*Brian Wilcox. 'The Look of Love'
Two members of the Trinity (full icon has three); Andrei Rublev, 1400s . The angel on the left is the Father, the one in the middle (here, right) the Son.
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Language often conceals a deeper sense than we mean when we speak, for we oft remain unconscious of the subtle. An example is the language of love.
1) Persons say, "I love her" or "I love him" or "I love it." The "I" makes "her" or "him" or "it" an object. "I" is not saying, "I give love to her," which would make "her" a recipient of love, though still objectified. "I" appears to claim to possess love: "I have love to give her." This little "i" of personhood claims much ownership, while owning nothing, and certainly not love. The "i" does not have any love to give anyone or anything. Again: "I" has no love to give.
2) "I fell in love with him" is another way of love talk. Here, love is separate from the "I" and the "other." Love is something into which one falls, with another falling in the same love. The intuition of "falling in" or "being in" is surrender. This wording intuits a communion of two within a larger Whole, still being two. Communion is the field of devotional spirituality, where devotees personify the Absolute to aid the experience of loving. Even in oneness, we seek union, for One experiences Itself. And, here, one may find refuge when feeling unloved, if one trusts the Divine loves him of her.
3)Simply, Love. Love, here, is transpersonal. In oneness, we cannot absolutely be an "I" loving or an "I" falling "in love." One is Love. Still, within One, love takes place eternally. Here is the truth Ken Wilber, in Sex, Ecology, Spirituality, observes: "If the souls wants to know God, it cannot do so in time." Love, timeless, is loving in time. The greater our connection with Love outside time, the more loving our action in time. In Spirit, our language of love includes the prior aspects of love language in a relative sense, for all forms of loving moves within Love Itself. Love recreates Itself in time and space through loving by the most immature to the most mature expressions of Spirit-being-Itself. Love has many faces, yet remains Love.
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The extravagance of Love, the subject of this writing, is about being in-Love: "Love" meaning not a love, not an affection, but Love. One can see this Love as the Absolute personified in many ways, or as an attribute of the Absolute. Still, logic clarifies what flows forth from the Spring must be the Spring, for the Spring cannot give but of Itself. Otherwise, we have something eternally separate from the Spring, this being a logical impossibility. All coming from the Spring, retains the nature of the Spring.
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[O]n balance, I would prefer a thousand mistakes in extravagance of love to any paralysis in wariness of fear. Our world has known too much of fear, defensiveness, and mistrust; I think we could use a healthy dose of unmitigated, mistake-making loving.
*Gerald G. May. The Awakened Heart.
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The Sage related a story to a follower who enjoyed arguing the rightness of his point of view. Said the Sage:
A monk went to talk with the Abbot. "Father," he said, "Brother Martin seems so holy but so unhappy. Why is this?" Replied the Abbot, "For Brother Martin would rather stand in the right than to let himself fall in Love."
A Face in wine stillness
red like red world
there's a raindrop ... splash! ... I
drowning gleefully in sweet intoxication
submerged in a liquid galaxy and
awakened from a long sleep
I arose from the grave in Love again - hooray! -
"Brian, you really never left
for the ache behind every pursuit of intimacy
shaped the labyrinthine way that led you, oft unknowing,
back to my Heart;
if you'd never left Me
you would've never
Good deaths open to Life
other deaths further the separation
Surrender to the fortunate demise
and say "Goodbye!" for good
to your old life
Become the seed
that when sown
grows to be the bloom
that awakens daily in Love
to kiss the Sun
Give the Beloved the rope
He knows best how to tie your heart
to His Heart
Surrender makes everything possible in
Remember, if you want to appear normal
you'll never make this ecstatic love
with the Friend
Leave behind appearances and normality
become a child again:
no, even before that
before you forget your
Oneness with Love - Home
You can answer this question for yourself - no one can answer it for you -: Am I going to let this relationship grow and deepen according to its own mystery, or am I going to try to fit it into what I have been told it should be?
A challenge of the Wayfarer is welcoming the spaciousness of being wherein what led one to surrender no longer applies to where one is being drawn mutely by Life.
If you want the safety of a should-be relationship with Life, you will live outside the wonders of Paradise. If you yield into the embrace of Love, though you have no idea what that is, you abandon yourself to the obscure leadings of unseen Grace.
Yet, while obscure is the Sacred, where is this? Kabir (b. ca. 1440) says:
Hiding in this cage
of visible matter
is the invisible
she is singing
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A seeker said to the Sage, "I feel unloved, regardless of how I love others. I have this deep ache that won't go away, to discover this love." "What would the love you ache to feel feel like?" asked the Sage. The seeker told what the love would feel like. Spoke the Sage, "That's not love." "What am I to do, then?" inquired the seeker. Said the Sage, "Forget how love would feel to you." "And," asked the seeker, "what will happen?" "Love will show you itself. You will learn love that is nothing like what you think love is or should be. Then, you will never ache again to feel loved the way you think love ought to feel. More, you will never long to feel love again."
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The opulence of Life is present in the obvious. Love is not found. Love is here. This extravagance is not something added to our lives; our lives, our bodies, are already immersed in this Sea of Wonder. To fall in-Love is to awaken to where we already are: we are already in-Love. This is why loving and being loved is our highest joy on Earth.
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©️ Brian Wilcox, 2020
*Brian can be contacted at email@example.com; his book, An Ache for Union: Poems on Oneness with God through Love, is available through major online booksellers, including Amazon and Books-A-Million, or via the publisher, AuthorHouse.
*Poem "Hiding in this Cage," in Kabir. The Poetry of Kabir.