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Saturday, December 17, 2011

No Matter What...

I woke this morning feeling the need to recommit to my promise of loving "no matter what." Events and circumstances have arisen this month offering the opportunity to be true to my word. As I faced the situation with my family of origin, I held the Prayer of St Francis in heart/mind that I might offer understanding and compassion to others and let go of my expectations. I thought things were going well, but then faced a moment when it looked differently. I fell into my old panic of having done something wrong. I took awhile and lots of prayer to remember that everything is not about me.

People have their own stuff going on and their own ways of dealing with change. What I had was another opportunity to let go of expectations. No matter what happens today, I went to offer support and resource. I did just that. I held compassion for all of us in a strange situation.

Today, I am missing my friends who are out roaming. Here, my commitment is to hold a strong signal that when they seek communication they will be able to find me. Surely, I am not the only person who has lost contact with a loved one for unknown reasons. I hold out that instead of letting go of those relationships that we remember the love we shared, honor the joy of companionship, and maintain the hope of return.

"Out beyond ideas of wrong doing and right doing, there is a field; I'll meet you there."

That quote from Rumi has sustained my hope through many years. Initially, I thought I would walk out to the field and meet my friend. I have since come to understand that my role is to be waiting in the field for the other to arrive. But how do I find the field that is free from ideas or right or wrong doing?

As I cease self-judgment and open to compassion for my own life and choices, I will be able to wait in that space. When we find that others are pushing up our stuff, that is an ideal opportunity to examine the places we have yet to embrace and love within ourselves. When we are angry, hurt, lost, distraught, this is the time for introspection. How are my expectations not being met? Who is not meeting them? Do I have the right to place those demands on another? How would I feel if those same demands were made of me? What if I just let it go? What exactly am I afraid of?

Loving no matter what requires that we face our fears. The fear of loss, abandonment, even hope, can trap us in situations that no longer serve us, or worse cause us to seek to trap others. When we recognize that separation is the illusion and expectations are attempts to control, we can see how they are the antithesis of love.

For love seeks not its own, but rather that the other might be free to live and be, abundant and prosperous. Love lets go. All those old quotes are still true today:
I do my thing and you do your thing.
I am not in this world to live up to your expectations,
And you are not in this world to live up to mine.
You are you, and I am I,
and if by chance we find each other, it's beautiful.
If not, it can't be helped.
That last line is a bit of a surprise, but included as it is part of the original Gestalt prayer (1969). The idea of the statement is the focus on living in response to one's own needs, without projecting onto or taking introjects from others. It also expresses the idea that it is by fulfilling their own needs that people can help others do the same and create space for genuine contact. It is with this understanding that I propose we can indeed love others, no matter what...

In Light and Love,


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