COMMITTING TO LOVE
Not as easy peasy
People who see themselves as being on a spiritual path, often have as one of their top values, to come from love in all things. The desire to feel blissful, juicy, aliveness in every single moment, as the baseline for existing. We strive to be connected, in flow, with our hearts open and unshakably rested as a presence of loving goodness. Even though most of us feel a strong desire for this, and to share this love with the world, many of us are not really committed to it. It sounds good in theory. We might even start imagining the creation of our next program or offering to help the world somehow be more loving. We get excited about the possibilities of how beautiful and peaceful life would be if everyone came from love. If the whole wide world was one big heart centered yum fest where everyone was supporting, looking out and caring about everyone else. Like a magical island where ecstatic rapture and divine bliss are the norm. Oh yes we all want to live there, or I should say we all want to live there in theory.
The reality is that most of us don’t really want it. Why do I say that you ask? I say it because we are not choosing it. For 99% of the people on this planet this is not a lived reality. It’s just a concept. A fantastical idea that feels good to think about. Perhaps we choose that all embracing, allowing and present love for moments, like when we are at a retreat, program, festival or on some exotic vacation. But when we come back to “reality” or whatever we mean by our more ordinary lives, we find ourselves stuck inside of our typical triggered responses to the movements of life. Something upsets us and we get pissed. Things don’t turn out how we had hoped and we see failure and doom. Everything feels like hard work or an uphill battle. We judge ourselves and others when things don’t live up to our expectations. We can’t stop thinking about stuff, tense up, plot for retaliation or desperately try to find way out of it all.
I am not suggesting that it’s easy peasy to choose love. The truth is, when life is not feeling like we are merrily floating down the stream of it, it is hard to choose love. Love seems like the furthest option from our reach. We are hooked into our story about what life is supposed to be rather than choosing to love it for what it is. When things feel unjust, unfair, not right or unwelcome, or when we feel unappreciated, not seen or undervalued, choosing love is hard. In choosing love our egos take a hit. It seems we have to swallow something that tastes really, really bad. How do we let go of that thing we keep saying we want to let go of, but which we keep holding onto for dear life? We let go by letting go. We feel the little micro ego death that comes with it. The death of not getting what we want or what we feel like we deserve. Then we experience the openness that remains when we relinquish. That openness, which is the fertile field of bliss and rapture.
The doorway in
If more people were choosing love, then more of us would be experiencing ecstatic rapture as the norm rather than an unpleasant, drab, harsh world. Magical rapture would be our ordinary reality. It is however quite remarkable how much we don’t allow ourselves to feel good. It’s like we all have this internal goodness meter, and we can only let it go so high before we start to find ways to make ourselves feel not quite as good. A little bit of joy and happiness is acceptable throughout our day, but not too much. A tad of pleasure and ecstasy is ok from time to time, but not too often and as long as no one else sees you experiencing it. This is the inner reality most of us live. Can you even remember when the last time was that you allowed yourself to feel uncontrollably ecstatic in front of others, outside of an alcohol or drug induced state? Before you started to be self-conscious and began to value fitting in and caring about what others think of you.
What if we didn’t need to find ways to feel less good? What if we didn’t get hooked anymore into our stories about what is or isn’t, in order to bring our state of being down? What if we were more committed to being love than to receiving what we want or getting justice? When we commit to love we bring ourselves into the reality of rapture, of direct commune with the divine, not as a concept or idea, but as our very being. There is nothing outside of us required for this to become our experience. It is an inner commitment, an inner choice, by you and for which only you can make. Containers can be set to deepen the inner permission, but you are the permission giver.
The permission to feel good, while simultaneously letting things go that we don’t really want to hang onto anyways, is the doorway to rapture. Rapture simply because you want to choose it rather than what your mind tells you that you should choose. Some people might think that this naive or stupid, and your mind will likely fight you some on this, insisting that you are letting things go that you shouldn’t. Your habituated thoughts will attempt to find ways to get you to hold on, to fight, to seek righteousness, because your thoughts think they know how to get you what you want, but they always come up short. What you want lies beyond them, in the world of the heart.
While committing to love and living from the heart may feel like defeat to the mind, the result is that you get to experience that state of rapturous delight the moment you choose love. You don’t have to wait until your thoughts agree, or until your physical reality says so. You get to experience it the moment you decide to let go of your current commitment to discontent, frustration and misery. While those states are familiar and addicting because we have normalized them as our reality, we can begin to normalize rapture now. Rapture is our nature. It’s what we are made of. Unification with our essence is rapturous union with the divine. Committing to love in face of everything is the doorway in.
Dr. Amanda Love, Network Spinal Chiropractor & Spiritual Guide, Boulder, Colorado