Throughout my life, people and religion went to great lengths teaching and preaching that I should try to be kind and loving. As a result, I’ve spent the majority of my life trying to be kind and more loving; trying to be that loving, compassionate person I sensed was inside but for whatever reason just could not come to the surface.
By my own internal standards, I failed every day.
Sure, I was a nice person and it is possible some people may have experienced me as “loving”, but it’s not about others… it’s never about others. It is always about my experience of myself and I somehow knew there was more.
The desire to be more kind and loving stems from the background sense of not being good enough cultivated by our experience of separation. This desire, while appearing admirable on the surface, actually limits our potential for experiencing Love on the deepest levels. Trying to be kind, among other things, involves effort while experiencing or being kind is effortless. The practice of trying can be quite detrimental to the experience of true joining to which many of the world’s faiths and teachings point.
Whenever I was willing to look inward and be honest, I always became aware of a deeper longing to join with another person. I had no idea what that would look like or how it would feel. I knew it was there and I wasn’t able to let it live in any of my relationships, even those that lasted just a few seconds; like standing in line with someone at the grocery store for example. Any time I brought awareness to my less-than-loving experiences I always recognized I fell just a little short; I left just a bit of me unavailable and I promised myself that “next time” I would be more loving, kinder.
Consider what is taking place. We define a “loving” experience based on our experiences in the past and use those to gauge every experience of love we have. By deciding, or trying to be kind and loving, we are limiting the other and ourselves to our definition of what is and is not a loving experience. Now the rules of engagement are set, limiting us both to an interaction based solely on our interpretation and the past without any opportunity for true, unguarded love to surface naturally.
If we can become free of our need to be loving or kind and let go of the notion that they (other people) need to be loved – if we can learn to just let two people be together with no approval seeking or the like, we remove the obstacles to love’s presence already in us. We are then free to be totally loving and caring human beings and that love will manifest in whatever form or words that are needed at the time.
I have to keep in mind that I do not know what Love is and thinking I do sets expectations. Those expectations limit my experiences.
The love of which I speak is a love that our minds cannot comprehend, let alone intentionally express. The love of which I speak can only come from a place outside of ‘mind’ that flows through us when we finally get out of its way. Nothing we do because we are trying to be kind or loving is it.
How do we do this? For some it’s a journey that takes time and for others it happens instantly. In either case, one way to begin is by looking inward. Self-awareness by bringing attention to our experience, by noticing our motivation if there is any behind our actions is a powerful first step. In Who Would I Be Without it is a journey that takes time for Nathan to discover that his expectations and his false need to be more than he thinks he is are exactly what prevents him from knowing love on this level. No trying, no expectations, just pure innocence free to express and be with self and another.
The Love that is already inside each of us is free to flow into the world, and it knows exactly what to say or do every time!
Check out Who Would I Be Without and other books and CDs at www.JamesPatrickMcDonald.com
Visit our FREE Resources and maybe read a sample from Who Would I Be Without at www.JamesPatrickMcDonald.com
Contact Me or Join our Mailing List for book and speaking engagement announcements. I try to respond to all contacts as soon as i can and i love hearing from you about what you like regarding my sharing and my work.