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Unconditional Love – Healing and Discovering Pristine Peace and Happiness -Part 1

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Getting to the Heart of Unconditional Love

One of my favorite “fiction”  books is Running From Safety by Richard Bach.  The tag-line declares it “an adventure of the spirit”. The back-jacket poses this enticing question: “If the child we were asked us today for the best we learned from living, what would we tell and what would we discover in return?”

The book chronicles the author’s healing journey as an adult through a metaphysical encounter  with himself as a child.   Richie, his 9 year old child self, emerges from imprisonment within the psyche of the author and through thoughtful and honest dialogue, Richie begins his journey to integration as part of Richard’s present life. It is a sensitively told story of universal experience about our journey to wholeness. As we gather the parts of us we have abandoned at various times in our lives, we begin to live more aware and conscious of all of who we are and to remember that at our core we are both wise and infinitely loving.   As Richard unfolds this message,  his life transforms. He unravels the knots of restriction that had paralyzed his heart and he exhales into self acceptance,  his infinite potential for connection and the safety that comes from trusting the eternal presence of unconditional love.

Activating unconditional love through unconditional giving – the relationship issue

Activating unconditional love in our lives is really a two-step process – letting go of past grievances and making the conscious decision to actively love every experience. In a very powerful handbook, Your Body Speaks Your Mind, author Debbie Shapiro suggests that we have a choice to be thankful and loving always. She indicates that opening our heart to love and allowing love into “every crack and crevice of our lives enables us to take risks and embrace the unknown”.   In my opinion, that means always being ready to give and that is where the rubber meets the road in this quest to be unconditionally loving. It asks for selflessness. It requires taking risk. It suggests that if there is a decision to be made between holding back our love or giving it, that we choose for the latter.

The arena where this practice can be most exercised is in relationships – primary, friendships, co-workers, with our children – all relationships. In our culture the perceptions around relationship more often are about ‘ keeping score’,  fulfilling a list of how the other person should look, talk, act, and having our personal needs met  than it is about true connection and regard for the other.  We seem to be so ‘on guard’ for fear of losing  something of ourselves in relationship that we forget to give! We often place an inordinate amount of importance on our egoic identity as if loss of that is certain death. Yet if you think about it, giving isn’t giving away parts of ourselves. It is simply honoring our mutual humanity by respecting the needs of the other. Besides, we (the we that really matters and that is our true ‘us’-ness)  always was and always will be completely intact. Our soul and vitality cannot be broken.  It is in giving that we live active unconditional love. Giving is the hallmark of trust that we won’t break and that we will be taken care of if we follow our heart’s bidding.

The eternal pool of giving – the place of absolute, undisturbed peace and happiness

I recall in meditation one day struggling with this notion of measured love versus walking the path of unconditional love. Past experiences cause a shutting down of our hearts in the false belief of protection against hurt and it is an understandable reaction to loss. Yet this safe way has never seemed the whole answer…it seems more isolating than healing. In that meditation I was ‘handed’ the message that the pool of giving is infinite – we don’t run out of giving – we simply just need to return to it and replenish our giving Selves. The image of that infinite pool of giving stays with me and I return to that pool often. It nourishes me, soothes me and accesses that place of absolute undisturbed peace and happiness. It is my buffer against the judgments and admonishments of the cultural norms that suggest there is a limit to giving and to love – give too much and you lose. …. not so! It is about connecting with the heart of the other’s heart…the place of unconditional love that sees only the light of love and regard that exists there.

I watched a friend lovingly make a full array of delicious food for his daughter’s graduation celebration. He spent the whole evening engaged in his labor of love – that is uncondiitonal love. It is when you ask for nothing in return – love is not confined to a balance sheet. It is not a bank account that eventually is spent to deficit. It is an open space that embraces  every opportunity to be a source of giving. Unconditional love is giving without reservation, without expectation, without fear of loss. Does this kind of love have risk – yes – by its very nature love is risk but it is measured against the constant flow of contact with that endless pool of giving we are always  connected to…..our happiness and well-being is connected to the amount we give, not the amount we get.

Living today from unconditional love

Again, quoting from Debbie Shapiro’s book – When we open our hearts and give with love…”We do not need to turn our backs on our neighbors because they are a different race or practice a different religion; we can accept the differences while recognizing our shared humanity. In place of fear, see a challenge that can be met with creative awareness. Fear contracts and pushes away; it holds tight and denies change or movement. Love is expansive and all-embracing; it welcomes change as an expression of all life.”  Perhaps we all could use more love and acceptance of each other especially in the caustic climate afoot in America today. It is fear at its most destructive!

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If you want to understand the true nature of unconditional love, see this movie – Grand Torino. It will make you laugh, cry and understand how it is that opening our heart unconditionally changes everything.


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3 Responses

  1. Time can heal all wounds, and having someone there showing him unconditional love will only help him. Engage

  2. Great post! I’ll subscribe right now wth my feedreader software!

  3. Great post!! I especially liked:

    “… Besides, we (the we that really matters and that is our true ‘us’-ness) always was and always will be completely intact. Our soul and vitality cannot be broken. It is in giving that we live active unconditional love. Giving is the hallmark of trust that we won’t break and that we will be taken care of if we follow our heart’s bidding.”

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