In an earlier post http://wp.me/p1jqMQ-f6, I wrote of the three confusions that can hold us back from experiencing authentic happiness: mistaking hedonism for happiness, lust for love, and self for soul.
Part of the joy of being human is to experience pleasure, to fall in love and to enjoy personal success. These can be the high points in the roller coaster ride of our lives, and these highs can help us endure the inevitable intervening low points.
But if we are preoccupied with the pursuit of sensual pleasures, romantic love and our personal interests, and allow these goals to consume all of our energies and the precious days of our lives, we may compromise deep personal and spiritual growth and fail to discover the greater meaning in our lives.
Physical attraction and infatuation inevitably fade, and for a relationship to endure it requires a deeper more enduring love.
The word, love has many meanings. Two people may each say, “I love you,” not realizing that each defines and experiences the emotion in very different ways.
Love is more than just emotion, attraction, infatuation and chemistry.
The real thing – unconditional love – is a spiritual experience.
With this love, we lose our selves – our little self-interested egos. This love is not jealous or possessive. It is accepting and forgiving. It is compassion and caring.
It is the love of a best friend – steadfast and reliable. It is the arms ready to carry you when you need a lift, the ears to listen when you need to talk, and the smile that says, “I’m so happy to see you.”
It is the love of a parent at its best – not tied to good behaviour, being successful or being perfect. It sees the beautiful baby in the terrible two and troubled teen. It is the love of the father for his prodigal son, always there and waiting for his return.
It does not keep track of rights and wrongs.
It is unconditional and omniconditional.
It sees the beauty and potential of your soul – the real you.
It makes life more than bearable. It gives life meaning, and makes it all worthwhile.