“Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.”
In my opinion, Valentine’s Day is ridiculous. It’s an excuse to buy more shit if you have a partner, and to feel like shit if you don’t.
That being said, I had a really powerful experience yesterday that made me feel grateful for this day that has been set aside for Love. Maybe not romantic love/lust/obsession or whatever, but instead, for the appreciation of human connection and the ability for humans to surpass any challenge with softening, love and understanding.
I talked at length yesterday with one of my favorite people about his experience studying Africana history. He is black, and talked about his previous anger at white people, and then about the growing compassion and empathy he has acquired as he’s learned more about what happened in the past, and more about himself. To me, this transformation is beyond beautiful.
I’ve done a lot of work on myself over the years to be less of an angry asshole, but frankly, when I think about slavery, Nazi Germany, the genocide in Rwanda, the rape of our environment, or our current situation with ISIS, a visceral anger and despair bubbles up in me that is foreign to my daily experience. Sitting down with my friend however, opened me up in a way I have been unable to access by myself.
The idea that love is actually enough is something that most people blow off as ideal thinking. I understand the reaction to just say it’s bullshit, and that in fact we as a people need much more than love to survive and thrive- both in relationships and politics. But then I experience these moments where the power of love completely transforms situations, people, and outcomes.
Maybe love is enough, but we have just built up so many walls within ourselves that it is incredibly difficult to access it. Maybe the real work is to get present enough in our own body to see where our habitual patterns kick us out of love and into pride. And maybe the key is quieting our mind enough to let it open to the possibility that the bullshit we tell ourselves is nothing compared to the power of love.
My wish for you this Valentine’s Day is for a true experience of the innate connection we all share. For a softening of pride. For an opening of mind and heart. And I offer you the invitation of love into your life. Love for yourself, and love for all others.