Posts Tagged ‘love’

Fear Clings But Love Releases

October 5, 2008

There is a feeling I get whenever I decide to give away something of value. Part of me feels love, a light and airy state I enjoy. But there is another feeling there too, one a bit darker and heavier than the first. This part of me feels fear – of loss, of becoming smaller and closer to nothingness.

Fear clings but love releases. We are like leaves floating in a fast moving stream. The water of Life slips around us and we are carried along in the flow. In their fear, some leaves cling to the rocks and create eddies as the water’s flow is impeded. The water has always moved downstream. Life flows. Fear misdirects and stagnates. Love releases.

Fear looks inward and sees only the self. Love looks outward and sees the great circle that connects all of us. We all fall from the same tree and so there is no reason to fear. As life flows past me it finds you just downstream. It passes you and finds another, and another. Eventually, it finds me again. We are all connected.

That is why I try to give where and how I can. Sometimes love wins but sometimes I find myself clinging to something too valuable, too dear to give away. If I were wiser I would see that this is precisely the thing – the one thing too dear to give away – that has the greatest chance of impeding the flow of my life. Such a thing has the power to misdirect and stagnate the water around me. Such a thing has the power to cut me off from the natural flow, ensnaring me. A snag this big must be released for my own good and for the good of the stream.

It is a mistake to think of anything as if it came in a limited quantity. Scarcity is an illusion. There is enough of everything to go around, but there are those whose fear is stronger than their love. They find ways to gather resources to themselves, effectively blocking the flow downstream.

If you desire peace, then release your desires. Do not fear. Do not gather more than you can use. Help where and how you can. And remember:

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you might find
You get what you need

Rolling Stones

The Opposite of Love

January 2, 2008

What is the opposite of love? At first glance, the obvious answer is hate. I looked up the antonyms of love and hate in a few online references, and in all cases love and hate were listed as opposites. That got me to thinking.

I know that I have both loved and hated someone at the same time. When my ex-wife suddenly left me years ago, there was a brief moment when I hated her. This happened shortly after our separation and at a time when I still loved her, so the two emotions can exist together in a kind of dark harmony.

I began to wonder: If love and hate can mingle together in one heart simultaneously, are they truly opposites?

For example, most people would say that light and dark are opposites. In the classic yin-yang symbol, light and dark seem to exist separately, each defining the other. However, at the core of the light there is a spot of darkness, and at the core of the darkness there is a spot of light. The lines are clearly defined, however, and there is no blending of the two. On the other hand, I am looking at a shadow on the wall of my office. It is not pure light or dark, but appears to be a mixture of both, a subtle blending not seen in the yin-yang symbol.

Perhaps light and dark are opposites only in the sense that they tend to define one another on a continuous gradient between the two extremes. If this is so, any area on the wall that appears brighter than another would seem to be light; the contrast between two adjoining areas produces the sensation of relative lightness and darkness.

For example, say we assigned a scale of one to ten to the light-dark continuum, with one being pure darkness and ten being pure light. An area of level three would seem to be very dark unless it was compared with an area of level one, in which case it would appear as light. A logically bright level eight area would appear dark when compared to a level ten.

This is very interesting, but it occurs to me that there would be no way to make a level one area appear as anything other than dark (since there is nothing darker than pure darkness), or a level ten anything other than light (since there is nothing lighter than pure lightness). So at the pure extremes of light and dark the gradient model does appear to break down and offer us the possibility that light and dark are really true opposites.

Likewise, take the opposites ‘something’ and ‘nothing’. There is no gray here. Either something is something or it is nothing. It cannot be a mixture of both. One can never equal zero.

I have always believed the opposite of love is fear, not hate. In my own thoughts I theorize that it only appears that hate is the opposite of love. Since hate is often the result of fear, I think that hate is the symptom and fear the cause, making fear the deeper, hidden and true opposite of love.

Perhaps fear is the true opposite of love just like pure dark is the true opposite of pure light (and something is the true opposite of nothing). If this is so, hate may be just a point on the love-fear gradient, a transitory dot on the line between the two extremes.