Many of us have been co-opted in claiming love for self, because it was deemed selfish or egotistical. However, without a true measure of healthy self-love, there is no way to fully and wholly love another. We would simply be seeking to fill the gaps of self with the energy of another, but this would, in the fullness of time, eventually leave us empty.
Self love is the catalyst for understanding what is necessary, what is superfluous, and what is desired for a true sense of intimacy, or Into-me-see, as I think of it.
When we have a clear into-me-see, we then can share this awareness with others who desire to also feel into-me-see. This clarity of perception might be uncomfortable if you are unused to being held as you are. We have frequently been given messages that we should to be like someone or something else. That who we are is too little, or too much, or too something other than what we are. But, the fact is, you cannot be other than that which you already are. Ownership of self is the first step towards self loving, because one cannot love what is not realized, not held as dear or recognized as truth.
Honest love is dignity and strength, passion and compassion all rolled into one ball of messy truths and uncomfortable facts that must somehow be reconciled and forgiven, honed and cherished before we can truly be seen or held or cherished by another. True self love may take years to achieve, but we practice daily within the scope of the relationships we already hold. Along the way, as we grow in our practice, our relationships will grow as well, expanding, contracting, letting go or changing shape as we also shift our shape.
Self love then becomes the measure of the worth we place upon ourselves and our time & energy. We become reluctant to fritter our precious resources in areas or endeavors that sap our strength or diminish our capacity. We begin to hold ever more clear and clean the boundaries that allow us to continue to grow while we expand in our capacity to feel.
Feelings of hatred and fear are actually layers of love.
Feelings of sadness and betrayal, another layer to move through, so that we become versed in the full spectrum of what love is, and know when it is lacking. For without these layers of uncomfortable understandings, we become trapped in the realms of fantasy and make-believe that are glittery, but are as false as fool’s gold . We are reluctant and unyielding to change, as we cling to this illusion in an attempt to feel safe. So we do not let go and let ourselves grow.
Fantasy must make way for the fiction to shift. Real life is messy and uncomfortable, painful and full of sacrifice. It is not a mistake however, It is walking through the full spectrum of awareness that allows us to see all turns of the wheel. All realms of the emotional landscape allows us to become wise in ways of the heart and in the claiming of that which we learn to see as resolute and strong. We cannot know the borders to the Map of Love if we do not cross the terrain. We hike its forest and deserts, forge the lakes and streams, explore caves and scale mountains so that by its claiming, we can know where to plant our heart’s home.
Try this Heart Breath Meditation video to help clear away imbalance.