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“All you need is love,” The Beatles
In case you haven’t noticed it yet, our world, and every little thing in it, is starved — emaciated — for love.
In many cases, we walk around in such a numbed daze we forget that Real Love is the very thing for which we were designed, the only think that will truly satisfy us down to the essence of our being.
And yet, we are willing to settle for so much less.
We are willing to settle for lust or infatuation, which are professionals at disguising themselves as love, only to leave a trail of devastation and confusion in their wake.
We are willing to settle for material things, for accumulating more and more and more, until we find ourselves with all our belongings, still not satisfied with what we have, and probably suffering from the overwhelm of all the clutter around us.
We are willing to settle for the fleeting pleasures of praise and admiration, to enjoy our “15 minutes of fame,” which, once it is passed, still leaves a gaping hole of unquenchable emptiness inside.
Ultimately, none of those people or things or accolades we reach for in desperation can truly satisfy in a lasting, healthy way.
They will always crumble. Always.
Until we understand we are built for Divine Love, and only Divine Love will bring us peace, we will continue in this vicious, miserable cycle of looking for acceptance in the world outside ourselves.
Once we have recognized this Love from which we came and to which we return is accessible to us, whenever we need it, we can begin to change our pattern of daily living.
Before I began writing this morning, I went online and checked my social media messages and email inbox.
One of the (too many) things I subscribe to is Daily Om, which offers practical spiritual ways to live a better life.
In this week’s meditation, the subject was learning how to “send love ahead to your day.” As I read it, I was struck personally by how much I needed to see it myself, as I have a tendency to get caught up in minor irritations, and allow them to accumulate and ruin my day.
This week’s Daily Om meditation teaches us how to nip that kind of experience in the bud. It takes practice, for sure. As I tried to walk myself through the meditation, I found myself resisting it.
All the more reason to make it a priority.
For those not used to it, the language might sound a little “woo woo.” Focus on the message. Individually and collectively, we can only benefit from this practice. Look where the alternative has gotten us.
Here is the “Daily Om” reflection, slightly edited:
“Upon waking, many people consider the coming day with trepidation. Because of the natural human tendency to focus on what we fear or dislike, it is easy to unwittingly send a message of unease into the future that negatively impacts the quality of your day. However, while our lives are busy and frequently replete with challenges, they are also rich with joy and experiences worth savoring. We can attract (these natural gifts) into our lives by starting each day with a message of love. When you send love ahead to your day, that love will manifest itself in your interpersonal interactions, your professional endeavors, and your domestic duties. Tasks and circumstances once made trying by your own anxiety are transformed by your love, and you will find yourself approaching life’s subtle nuances with great affection. Each morning, when you have cast off the fog of sleep, take several deep, grounding breaths and reaffirm the love you have for yourself. Speaking a loving, self-directed blessing aloud enables you to access and awaken the reservoir of tenderness in your soul. Before you leave the comfortable warmth of your bed, be sure to tell (the Holy Spirit) that you are eager and ready to receive the blessings it has set aside for you. (Place your hand on your heart.) Then as you prepare to meet the day, visualize yourself first saturated by and then surrounded with a warm and soft loving light. Gradually widen the circle of this light until you are able to send it ahead into your future. If you are commuting to work, send love to the roads upon which you will drive, your fellow commuters, and your parking space. If you have colleagues who arrive at your workplace before you, send them love. Likewise, a day spent being a parent or addressing household chores can benefit from the sentiment that precedes you. Sending love ahead to everyone you will meet and everything you will do can ensure that your day is suffused with grace. If you have difficulty sending love to those situations and individuals you deem particularly frustrating, consider that the warmth and tenderness you project can change your life for the better. Each morning, in sending this love, you will exercise your power to control the ambiance of your existence and to color your day with positivity.”
- SPIRIT MATTERS is a weekly column that examines spirituality. Contact Jerrilyn Zavada at firstname.lastname@example.org to share how you engage your spirit in your life and community.