Who & What Do You Love?

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I’m speaking this Sunday about what I have learned during the last 80 years. Turns out what I’ve learned is that we should worship Love, not Power. And if that makes me sound like the Great Oz, so be it.

We all desire love. That’s a built-in desire and we do not thrive unless we have it. We depend on survival basics but that’s just the bottom rung of life.  We all desire much more than survival! We desire love and we will do a lot of things to get it.

Cooperation is one form of love and we depend on it. Very few of us are completely self-sufficient. We live in groups and we cooperate. Whether we are sharing a taxi on 44th St. or washing our clothes at the African village well, we are obliged to cooperate with neighbors to live.

Believe it or not, all our infrastructure is based on community cooperation and love. Even our freeways are conceived and born in Love.

Love comes in many forms including parent- child love, romantic love, partnership love, God love, friendship love, community love, and love attached to activity.

One way or another, most of our life energy goes to harvesting love. Do you love the Lakers? How about old movies? Jane Austen? Baseball games? Surfing? Do you love hot dogs? Fancy hotels? Just for the Love of it, make a list of all the people, things and activities you love or have loved. You will be surprised.

I can hear readers asking, “What about the bad people?”  I’m not The Great Oz and I don’t pretend to  know why  there is evil.  However, I do know that people get off track and do incomprehensible and weird things to get love or a substitute for no love.

Think about it. Some people hope to trade self-respect for love. Some try to amass all the world’s money to induce others to love them. Some try to rule the world so they play King of the Mountain and attempt to command love. What mistakes have you made?

Most of us have figured out worshipping money or those other weird ideas won’t get us love by the time we get to the New Thought teaching. What missing the mark (or sinning) does is provide signals that scream, “Change course!”

If you are reading this, you have heard that God is Love and runs things through Spiritual Law. You may also have heard that you will have to be love before you can attract love.

Once you get hold of that concept, it is relatively easy to express love by being nice, being appreciative, and being loving toward others. What’s more, it works. Thank you notes please people and gain you more customers. Good listeners have more friends. Friendly people get more invitations to the party.

Acting as if” is a great beginning. You  will soon be so loving you want to clean up your act and be more sincere. You can spend time in prayer, introspection and meditation to uncover any critical thought patterns that slow down the advent of love. You can pray to release negative ideas and accept love also. Prayer works.

If you are serious, you may, (as I did) find you have an unconscious belief that you are not loveable. If you have a voice in your head that is constantly saying, “Not good enough,” that will definitely slow down the attainment of your dreams.

Understand this. If we don’t love ourselves, we send the wrong the message to the Universe and we will not be able to attract the desired Love into our lives.

Loving oneself is an idea that frightens some people away and allows others to condemn us as heathens. They ask, “Aren’t good people supposed to be humble? Yes. We are humble because we know God lives in all people. God loves us all and sees us as perfect, whole and complete all the time. God does not judge us and it is not our business to judge others. Our task is to recognize God everywhere, especially in ourselves and all others.

If you know God is Love and God lives within you, then you must know you are lovable. Nothing else makes sense. The trick is to love yourself exactly as you are and be willing to change at the same time.

Here’s what loving yourself as you are and being willing to change might look like… You want to lose weight, and you know it means diet and exercise. There is no magic about weight loss. It is all math. But there is magic in the self-talk.

What are you saying to yourself? Do you call yourself fat?  God sees you as perfect so Love will say yes and send you more fat. Do you promise to love yourself when you are a size 8? Love will agree to the delay. Change your self-talk.Instead of condemning yourself as a fat cow, look in the mirror and say, “You are a beautiful expression of God and you deserve the best. I know you love yourself enough to eat healthy foods.”

After years of struggle, I stopped condemning  and began praising my healthy choices. Eventually, I released over a hundred pounds. I changed my diet because I changed my mind about loving myself.

Loving yourself is a basic idea that is the foundation for creating true happiness, true wealth, true health and beautiful relationships. Love is your Divine Inheritance. You deserve the best. What’s more, you will achieve whatever you can truly envision, believe and accept.That is Spiritual Law in action.

Most of us come from backgrounds where the self-love message were mixed or missing. We may have to work on gaining self-esteem. Some  may need to consciously forgive parents who taught us false, self-defeating ideas they believed.

Let’s remember we can choose to accept or discard beliefs because we are using the Power for Good that we call God  Dr. Ernest Holmes, author of the Science of Mind Textbook  used many names for God. I love the words Divine Givingness because that demonstrates that free flowing Love is the nature of life.

