Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The shadow of love

I have had these distinct impressions.

Perhaps one of my great mistakes is that I think I know what love is. I think I am able to love; and I think I can recognize love when I encounter it.

In point of fact, love is not a single thing. Because it is the creating force of the universe, it exists to varying degree in every manifestation of reality. There is love at the quantum level; there is love in material chemistry, there is love in minerals and in animals, just as there is love in people. This love reveals itself in a constant unfolding of God's will and God's glory. Yet because my sensation of Self is inadequate, I only taste but a faint shadow of that truth in my ordinary life. Love is the very fabric of things; yet I experience it as a fleeting quality.

 Only by freeing myself of what I think of as my own love can I become open to God's Love, which is transcendent. His Love has no specific qualities; it is objective and universal. Treating all of creation equally, it embraces everything. I'm not like that — I'm much more selective. Yet because I am created from this objective Love, I can choose, with some effort, to submit myself to it. This means I empty myself of what I am, within my essence — not my personality, which I need — and an open space is created, which can receive this universal Love.

 I need to submit myself to God's Love and be filled with God's Love, because I can't really understand any kind of Love unless I open to this force. Only by doing this will any of the love I express in ordinary life have real quality or be durable. My own love is unreliable and intermittent. It is, above all, fractured by the violence of my opinions. I don't see that, usually; if there is one thing I love, narcissistically, it's my opinions. I'm not suspicious enough of them.

I have the capacity to surrender and submit. It is not that far away from me; all I need to do is embrace the intimacy that is offered by an emptying of the soul in preparation for the receiving of God's Grace. That Grace will surely come, if I make room for it; and it will just as surely remain a shadow, for as long as I insist on being the one who loves.

If I become a vehicle for God's Love, what loves, loves through me; I become transparent. This is a high calling indeed; a rarity. Even when I am called through inner privilege to an experience of this kind, my understanding is lacking.

This has something to do with what is active and what is passive in me. What is passive in me thinks it can do things; this is paradoxical, because I think that my outer action is real action. Actually, it's a rejection of my inner force; it is passive towards my inner state, the inner Self, which is the origin of all of my Being.

What is truly active in me waits.

If I enter a state of waiting, this is active; I am attendant in an inner sense, awaiting the arrival of the Lord. I may wait a long time; but I accept this, and I wait. In this way, because I am constantly aware of the potential presence of the Lord, I don't forget my Self, even as I don't forget the Lord. In this way, I am an attendant servant, always waiting for the moment when the Lord requires me. In this way, I am active—attendant—instead of being passive, that is, distracted by all the things I think I ought to be doing. A servant of this kind is never present when the Lord needs him.

 Why do I wait; and why is this active?

I wait, because every vessel that exists — every material object, event, circumstance, and condition — they are all vessels — exists in order to receive and express God's Love and Mercy. The purpose of the universe itself is a vehicle to express Compassion, Love, and Mercy: these are the most essential qualities of God, and God created the universe as His body in order to give those supreme qualities a place of residence. In so far as objects, events, circumstances, and conditions receive and express these essential qualities of God, so do they serve the Lord, and in so far as they do not, they don't.

 The servant awaits the pleasure of his Master. I, as a servant, am blessed with a master of incomparable generosity; a master whose only attitude towards his servants is one of Love, because each of them is His own child, a veritable part of Himself.

 So in attempting to be in touch with my inner self, I am actually attempting to engage in a deeply loving action. It requires a new and different understanding of Love; not my love, but the Love of God, which passes all understanding.

 I respectfully hope you will take good care.

1 comment:

  1. There you go, Lee. Hit it on the head. I appreciate the inquiry and wonder. This makes the piece ring true. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.