Learning to Love as LOVE loves

onenow By onenow, 8th Sep 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/143k_qc3/
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Essays

I think the most important work we can do to create more peaceful lives for ourselves and to help humanity, in general, is to become the greatest expression of Love we are capable of becoming. To that end I offer three steps to move in that direction.

Learning to Love as LOVE ITself loves

The single most important work we will ever do is to heal anything which keeps us from Loving as the Universe Loves. Life has shown me that we are absolutely Loved without any conditions, Loved beyond anything we can imagine we deserve. When we work to approach learning to Love that way, the process itself is very cathartic, very healing, even if we never actually reach that goal.

To that end, I would like to offer three tools for removing blockages to our demonstration of Love.

The first and most important tool to becoming the greatest expression of Love you are capable of becoming is forgiveness. We cannot be a full and complete expression of Love as long as there is any hurt we hold as “unforgivable.”

In Truth, there is no hurt so hideous that it is intrinsically unforgivable. There is only that which we refuse to forgive. When we discover the truth that we are not incapable of forgiving but merely unwilling to do so, we find ourselves poised for significant growth previously unimagined in our wounded state.

I used to teach at a Federal Correctional Institution as part of The Life Connections program. It was a curriculum based system which separated individuals by their professed faith traditions.

During my years of teaching there, I had the joy of listening to Azim Khamisa a man who lost his twenty year old son, a college student working part-time as pizza delivery boy, to a gang-banger’s initiation rite. Azim and the perpetrator’s grandfather had created The Forgiveness Foundation which travelled the world teaching young people and adults the importance of self-esteem and of forgiveness.

At one of Mr. Khamisa’s presentations an inmate asked a very profound question of Azim: “How do you know when you have forgiven someone?” to which Azim answered, “I know I have forgiven someone when they have safe passage through my mind.” In other words, when he could think of someone and find no resentment remained in his mind, he knew he had completely forgiven that person.

While the tools for forgiveness are many and varied, the bottom line is that we must reach a point where we are able to think of that person and allow them to pass through our minds without any resentment or pain still attached to their image. The methods for accomplishing this are individual in nature, but I have always found that some degree of forgetfulness comes in handy as well as taking personal responsibility for the event. While I may have not played any part in the original injury, I have been the one who has clung to the memory of the incident. In this, I have complete responsibility. Wayne Dyer used to say that what happened yesterday was as ancient as the Peloponnesian War. In other words, let the past own the past and let your awareness be in the present. Hanging on to anything, any memory of the past only creates pain that need not be a part of our current day consciousness. Let it go and set both yourself and the alleged injurer free.

While I know that sometimes acts which have injured us seem so heinous that we feel completely justified in refusing to forgive, nonetheless, clinging to the hurt just allows pain to continue where peace could reside instead. Let it go, whatever it is. Allow the chains which bind you under the guise of these memories to fall away. Enjoy the new lightness which accompanies such a release, to be your experience. Forgive today, tomorrow, and each day, until no trace, indeed no memory, of the hurt remains.

Not only will this free you of the heartache your anger has perpetuated, but it heals the whole world in the process. Even if you believe you are unable to do this for yourself, I would urge you to attempt it for the sake of all humanity. No greater work will you ever pursue.

The second most important work you can begin today follows the same line of reasoning. We must learn to Love ourselves, just as we are, so that we have an abundance of Love which overflows from our hearts to pass on to the world.

I believe it to be true that we cannot fully love another until we can fully love ourselves. Loving myself always begins with forgiving all the parts of me that I find hard or impossible to love.

Paul Ferrini, in his excellent book, The Twelve Steps of Forgiveness writes: “Every one of us has condemned ourselves. And every one of us has tried to work out of our self-hatred by projecting the responsibility for our problems upon others.

But it just doesn’t work. Self-hatred remains self-hatred, even when other people become involved. Attacking others or defending against their attack does not lessen our deep-seated judgment of ourselves. Deep down inside every single one of us is a wounded child who needs to heal.

The process of forgiveness offers this child the opportunity to heal. It is a life-long process that continues as long as we continue to judge ourselves and others.


Ferrini is spot-on, in my humble opinion. As we forgive ourselves we find ourselves to be worthy of our love. This fills our heart to overflowing and we, in turn, find it easy to share this love with the world.

The third step we must master if we are to become full expressions of Love, is to stop judging. We learn to judge others from our earliest days of infancy, in part for our survival and in part because most of our parents were not examples of highly evolved humans.

We watch the news and we shake our heads wondering how people could be so screwed up, but we do not understand that everything we see is contained within us. There is only ONE power and ONE presence in the Universe and we dwell within that Oneness as IT. When we see actions, we judge as evil, we demonstrate a lack of understanding of the Truth. This Truth is that we see evil because we have evil within us. If it did not reside within us, we could not see it. When we judge some things as good and others as bad we are creating more and more separation, more increments of right and wrong, truth and untruth, when in fact all such judgment is illusion.

