by Sarah Davis, Goonellabah NSW
A lovely and wise young woman recently said to me that “the love I was holding back was not actually mine to hold back – that love is for all, equally”. This was in the context of a group discussion of how we ‘hold back’ expressing love, our true essence, in life.
When the young woman said these words it was like I had a ‘high speed download’ – or what some may call a ‘moment of revelation’ – where my understanding in one moment expanded. I immediately felt how the nature of love is unity, equality – that it cannot be separated – it cannot be for one person and not the other, it is always for All – without exception.
From this I then connected to the deep understanding and feeling that love is our essence, it is what we are made of and therefore it is everyone’s right to feel it and receive it. I felt how if I choose to hold back my love and natural expression (often through beliefs and ideals, i.e., ‘I am not enough’; ‘it is not safe to trust’; ‘fear of rejection’; etc) I am not only denying myself – I am denying others love, which through reflection can inspire them to re-connect to that same love which is within them.
Who am I to hold back something that is meant for everybody?
To be honest I have lived like I have that right – to hold back love like it is mine to decide what to do with, and what not to. I have placed many conditions on sharing love. The other person needs to do something for me first, then I will open to them or share with them. I have wielded this in many cases where I would be open and ‘loving’ to one person, but not to another. How would I pick and choose this? Generally I would be ‘loving’ to those who please me, or whom I want to please; ‘unloving’ to those who displease, annoy or threaten me. A note here that my being ‘unloving’ did not often look horrible or mean – it was usually in the form of ‘politeness’– for this is considered socially appropriate behaviour and is a way to ‘play it safe’. Though how ‘safe’ is it truly to hold back something which is both our essence and our right to feel and express? In the attempt to hold back or ‘protect myself’ from, I was not aware that I was hurting myself through being separate to the love that I am. I had the commonly held belief that I could love myself and not another – ‘be selective’ in other words. For me, politeness in the place of love became a way of being and interacting that led to superficial relationships whereby I always felt alone – however, in reflection I was creating this separation in the first place by not first connecting to the love that I am and expressing that to another. A world without love does not make for a common or inspiring vision, however we must be honest about the fact that politeness does not replace love. On a superficial level politeness can help a system function – turn taking, sharing, listening to others, etc. However, on a deeper human level, politeness alone falls short of bringing true connection and true relationship – life then becomes a game of ‘pretending’ and ‘not offending’, rather than true expression.
True, we have free will which allows us to choose our expression; though what part of us thinks it is ‘ok’, ‘fine’, ‘justified’, ‘normal’ or perhaps even ‘good’ to hold back love?
What part of us (belief, ideal, energy) allows ‘politeness’, ‘tolerance’, the ‘holding of grudges’, right through to the ‘us and them’ beliefs which justify atrocities – to be considered acceptable forms of relating? And furthermore, what part of us falls for the belief that we can live our lives holding back love, and then press some ‘on’ button for our friends and family? When the truth is felt, that love is for all equally, none of our loveless actions can be justified.
I imagine if I were in a desert with humanity and we were all thirsty – I carry an endless cup of water. I know that everyone can find their own cup of water, however many are not aware of this. When I offer my ‘cup of water’ to someone else, it can firstly be a reminder that they are thirsty and even need a drink, as well as a reminder and inspiration to seek out and claim their own ‘endless cup’, which is no further than right there within them.
However, I share it only with some, leaving others thirsty.
When I feel and connect to the truth of love, it is absolutely without a doubt for all equally – the ‘idea’ of holding it back seems totally out of place, however all too common, as under certain conditions we ‘pick and choose’, rather than sharing freely what is in endless supply and naturally for us all.