In Seattle, the clouds are so heavily laden with moisture that the clouds turn a particular shade of grey. They are almost the color of granite stone. People are milling about in the streets with their coffee cups; their shoulders hunched slightly against the dismal weather. Today, I feel the opposite of the weather outside. I feel expansive. The contrast between how I feel and the ambiance of the city this morning is adding coziness to the warmth inside my heart.
Every event I speak at is different, but this one was the most multi-dimensional collection of people I’ve been in a single room with in the physical plane. I was in a particularly humorous mood yesterday and so I teased the audience and played and managed to arrive at real depth and substance just the same. By beautiful synchronicity, as it was Valentine’s Day, the questions were all about relationships. We encountered the age old and deeply rooted belief that you have to love yourself first for anyone to love you, or to be able to love anyone else. And I spent a good 20 minutes unraveling that belief in plain view.
In the spiritual field, there are many contradictions that are both true, because they refer to different dimensional aspects of one universe, where different rules apply. We call these ‘complimentary contradictions’. If you know about the law of attraction, it’s easy to see that loving yourself makes you a perfect match to love from others. But lets look at a small problem with the statement “you must love yourself to love others or be loved by others”. The problem can be easily demonstrated by asking you the question “Do you believe in oneness or not?” If the answer is yes, you cannot truly believe you need to love yourself to love others or be loved by others because there is no such thing as “other” in this universe. Regardless of whether you are focusing love on yourself or someone else, it is ultimately self-love. In a universe that is one, loving the table you’re sitting at is loving the self and loving the self is loving the table you’re sitting at.
This week, I have had to be present with multiple painful experiences; I have felt a lightness of being as the intensity of my own consciousness burns through these layers of obscurity like dirty film strip. The ego is defensive. It plans to keep you away from all the things that could oppose its sense of self. If it sees itself as good, any awareness of insecurity that it might be bad is to be resisted at all costs.
Chances are, unless you are lucky enough to fall off of a park bench and experience a spontaneous awakening, you’re not going to wake up one day and instantly feel the love that this universe at large holds for you and feel like everything is on your side. But you can begin to develop a different relationship with the universe. The first step is to dive deep into the places within you that scare you. Defense can be the alarm, alerting you that this opportunity is present and ready for the taking.