Everything simply IS. Any other definition is judgment and judgment always leads to suffering.

When we learn to stop resisting what we see, start to tune into the beauty which surrounds us, and learn to fully love “what is” we set ourselves and our world free of the pain that judgment creates. Everything we believe is “wrong” or “evil” only demonstrates areas where we need healing, areas where we are withholding Love. Such judgment never speaks to what is; it always only points to what resides within our own consciousness.

Judging is a habitual behavior. Consequently, it is not easy to stop. The best we can do is to begin to notice where we judge and instead immediately cancel that line of thinking and replace it with love. Loving what is instead of judging it as erroneous or bad can become the new habit. In replacing the separation causing judgment with the loving inclusive choice we begin opening the heart to the possibility of becoming more loving individuals.

All three steps which I suggest as necessary to learning to Love as Love Itself loves are so intertwined it is virtually impossible to pull them apart for separate analysis.

To become the greatest expression of Love I am capable of becoming I must learn to love and forgive myself completely. In so doing I have the possibility of loving and forgiving everyone else. When I am successful in accomplishing these, lifelong pursuits, perhaps I can learn to stop judging others so that I find I have nothing new to forgive.

Once I become a clean and open vessel of the LOVE, which is the Universe Expressing as Me, I can transcend the pain and drama that the unexamined life has always wrought. These three steps help create a life which is unimagined by most of humanity, yet remains possible to each and every one of us.

Having glimpsed moments of pure, unadulterated Loving Openness I promise you that the work spent becoming such a vessel of Love pays greater rewards than can be dreamed. It must be experienced to be believed.

Tags

Consciousness, Forgiveness, Judgment, Love, Loving Oneself, Paul Ferrini, Wayne Dyer

Meet the author

author avatar onenow
I frequently refer to myself as a student of Love because everything I do is for the purpose of exploring and working to become the greatest expression of Love I am capable of becoming.

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Comments

author avatar Nancy Czerwinski
9th Sep 2015 (#)

Thanks for sharing this article.

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author avatar onenow
9th Sep 2015 (#)

Thank you Nancy.

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author avatar Lady Aiyanna
11th Sep 2015 (#)

Prisoners behave well when they are inmates as that grants them release from prison. Now if they behave the same way out of prison, well they are benevolent and magnificent and reformed else they are back in again to be schooled, taught and reformed once more because your love wasn't just enough and your teaching was inadequate hence they became repeat offenders.

BTW, I worked within Programmes Management and Prisoner Rehab for Serco in an NZ prison.

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author avatar Lady Aiyanna
11th Sep 2015 (#)

How have you behaved as a trainer to these prisoners, morals and values and proper adherence to life or just another trainer following a timetable curriculum. I used to design the timetables for the prison curriculum too.

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author avatar Lady Aiyanna
11th Sep 2015 (#)

Seen trainers who never behaved themselves too....

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author avatar onenow
13th Sep 2015 (#)

Thanks for your comments Lady Aiyanna. The Life Connections program has an over 85% long term success rate (5+years), The normal in the federal system is 70% recidivism within the first two years. The ones who have returned to prison are primarily people who never took their addiction seriously and began using again once they got out.

Part of the success of this program is in the selection process and part is in the emphasis in teaching Thinking Errors by Stanton Samenow. Add in the fact that there are multiple seminars in addition to the actual faith-based curriculum and the inmates receive a well rounded education in self-control. Yes, we could not save all of them but no program ever will as there are always individual responsibilities which cannot be enforced or controlled.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
4th Oct 2015 (#)

I recall the words 'He who is without sin can cast the first stone'. Yes, we have to overcome our fault-lines before judging others.

I can readily forgive but tough to forget some acts of others that remain unconscionable, in-explainable. Whenever they cross my mind I say to myself - I will deal with them later. They might have had own reasons.

I have seen how just a smile brings such a positive response as that is becoming a rare commodity nowadays! Going out of the way to help others touches anyone and then being genuinely concerned about them. I try to rise higher inch by inch but have to hurry as time is running out!

Thanks for this positive post, Onenow - siva

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author avatar onenow
16th Oct 2015 (#)

Thank you Siva for your wise words.

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author avatar Kingwell
14th Oct 2015 (#)

I agree we must forgive if we are to find peace. When we forgive it helps others as well. Blessings
..

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author avatar onenow
16th Oct 2015 (#)

Yes, forgiveness not only helps us, but raises the collective consciousness of the entire human race as well. Hatred, anger, and resentment have the opposite effect.

Thank you so much for being here.

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