Saturday, August 3, 2013

Part 7- Loving Oneself Unconditionally

Some more thoughts on the last exercise:
So the really neat thing is when we realize the love for our Judge, and consequently all the parts of ourself, the next time we see the judge pop out of a friend (judging either us or someone else), instead of being repulsed, or angry, or disappointed, or start to judge our friend, we SEE our friend with the same love and eyes by which we saw the judge within us, and we recognize that we have the choice to have compassion for our friend, and to have love for our friend.  The “love” we have for our friend, is the SAME LOVE we had for ourselves when we were able to love our judge.  In this way it becomes NATURAL…it is a part of us, based on our experience.  This is what it means to have an active mystical experience. We have an experience that is real within us, and when we see certain circumstances in the world, we can release our compassion according to our experience. In this way we do not “preach” at others, nor judge them, we only tell them or show them of our experience, if graced to do so.
When we can love or have compassion as the result of the experience that we had, our actions of lovingkindness become ….natural.
This is opposed to doing good works because we think we SHOULD do them in order to be a good person, or doing good works to get God's favor, or doing good works to get to Heaven. All of these motivations for doing good are found outside of our consciousness. We are doing good in order to get something for ourselves. This type of action is bound to cause us unhappiness and suffering, while the actions that flow out of our nature from loving ourselves, are the reward in themselves. We are just doing what we were created to do. This results in fully experiencing all of our lives, and being very aware of our lives, and this results in a great and abiding joy.

Meister Eckhart (1260-1327), a German theologian and mystic said, “The eyes with which I see God are the same eyes by which God sees me. They are the same.” This is a sweeping quote which declares that the mystical experience of God happens inside of ourselves. As we learn to love ourselves this leads to the natural discovery that this is a pathway to the realization of the divine within. Restating this quote for loving oneself, it becomes, “The love by which I love myself, is the same love by which I love others.” I love myself and do not judge myself, and therefore I do not judge others. I love myself and do not call myself names when I make a mistake, and therefore I do the same for others. I love myself and treat myself with respect, and I do the same for others. In this way, the authenticity of our love brightens and blesses the whole world.

Next: A personal example of loving myself from my own life.

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