March 24


Today's Quotation:

Anything will give up its secrets if you love it enough.  Not only have I found that when I talk to the little flower or to the little peanut they will give up their secrets, but I have found that when I silently commune with people they give up their secrets also--if you love them enough.

George Washington Carver

Today's Meditation:

I've often wondered just what George meant by "give up its secrets."  In a way, those words sound intrusive and pushy, almost disrespectful of a person's right to have secrets that they don't feel like sharing.  But I feel that he's talking more about getting a person just to open up, to feel comfortable enough with me to be able to share what he or she is feeling.  And in a world in which so many people feel isolated and lonely, that kind of sharing can be very valuable to someone.

I've had friendships that almost weren't friendships.  I would do things and spend time with these people, but we never discussed anything deeply.  We never shared what was deeper inside of us, and we never allowed ourselves or each other to take a chance with each other.  These were very common when I was young.

But now I treat my friendships differently.  Now I try just to be there for the other person, to listen and to be open to whatever he or she says.  I try to be understanding and respectful, and I try to relate on a deeper level.  The result of this is first that I have far fewer friends, but second that the friends that I do have are able to "share their secrets" with me in ways that they wouldn't have been able to before.

Sometimes, just being able to talk and share what we feel is the best medicine that we can find.  It's often better than a therapist, and it often helps us to find clarity where there was none before.  Do I love people enough?  Probably not, because no one ever taught me how, and I'm still learning.  And I still have a lot to learn.  But I do know that George was right--if we love people enough, they will give up their secrets.  And that's not always for our benefit, but for theirs.

Questions to ponder:

1.  What does it mean to "love someone enough"?

2.  What kind of secrets do you keep from others?  Why?

3.  How can we "silently commune" with others?  What effects might it have if we do?

For further thought:

Love all God's creation, the whole and every grain of sand in it.  Love every leaf, every ray of God's light.  Love the animals, love the plants, love everything.  If you love everything, you will perceive the divine mystery in things.  Once you perceive it, you will begin to comprehend it better every day.  And you will come at last to love the whole world with an all-embracing love.

Feodor Dostoevsky

more thoughts and ideas on love



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