May 22

Today's quotation:

We come to love not by finding a perfect person,
but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly.

Sam Keen

Today's Meditation:

Nobody's perfect.  That's a simple fact.  Why, then, do we spend so much time and effort searching for that "perfect" person?  Even if we were to find such a person, wouldn't our love then be conditional upon the fact that the person stay perfect in all ways?  And we all know that conditional love isn't really love at all, but a projection of our desires.

Sam uses a very important word in this passage:  learn.  We need to learn to see other people for exactly what they are--human beings on this planet going through most of the same trials and tribulations that we encounter, and dealing with them in the ways that they see most appropriate.  When we learn to see people this way, we can feel much more compassion and love for them, for they no longer need to live up to our expectations in order for us to love them.

Love is a tricky business if we see it as something that when we give it, we should get something back.  Or if we feel that people need to deserve our love somehow.  When we're able to get past these immature ideas, though, we come to learn that love is something that we give unconditionally, and when we learn that, then and only then can we truly love other human beings.  It becomes easier to do so, too, and the more love we give, the more we find that we have in our reserves for the other people that we meet.

Questions to consider:

What does it mean to you "to see an imperfect person perfectly?"

Why do we tend to withhold our love so often if another person isn't somehow "deserving" of it?

What is unconditional love?

For further thought:

This is the miracle that happens every time to those who really love; the more they give, the more they possess of that precious nourishing love from which flowers and children have their strength and which could help all human beings if they would take it without doubting.

Rainer Maria Rilke

  

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