What will Divine Givingness give you? The answer is always … whatever you can envision, and mentally and emotionally believe and accept. Once you get the idea that God is Love and Divine Givingness is working in your life, you can consciously use Spiritual Law.  That‘s the Power For Good – the Divine Givingness at work.

Ernest Holmes was truly very loving person. He knew his stuff. He knew God as Love and he knew himself as an expression of God. What’s more, he knew you and me as beautiful, unique expressions of Love. He lived with a sense of connection to God as Universal Love and to God expressing in himself and others as Individualized Love.

Dr. Holmes said, ‘Love is the grandest healing and drawing power on earth.  It is the very reason for our being.”

Ask Yourself

Who and What Do I Love?

Do I want more Love? What Kind? From Where?

What do I need to believe?

How do I plan to gain the beliefs I need?

 

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Butterfly Kisses

 As children, we leaned close to our friend’s cheek and fluttered our eyelashes. That produced a very light, soft touch that we called a butterfly kiss. We also rubbed noses and that was called an Eskimo kiss. Of course, that was before TV.

Sometimes a soft, light touch is a wonderful expression of love. Whether it is a sweet smile, flowers, a phone call, a small gift or a thank you note, it can light up my day. Or your day. Or our day.

I received so many brief messages of love from people last week that it was as if many, many butterflies dropped by long enough to delight me with a kiss. It reminded me of being a child and feeling as though all is well and all will be well. Thank you for your kind words.

Being willing to show another person that we care for them brings a big payoff for very little expenditure of energy. It is easy for some and a true talent. Those people light up our lives without even knowing it.

Some people never seem to learn how to show that they care. They may feel love but they don’t express it with a light touch. Life would be wonderful if we all  learned to dust others with butterfly kisses.

Not only does letting others know we care about them make the recipient feel good, it also draws happiness toward the person giving the gift.

The beauty of a butterfly kiss is that it is a deft touch, both delighting and surprising the recipient. It isn’t an opening move in a bargain. Nor is it the first clause in a contract. Butterfly kisses are not promises of undying devotion, simply a sweet moment of appreciation.

When we discover that someone is thinking of us or remembering a good time we had together, we are delighted but it is a momentary pleasure. It is not a promise of lifelong commitment. It is simply an expression of love that flies in the window, lights on your shoulder for a moment and moves on.

Developing a light touch in relationships is a good idea. We cause ourselves pain when we think that love means getting to keep everyone by our sides forever. So much difficulty in life comes from having unrealistic expectations of others. Loving someone does not mean doing everything they want you to. Nor does it mean that you get to own them.

Since I have had the honor of being a Religious Science teacher for many years, I have received many butterfly kisses from people who were in my life and then moved on. I didn’t need to keep them all forever. I am always pleased to hear they are doing well. I am happy they have touched in for a moment and then flown away to their new lives.

It does not feel like loss to let them go. My ambition was never to keep them as appendages, but to help them find their own path. As any good teacher or parent knows, success is seeing the younger ones emerge from the cocoon and be their own beautiful selves.

Even happily married, long time committed couples find they must have other friendships to keep their lives open and alive. Those light and bright relationships with friends at work or church mean a lot because they allow us to find common ground with someone other than our mate.

Monogamous relationships often find it is simpler to stick with friendships between their same sex but we all need more than one good relationship. Men have bonded with each other over sports events and women have chatted in the kitchen from time immemorial. While we may not use the words love, we can still let the other people in our lives know they are appreciated.

Usually, we look for friends who allow us to express some aspect of our character that our mates don’t share. While it’s hard to imagine my son-in-law’s motorcycle club saying they love each other, they obviously enjoy the laughter and fascination with travel that they share. A good laugh or a clap on the back is a kind of butterfly kiss.

This week, ask yourself how you express your love to friends and family? Do you find ways to let people know you care for them? Do you send people articles in the news you think they will enjoy? Do you make it a point to call once in a while? How about inviting someone to do something with you? These are all expressions that are light, deft touches of love.

Take a look at your relationships. What do the words, “I love you,” mean to you? Do you have the ability to enjoy a relationship with someone else and not insist that the other person be in agreement all the time? I hope so because no one has exactly the same experiences that you have. If you only want friends who are exactly like you, that will be painful. You are unique.

Many people are heavy handed in relationships. Even simple friendships take on aspects of melodrama when you are stuck in the 7th grader behavior of “best friends”. Life is rich and full with plenty of people who can be one of your best friends if you open up to the joy of diversity.

