The month of February connotes Valentine’s Day, which turns our thoughts to the topic of “love.” But what is love? Is it a feeling? A force? Is it God? Is it all there is? Trying to define “love” is like trying to define “infinity.” How do words come remotely close to capturing either?
If we use the concept so freely, I suggerst that we get honest and real with it. I find that we may know love best by knowing what it is not. By contrast, that is. We instinctively know when we are not feeling or behaving in a loving way. And perhaps, even more so, we know when someone else is not being loving toward us. At its best, this process of noticing helps us to tune ourselves up.
In “love relationships” it gets even more murky. What so often passes for love is actually obsession or addiction. Do you really love that person, or do you need them? Love is unconditional. Anything else is an imposter. To love is to embrace without clutching, to give versus to barter, and to allow instead of to control.
This is how we get real with love. Sound like a tall order? While it is not easy, it is possible, at least in glimpses anyway. And the key is self-reverence. To value oneself is to value others. To like oneself is to accept others as they are. To trust oneself is to allow others to be as they are. A strong and steady loving relationship with oneself opens the gateway for loving relationships with others and with all of life.
So on Valentine’s Day and all other days, get real with love. Practice awareness of love, and cultivate the relationship with Self that is the fertile soil within which love can grow. You do not need to define love when you are able to live it. You will just know. From my heart to yours, Happy Valentine’s (every)Day!