Happy Valentine’s day!
Some people say this holiday was created to sell greeting cards, flowers and candy. Certainly a lot of money is spent on these things, and I know I always appreciated the gesture when I was given something, anything really, for Valentines.
There are other stories about how Valentine’s Day came to be celebrated and anyone can read about those with a simple Google search.
What I want to talk about today, most appropriately, is Love. After all, that is what we are celebrating isn’t it? In fact, if you think about it, most of our holidays revolve around some form of love. Love for someone or something, but Valentine’s is about Love for the sake of Love.
I have spent the last 12 years or so investigating all things spiritual. Trying to find out what matters most in this world. There are so many ideas and efforts that are noble and noteworthy. Giving is one thing that comes to mind easily. Giving of oneself, money, time and talent is a noble thing indeed.
However, I believe that one must examine the reason that one is giving. True fulfillment found in the act of giving can only be realized if one is doing it for the sake of others and not for the approval of society or for the possible tax breaks. Yet, being human, can we actually find ourselves able to give altruistically? Don’t we always give because it makes us feel good?
It is true, when you give to others it will make you feel good in some way. I assure you however, you will never feel as good as the person who receives. Even those who give to causes for animals will find that the people who are entrusted to care for the animals will feel blessed when money and time are given to their cause.
Give because you can, give because you love. When you are feeling sad, depressed, lonely, empty, and unloved giving to others in any way that you can will give you peace of mind and a sense of belonging. Give because you love people and animals, give because you love yourself!
John Lennon had it right when he wrote the worlds to the iconic song “All You Need Is Love”. That song is almost 50 years old now, (48 in 2015) and it proves the test of time because the words have just as much, or more, meaning as they did in the time that he wrote them.
John was fascinated by the way phrases had an effect on people and society. He saw the effect of propaganda and, being the visionary that he was, he understood that the proper use of propaganda was the betterment of the world we live in.
He understood that words could be used to raise the collective consciousness.
Since 1967 when John wrote this song, the Vietnam war ended but so many other wars have started and this world is filled to the brim with violence, social/economic inequality and social/economic injustice.
Hate and intolerance are rampant, one can easily give up hope that humanity has the power to effect change for the better.
But there is reason for hope!
Yesterday I watched a short video that was on my Facebook feed, about a small dog in Australia that fell off a pier and try as he might the little thing could not swim faster than the current. His owner was certain that the little dog would drown. A young Asian man was on the pier to scatter the ashes of his father and he saw what was happening to the little dog. Seemingly without thought, this young man stripped down to his shirt and underwear, dove into the ocean and rescued the animal. Heaving himself onto the pier he thrust the sopping mop of fur into the arms of the owner.
Why did this young man do something so dangerous for someone he did not know, someone he had never even met? I believe that he did this because he was moved by the desperation of the dog and the woman who thought she was losing her furry friend to the sea. I believe he did this because he understood the situation and he simply did what needed to be done.
THIS is love in action, love as a verb and not just an idea.
If every single person would reach out and help another person in need, any kind of need, we could change the world in short time. Often it will require repeated action because sometimes it takes repetition for change to take hold. But we each have the power to keep on keeping on, to give and give again.
To love and love again. And again, and yes one more time.
I have spent most of my life taking care of others. As a mother, daughter, wife, sister and friend. For a long period of this time, I really wanted something back for all this giving, and as long as I was expecting something in return, I was always disappointed. After I turned 40 and began my journey of spiritual searching, I realized finally that happiness comes from within.
I began slowly to change my point of view on many things and found fulfillment in the simpler things of life. I have gained gratitude for what life gives to me and for the love that comes to me in whatever form.
Recently I lost a very dear friend, my first childhood best friend, to an accidental drug overdose. She is the first of my friends to leave this world and I was devastated. However, this event gave me cause to contact another dear childhood friend and she was able to give me comfort and love. She was a balm to my broken heart and I soaked it up like a sponge.
Again, recently, I have found myself in a kind of spiritual crises, finding myself no longer believing in things as I always have and trying to figure out what is truth for me. At first I found myself in a great panic and I felt very alone. In my sense of aloneness, I reached out to a few friends whom I felt would understand. To my surprise I found that I was not at all alone in my changing beliefs but that each friend I spoke to had already been through this same transformation!
Each of them received my cry with love and even though we were on the phone or at the coffee shop I felt them hugging me with their words, concern and acceptance. Being alone was an illusion, one that I was very grateful to be able to let go of!
So, please accept my challenge to change the world! Let us have a quiet but raging revolution of love! Love the world, the earth, the animals, the oceans, rivers and lakes. Love all growing things, love art and industry. Love learning and teaching. Love children! Oh yes especially the children!
And, as we are all children of this universe, let’s be really revolutionary and love each other!
Love your friends and family and without reservation let us love our neighbors and strangers!
Yes, John Lennon had it right, ALL WE NEED IS LOVE.
Happy Valentine’s day everyone!