I think sometimes we are afraid to express our pleasant, loving feelings for one another because we are afraid that too much will be expected. The art of telling someone you care for them without agreeing to be best friends forever can be developed with practice.

Begin by thinking of butterflies. They don’t sign on for a lifetime when they land on your shoulder or onto the nearest flower. They light, flutter, bring joy and love and then fly on to the next stop. That doesn’t make them shallow, it makes them beautiful creatures who bring joy for a moment and move on.

Ask Yourself

Would I like more friends?

Did I receive any butterfly kisses this week?

Shall I send a butterfly kiss to anyone today?

What new acknowledgement of my love can I express today?


Life Is Not Exactly A Bowl Of Cherries

Some things are more difficult as one ages. The thing that is always there but seldom talked about is how much closer it is until curtain time. One day, not so long ago, I realized that I had more dead friends than live ones.

I sometimes miss my friends but I am not aware of fearing death. I long ago dropped any fear of punishment for my sins beyond their natural outcomes on Planet Earth. I do believe that some sort of consciousness continues after the Spirit leaves the body. I believe this, at least partly, because of my dead friends.

The fascinating thing about my departed friends is that they are still part of my life. Hardly a night goes by that I don’t have a conversation or visit from one or the other in my dreams. The dreams are always pleasant visits and sometimes I get simple messages.

Do I believe in ghosts? Yes, I believe that a spiritual energy of Love continues to operate in loving ways that could be perceived as ghostly – but not scary. For years, I have said in Memorial services, “Love never dies” and I believe that is true.

Whether you believe in life after death or ghostly energy or reincarnation – or all of the above – is not important. What is important is that you know your choice to express love is important long after you are gone from your body. Lives that express love, famous or not, lighten and brighten the world.

Feeling love makes us happy. The more love we circulate, the happier we are. Those are simple truths to grasp and live as deeply as possible. The choice to love or fear is a common choice for all of us. Choose love whenever you can.

If you are reading this, chances are great that you are part of a human chain of love. You are bound to others who seek, express and enjoy love through the law of attraction.  Some of you may feel the need for more love.

The answer to attracting more love into your life is to express what you already have learned more consistently. Be a major link in your chain of love heritage. You learned to love when you were younger from someone who learned when he or she was younger. A chain of love is eternal.

Love passes from one human to another. It is the most beautiful contagion we have. You are a result of the love you have chosen and are now choosing in your life. You have received and chosen love. You are now passing that love on to others. So love never dies.

Isn’t it wonderful that we don’t ever have to reinvent love? It is always waiting, in smiling repose for us to discover, enjoy, use and pass along to others. That phrase, in smiling repose is a quote from my friend, RW Emerson  who visits me in books. His love continues through me and countless other Transcendentalists.

I start teaching the Emerson class next week and he is much on my mind but he has been on my mind in some manner since I first encountered his blessed words in college in the 1960’s.

A writer and philosopher like Emerson is direct and absolute proof that love never dies. He has impacted American thinking since his beginning essay, Nature, was published in 1836. He was a direct influence on my loving mentor, Ernest Holmes, who read him constantly as a young man.  New Thought, in general, is an outgrowth of Emersonian  Mind and Emersonian Love.

Emerson was a great philosopher who wrote abstract ideas. Everywhere he looked, he saw the OverSoul. I am much more apt to find love particularized in communion with loved ones. The beauty of love is that it can be abstract or personal, but it is always the same love.

God is love and the desire to give and receive love is embedded in the original equipment of being human. Love is present in all of us and our task is to reveal it as we travel along life’s journey. It is not a race to be won nor is it a journey to be lost. It is what life is all about at a deep, spiritual level.

We don’t invent love and we can’t hoard it. We simply reveal love to each other, exchanging it without a thought of using it to get a return on our expenditure. Anyone who attempts to use love to get something back is going to be disappointed.

I know about that particular form of disappointment. I didn’t realize it at the time but my love that was used to manipulate was counterfeit in the sense that I attempted to use it as a commodity. Love must be freely given to be real.

Another lesson I’ve learned is that love does not mean that you must let the other person walk all over you. If you want to be loving, you must model self-love and set boundaries.

What do you love right now in your life? Please share you comments on this blog.

Right now, I am loving to be writing this blog. I am loving to have so many wonderful people in my life. I also love that I’ve let go of most ambition and most attachment to material stuff. I’ve definitely learned that cherries require spitting pits out and life is not about bowls full of them but about the free flowing exchange of Love.

Ask Yourself

What do I love most right now?

Who taught me to love?

Who am I teaching to love?