Love given or received is like the very air you breathe. It is there for you to use as you wish; deep breaths or shallow ones, it is your choice. People breathe all day long, but is it something they are aware of on a moment to moment basis? Not generally. They just breathe. The body demands air to function. Your cells, your life blood demands it. But love? Can love be something that is demanded of the soul? Or is love a choice that you can make? Could it possibly be that what you consider to be love is, in fact, a very limited definition of the word and that whether considered to be choice, chance or condition love is, in fact, a reality.
There are lonely people all around you. There are those who would declare themselves to be unloved by anyone, man or animal. That is a choice they have made. They didn't just end up that way. It was not fate. It was a conscious, at some level or another, decision they made to be alone and unloved. Why? It is a different answer for everyone. Perhaps they were afraid of being hurt. Perhaps they'd been hurt before in the "arena" of love and did not wish to repeat the experience. From one vantage point, not doing something again just because the results weren't picture perfect the first time around is sort of dumb. And, then again, one could say once burned, twice shy. So, you can make a conscious decision to open yourself to love.
So, let's say that you are 45 years old, bald, fat and for the most part, usually pretty grouchy. The hard and fast planes of your body are drooping somewhat and you see age advancing quickly upon you. According to the dictates of Madison Avenue you're not exactly prime dating material. Are you going to allow that to stop you? Fine. Your decision.
Remember, though, that love, like the air you breathe, is available to you anytime you want. But, a few pointers. You might want to let your guard down just a little bit to be open more completely to the experience of love.
Every person would seem to have an opinion on how to go about getting, keeping, sustaining and enlivening the loving experience. We might begin by saying that love is a subjective experience. It's up to each and every individual how they will define love for themselves and how they see it represented in the world around them. In some cases love takes on the appearance of a harsh taskmistress in teachers who demand much from their students. To the students and their point of view they have only a tough teacher who demands they do homework over their holiday breaks. The teacher, on the other hand, does this out of the love she or he has for their students. So, it is and it is not. Whether the student, as the years pass, comes to value the study habits instilled by that particular teacher or not is of no consequence. It was a job. It paid the rent, but it was also a deep seated love of teaching and of seeing potential in another human being that put the teacher there in the first place.
Another kind of love is the love that a parent has for their children. This category of love varies, too, in the ways it is expressed. Depending upon how the parent experienced love with his or her own parents or caregivers is going to determine just how he or she will love their own children. To this end society plays a large part in how love is represented through the ages.
There is the love an individual holds for an interest. In this way love might be compared to interest. If it is a passionate interest nothing can sway the person from what they love to do. For instance, one person might eat, think and breathe stamps. Stamps is what they are interested in. And, stamps is what they love to do. Anything and everything having to do with stamps. Can you see the energy a person so totally involved with an activity they love to participate in exhibits?
If you can think of love as being that which glues the universe together, that which makes the world go round, you might envision love as energies that move and pulse. There is higher love that can even be seen from afar, an ethereal glow that pulses outward from the planet Earth. That's why they can say that angels can see you praying. Universal days of meditation and peace actually do generate effects that, though they might not seem to be long lasting do make a difference. In any case, it is important that a person never stop believing in love.
Love can exist between co-workers; love that takes the form of respect and affection and does not violate commonly accepted company policies about fraternizing or romantic involvement between the individuals in question. Viewing love in this manner a person might begin to look at what appears to be a wider definition of love than that which is generally thought of when you think of love.
But, the love that exists between two people who share on a more intimate level that of a sexual relationship begins to be slightly different than the love that might be experienced elsewhere. And yet, always the core energy of love is exactly the same for all aspects of love.
Forgiveness is divine. It is looked upon as one of the major and good accomplishments. Compassion, understanding and forgiveness lie as the cornerstones of truly wondrous relationships. Even though there might be other problems, for who is perfect? Those ingredients are just as necessary for a long-term and successful relationship as an interest in sex is.
And, when the sexual feelings are changed? As when aging and overwhelming interests intrude that sexual feelings seem to become dormant and the situation sometimes confusing or even alarming to those involved? Be at peace with yourselves for it is not an indication that your interest in your partner has flagged but merely that you are changing. Does the seed always remain in aspect a seed? Or does it move through its own evolution from seed to seedling, to young and supple plant, to old and gnarly oak tree? Though the outward appearance has changed the consciousness of the plant, the love it speaks will always be there for whoever comes by to give it a hug.
Tongue in cheek, we would speak today on the need to love yourself. Loving is sometimes an aspect of your day that goes largely ignored that will instead of being addressed and observed with enthusiasm, will instead find itself shoved onto a back burner in lieu of more pressing needs - the need to get ready to go to work, the need to answer the messages of those who have contacted you overnight, the need to perform any number of mundane or not so mundane tasks. All of this, though necessary in the pursuit of your work, might seem to interfere with a smooth and unobstructed path toward inner peace. What you can do and still perform competently in your work is to create a path that nothing will ever interfere with. It takes time to do this. It takes an effort and no little attention to provide a means for your conscious attention toward love and peace to move, but once set upon will enable you to always be there no matter what you do.
In this way you do not limit yourself to participating in love only at prescribed times where the lights might be dimmed and soft music plays, but in the midst of the racket of a busy day with demanding people at every point of the compass. Imagine a sense of peace that moves outward from you to touch all around you transforming a crisis into something that can be handled quickly, efficiently and with no pain to you. You thought that was love? It is. It is the effect of love upon your life.