The early part of yesterday was a typical last-day-of-work-day-before-Christmas break....lots of scurrying around trying to finish up nagging little things that I don't want to carry over into The New Year. Isn't is ominous and such a task to consider all that we know we must leave behind, that which we know in our hearts belongs to the past? I don't know about you, but I always feel a bit overwhelmed by the task, even just with temporal things, never mind the big metaphysical things like past hurts and dealing with losses. And then there's the Grand List of what I want to implement and accomplish and experience in the year just on the horizon. Another big deal.
However, yesterday afternoon and evening were so different from my norm. I went with a lovely friend to a retirement home to give a little first time talk on the importance of teeth (me) and good nutrition (her). My friend did a beautiful job talking not just about what to eat, but about how it should be eaten. And an important part of this 'how' is eating in community. She mentioned, in closing, a few pieces of general advice....one of which was 'to love hard'. One of the little ladies who heretofore appeared not too interested in much and maybe a little cranky, suddenly piped up with a question for my friend: "How do you love hard?". Wow. My friend asked: "Do you have people you love? Yes, she said. Do they know you love them? Do you tell them? Do you spend time with them? Do you communicate often with them?". Yes, she said, to all of these. My friend then concluded that she thought the little lady was doing it.....loving hard.
I've been thinking about this all day today. I asked myself: how hard am I loving? Do the people in my life know it, and not only because I say it by rote, but because I show it and vibrate it? Do I love even when its difficult for me because I feel misunderstood, or unfairly criticized or I don't understand someone's actions or words. I've come to the conclusion that loving hard is sometimes itself very hard! But also that its the only thing that makes this human existence truly worthwhile. And I resolve to do better and better at it. We absolutely cannot, in my opinion, purport to love God if we do not learn to truly love each other, especially when it is the most difficult thing in the world to do.
We are about to celebrate the birth of the Maestro of Love. He who was born in part, to give the world a magnificent example of how to love in the midst of the most heinous of circumstances. He was left alone, betrayed by those he called 'friend and brother', unfairly accused and debased. Yet his last words were "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do". I'd say He knew how to love hard!
After leaving the retirement home, we went to have a chat over tea in an adorable little coffee shop. (Why are places that sell coffee AND tea mostly only ever called "coffee shops"?) It was wonderful to reconnect and trade stories of recent adventures had. The entire time, I was so delighted to really See this soul sitting across from me- it was a blessing. I hope I never stop really seeing her, or anyone I love- it'll make me miss all that magic that never stops tumbling over in every one of God's creations.
Speaking of magic, an adorable little boy came in with his mama, just as we were getting ready to leave. Our eyes met and I smiled and he smiled back. What is it about a little kid smiling at you that makes you feel like a million dollars? And that's not all! When we walked past where he was sitting, on the way out the door, I leaned over and said goodbye to him. He waved this teeny tiny hand at me- now I felt like TWO million dollars. And that's not all! He then, unprompted and of his own volition, put the teeny tiny hand to his mouth and blew me a kiss. Officially the very youngest guy to ever hit on me. Go ahead, be jealous.
We walked outside and were treated to a beauteous winter sky- sort of a light midnight blue with a perfect silver crescent moon in a cloudless expanse. More magic.
This story ends with me driving home and the license plate of the car right in front of me read "1Journey". I promise I didn't make this up.
I wish you all the most joyous of Christmas celebrations. May we all claim the peace and the love and the bliss that are our birthright. May we See the Magic that is sprinkled everywhere if only we take the time to Look. May we hold hands and 1Journey together. May we always, always, always choose to Love Hard.
- Siri Amrita Kaur
I am a field of awareness. Any thing beyond that is identification with form...