The Independence of Spirit
In this Issue A State of Independence A Thought for Your Practice ...and Facts are…
February is here and I hear that Cupid has placed a large order of arrows to shoot into the unsuspecting butts of couples everywhere. OK, that is about all the “traditional” Valentines you are going to get here!
I have written about six different versions of this newsletter this month but trashed them all because they just did not come across as authentic and of value. I went from silly Valentines fluff to a history of Valentines in general to a REAL dark piece that would have been a better Halloween issue (not sure where that one came from).
Instead, I thought since the central theme of Valentines is supposed to be love, that will be the subject in differing forms, or at least what Love really is. Love is not about sex, infatuation or looking good with a pretty other on our arm, it is a tapping into the source of life, the motivating energy of creation and the beginning of finding our true source link with God.
Love is that one emotion that I sometimes doubt actually is an emotion. Emotions can take us to places that we never imagined and so can Love, but in my personal experience, only Love can make one step out of their own personal world and do something completely altruistic.
The Apostle John wrote “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13) Only Love can bring this out of all those sleeping souls we see around us all the time. I find that when we truly Love that we attract the universe to sit at our feet and become our partner instead of our adversary.
Look at small children and pets, they love unconditionally and fully until they have it trained out of them. A Pit Bull has a reputation for being a dangerous and vicious dog, but it actually is an amazing family pet, it actually has to be trained to be mean and dangerous to people. We as people come into the world loving and learn to be otherwise.
Here’s wishing you a Happy Valentines and all the love you could possible handle and then more!
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How can we give true love to our families and other “loved” ones if we cannot love ourselves?
Loving oneself is not about becoming a vain, self-absorbed individual but about accepting one for who and what they are. If there are things you do not like about yourself, you can modify them, a new haircut, a diet program or something but even then you have to be able to love and accept yourself.
So here are a couple of homework assignments:
- When you have the time, take a sheet of paper and divide it down the center. In the left column, write down all the things you love about yourself and in the right those things you do not, or even hate bout yourself.
First, look at the things you do not like or hate. What is it about each of them that keeps you from accepting and/or embracing them?
For myself I had many issues about my body, I was too fat, I did not have a “handsome” face, etc. I decided finally to do something about the weight issues and embarked on a weight-control program. I started to watch my eating more closely and began exercising on a regular basis. I lost ten pounds and liked what I saw in the mirror much more than what I had previously, I was headed in the right direction for me (I have since lost a total of 40 pounds and put on a fair amount of muscle so that I am REALLY liking what I see when I pass the mirror).
As far as my face went, when I started to see the changes in my face from the weight loss, I was much happier with it as well. I will never push Brad Pitt or George Clooney of People Magazine’s “Sexiest Man” list but I actually find myself cute with what looks back in the mirror. I also noticed that the facial features that tended to predominant in the men I found attractive already existed in my face if I was just willing to see them.
Perfection is something that is taught from outside ourselves. Know that you are perfection incarnate and that your issues can be corrected through work or perception. Perception is most often the source of our self-depreciating views of ourselves.
- If the above is more than you can handle at the moment, remember that you are a creation of a perfect being that does not make mistakes. How can you be anything less than perfection in that case?
Instead of dwelling on your “perceived” faults, focus on your positive points and start there. Do not spend too much time worrying about others thoughts on the subject. In time and with a bit of study we find that most of outside perception is more about them then you. I know a beautiful young lady that used to feel absolutely terrible about herself to the point where she was considering suicide.
Many around her tried to reassure her that she was actually quite adorable but she could not or would not see it. A mutual friend took her out for a makeover and it was amazing the transformation in perception that occurred with just a change of clothing, makeup and hairstyle. She had taken herself to such a dark place that she had contemplated ending things when what she needed were just a few simple changes.
Will this simple of a change work for everyone? Of course not, but change can be a great catalyst for opening our perception to a shift in judgment, not only in ourselves but others.
In many traditions we describe God as Love and creation as a manifestation of that Love. I find that if we truly meditate on love and its power we are taken to places that are unavailable otherwise.
One of my earliest experiences of Spirit that started me on the path that I have been following for 29 years (figuring that one out was an eye-opener) involved my being opened to an experience of presence that was filled with nothing but love. I am not going to go into the details at the moment, but love would have been the LAST thing I expected to come out with.
When people speak about love, they often are referring to infatuation or severe like, sometimes we think of the intimacy of a relationship as love and sadly some people associate sex as love. Love can encompass all of these but love can also include people that you consider completely unlikable.
True love is about accepting and praising everyone for who and where they are in their growth. Those that are further on their growth are often easy to love but when you can love that most annoying neighbor and the “bad” man you hear about on the news.
If we truly love, we find that it is about love and nothing else. Love is not about their “being” anything but what they are. Love is not about acceptance of their actions or thoughts or their acceptance of yours. Love is not about trading tit-for-tat or negotiating.
Love is only truly Love when it is given freely with no strings attached, no obligations on the receiver and given for the purpose of giving it alone. Anything less is at best only partial love and likely even less.
When we give Love, true Love, whatever happens becomes a gift in our experience and an offering of the Spirit. Give Love to those you have the hardest time with and see how it changes your perception of both them and of yourself.
Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.
Robert A. Heinlein
Love is a promise, love is a souvenir, once given never forgotten, never let it disappear.
I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.
There are four questions of value in life… What is sacred? Of what is the spirit made? What is worth living for, and what is worth dying for? The answer to each is the same. Only love.
as “Don Juan deMarco”
God must love us, why else would he put up with us?