is. Love is bigger than a feeling. It is bigger than a relationship. Love is bigger than how any two (or two hundred) humans value each other. It is bigger than need or connection or romance. Love is our deepest nature; it's who we are underneath the layers and layers of humanity we wear. And in those grace-filled moments when we can see ourselves and others for who we really are, we feel true love. We feel our hearts expand in our chests, and life goes from black and white to technicolor.

Unfortunately, these moments come and go, and we're sometimes left grasping after them. Z's solution, which is mirrored in my own, is to view love (or joy) as an expansive personal experience that we carry around with us. Since it's our true nature, the presence of love is with us no matter what is happening around us. People may behave badly, friends and lovers may come and go, spouses may disappoint us, but as long as we're tapped into that source of love that exists in our hearts, we will thrive and we will light up the world around us.

So, this week I ask you to spend some time opening your heart. Place your hand on your chest right now, close your eyes, and just breathe in and out of your heart. If you start having thoughts, just let them sift down from your head into your heart center, where they will be kept safe until you need them. Just breathe in and out of your heart until you feel your connection with that calm, peaceful feeling of love. That's your truth. That's a glimpse of who you really are and who all those people in your life really are.

Enjoy this, knowing you can return there any time, and that the more often you do, the more love you will have in your life.