In this little garden home I have cherished in Bali, where I have had so much time to reflect upon things, I am pretty sure I have learned the secret to life. It is LOVE.
I know it is an overused word, in many ways, yet love is all there is. It is everything that matters.
I have, of course, experienced loving my children and my family, but I never knew what it was to love myself. I fought it and said that it was just a pseudo-religious philosophy based in selfishness. I went through a phase where I believed that giving of myself was everything there is. And, indeed, I had love for the cows and dogs that I helped, but deep inside, I was trying to deal with my own sense of inadequacy and the lack of love and care I had for myself. You see, I thought I was bad and knew I was imperfect, and that was not ok with me. I didn’t think of myself as a divine creation of God.
The path was a slippery slope, I thought the more I trashed myself, the more spiritual I could be – yet only the opposite is true. I am now filled with this deep feeling of love for myself, my family and those around me and it brings great joy to life. I am learning to tap into it whenever I feel discouraged. What would our world be like if everyone felt this? If we could be gentle with ourselves, imagine how much more kind and patient we could be with others.
Of course, we are imperfect, and for some reason, we choose only to look at that and devalue ourselves profoundly in the process. We keep our eyes focused on our faults and failures as if there is some honor in doing this. I believe it stems from the philosophy in which we are raised, the concept of “original sin,” that we are all “sinners in the eyes of God.” This is a perversion of the Christian message and could not be farther from the truth.
I have learned in my travels to the East, there is no philosophy based on dishonoring self. Human beings were created by the Divine and, hence, are fundamentally divine in nature. This is a startling revelation, and it affects the human psyche on all levels. If we are born divine, then what happened that we are not perfect? It is because we have forgotten who we are, our lives are then spent working toward awakening the spirit to its true nature.
Understanding this philosophy opens the door for a whole new regard for self, and not in a selfish way but in a recognition, a coming home to the self. We are fortunate to be born with the capacity for great love.
We are all looking to receive love, and we have the ability to give it. It seems that all of life thrives on love. Even plants have shown, in studies, the ability to respond to loving thoughts by accelerated growth. How is this possible?
Love is the fundamental energy that permeates all of life. There is an endless supply, and it is all here for us, all of the time. It already exists, we have only to tap into it. It is the source of all life and the energy that makes it live and move and have its being. We have no choice but to respond to it because we are built from it, and its presence is essential for growth and happiness.
Now I know that I can reach inside for this anytime it is needed.
I never have to worry that there isn’t enough or that I will run out.
It is endless.
It is open to me. It is me.
It is God.