What would happen if you decided to love Life in ways that it loves you? Certainly, you won’t be able to love as exquisitely as Life, but any attempt will garner to you Life’s enthusiastic response. If you attempt to undertake this endeavour, a whole new relationship to Life will open up to you. You’ll be introduced to new levels of experience through which you would begin to sense Life as it truly is. But, see for yourself what happens when you love Life as it does you. I encourage you to this marvellous adventure of Love so that you can experience all that Life within you is so eager to reveal!
First, before you embark upon this adventure, it is imperative that you understand how the love that Life so freely offers looks and expresses so that you know how to express your love in return. Love is the invisible foundation upon which everything arises, is sustained, and from which everything evolves. Its most fundamental way of expression in your life is through absolute and exuberant presence. Love is always present to you: beholding, allowing, celebrating…. transforming. It is in presence that you will begin your journey of Love.
I’ve often had the sense that I was missing out on Life. I’ve realized that I’m generally not really present to it at all. Rarely still or present to the gifts of the moment, my mind is usually tied up in thoughts of the past or the future, or its wandering within well practiced and programmed habits of thought. Neglecting the actual space of true presence and so, missing out on Life’s moment, I decided that I wanted to practice changing these patterns. Last summer I was asked to dog sit and stay with him in his home for a couple of weeks. I decided that for those two weeks I was just going to allow myself to be: no planning, no worrying about or trying to construct my future… just being. In a beautiful house and with a dog that I adored, I spent a lot of my time outdoors – walking, basking. During those times, I would just observe what was around me. I was truly learning to behold, I was bringing presence to the moment and even to my own awareness. I found that by observing and just being a witness, I tuned into a stillness, and within that stillness a fresh vibrance pervaded everything I encountered, even myself! I was experiencing the effects of presence; I was in life and I felt fresh and Alive!
Love never turns away, it is endlessly present and without judgement and in the stillness of presence, I discovered that space of non judgement. I first started to give thought to the idea of presence after I read the book, A New Earth, by Eckhart Tolle; in it he touches upon the idea of learning to observe without attaching thought to that which we are observing. The first time I practiced this I was on a streetcar; it was stopped at a traffic light and I looked out the window and saw a homeless woman surrounded by her bags. Usually, my first inclination would be to judge what I was seeing as tragic and then feel the pain of that. But this time I just beheld. I refrained from attaching any thought to what I was looking at by simply not engaging with any thought that arose, rather I let them pass right on through. As I practiced this, I began to experience something deeper and more authentic in what was presenting in front of me. I was sensing past the surface scenario and connecting to an alive and vibrant energy that was running through it. By putting my thoughts and my judgements aside, I experienced the Life that was actually there. Within something that I would have normally judged as bleak, Life’s ecstatic nature was bursting into that space of stillness and non judgement, and I actually felt joy as I remained still and present to that which I was beholding.
To step a little deeper into presence I’ve had to push past the labels that we’ve been taught to attach to everything, the labels that incite judgement. Labels engage our minds in incomplete, often static, information; they separate us from those very things that we are labelling. After the point that we label or name something, our vision becomes dimmed to what’s wholly there, leaving little opportunity to know its most authentic energy. Unlike other species, we humans tend to relate more to the information, the history, and the judgement that labels provide and this obscures the pure essence and fluid energy of the thing, being, circumstance, or person that is presenting before us. Instead of allowing the infinite variability of its energy to inform us of what it will, we allow the labels that we attach to provide us with the bulk of our information. I think we do this because we become attached to our need to think that we already know what something or who someone is; we require the comfort and security in the feeling of continuity that that provides more than we desire the wonder and mystery of what the energy of the moment will reveal. However, to gain a more authentic knowledge of something or someone, we have to be able to move beyond the label, with its built in biases, judgements, and limited information, and we have to learn comfort with its infinite and perpetually expanding expressions of being. Only then can we engage the Life of that being or situation, and only then, we experience true reality.
Loosening my grip on labels has enabled me to really behold that which presents; not only that, it has helped me to discover true allowing and the transformation born of it. Love is completely allowing. There is no scale of good or bad, right or wrong that it measures by. It has no needs to be met from outside of itself, nor preferences to be fulfilled – it is complete within Itself. Since Love has no needs, it doesn’t require anything to be different than what it is being. Allowing all things to be as they are and without any demand for change, Love allows what is, its existence and full expression and in doing so, it validates all that yearns acknowledgement. Rather than ever disapproving or fighting against, Love beholds, allows, and celebrates, revelling in the liberation born of allowing to all, their recognition, thus, making way for the spontaneous transformation and natural evolution inherent in every being and every situation.
Love is Celebration! Love celebrates all that it beholds and all that it allows, celebrating everythings right to be and to express all that they “be.” In spite of the form any expression may take, Love celebrates its very allowance of that expression, holding full confidence in the inherent trajectory towards wholeness and evolution that is within everything. Most of all though, Love celebrates your presence – your beholding, your allowance, your celebrating… your love, for in your willingness to be present in these ways, you get to experience the ecstatic, transformative, vibrant, and jubilant nature of Life, and in this, Life’s finds its greatest delight.
Absolute and exuberant presence: beholding, allowing, celebrating, this is the Love that Life so freely gives to you. So, what would happen if you decided to love Life like this in return? I challenge you to see for yourself. Bring presence to your moments, bring it to your own awareness; behold all that presents, both, within yourself and all that presents from without, allowing to everything its right of existence, and celebrate it all! Celebrate the inherent transformation and ecstatic evolution that follow hot on the heals of your love and you will be well on your marvellous adventure in Love and to your discovery of all that Life so zealously desires to reveal within you!