Remember seeing a photo of the earth taken from outer space?
A beautiful blue sphere painted with swirls of white. Pretty incredible, huh? Now imagine the blanket of atmosphere that completely covers our earth like a glove. We're cradled in this fabric that protects us and keeps us safe.
Just like we have an atmosphere of air that keeps us alive – we also have a different kind of atmosphere that keeps us alive on a different kind of level.
The Fabric of Love.
It's hard to imagine most of the time. We've got a lot of problems here on earth. A lot of pain and confusion and hurt. A lot of fear. A lot of anger and frustration. But through it all, we have a blanket of love that keeps things going.
When you look at a blanket or any cloth or fabric – from a distance it looks like one solid mass of material. But when you get real close, you can tell it's made up of many interwoven threads.
This blanket of love surrounding our earth is composed of an infinite number of threads connecting everything together. That's why we're all connected. That's why, on a more real level, we're all one. Because everything is connected together by threads of love.
When I get really close – and look very carefully – I see those threads more as channels. Sort of like blood vessels. But instead of blood, these vessels carry love. All connected together. Everything and everyone connects together through this interwoven tapestry of love.
Nothing is separate.
I've sent most of my life trying to prove otherwise. I blocked myself off in so many different ways. I clogged up those treaties of love with so much gunk. So many lies. So many judgments. So much pity.
"I'm not like everyone else."
"My problems really are worse."
"Nobody loves me."
A seemingly endless number of made-up stories that all had the same purpose – to separate me from everything else in one way or another. It's sad to think about how strongly I argued for my own limitations. It's still sad to see it in others.
I used to believe I had to manufacture love as if it came out of a factory!
Crank it out with great effort. Like one of those old-fashioned ice cream makers. You've turned the handle for what seemed like hours – cranking away … and finally the milk and sugar and eggs would turn to an always-too-small-amount of ice cream.
All that work for such a small reward. And then I've got to share it with all my young brothers and sisters! Where's the justice ?!
That's how I saw love. A hard thankless job that provided little return.
How do you view love? How does your 'love story' go? You do have one. Everybody has a 'tale of love':
"Love is …"
"Love means …"
"Because of love, I …"
"Love has done … to me"
Our love stories often end up being the very blockage that prevails us from feeling more love. Our stories compare to the plaque that builds up on the walls of our treaties. They restrict the flow of love. Less gets through. We feel less. We see less love in the world.
I used to believe love equals hurt. And who wants more hurt? Better to avoid love. I used to think love took great effort. I did not know love is ALWAYS flowing.
I did not know that it took great effort to keep my ridiculous stories in place. It's hard work to fight off the love. It's exhausting. But I thought I was fighting off hurt and pain.
We're surrounded by love. There's no escape. It's like the Siege of Vicksburg.
During the Civil War, the Union Army – led by General Grant – had chased the Confederate forces – led by General Pendleton – into their final retreat at Vicksburg.
The Yankees had the city surrounded. But this old river town was high on a hill and well protected. The Union forces could not break into the fort. So they starved the people out. After all the mules and rats and shoe leather were ateen, Pendleton finally surrendered. It got too painful.
That's the position most people find themselves in today: better to eat your shoes than to give in to an unknown force of love.
You and I are connected.
We think we're separate. And we do have our differences. We ARE unique. But we have much more in common than we think.
We're all connected by threads of love. The love I feel is the same love you feel. Only the stories are different. Just like we breathe the same air.
Some air smells a little sweeter than other air. But that's because of tiny particles and not the air itself.
Sometimes you find pollution in the air. The other clean, fresh atmosphere becomes tainted. Just like when we make up stories about love.
Blocking the love with our stories creates the illusion of separateness – which leads to pain and suffering.
Healing starts with recognizing the fabric of love that blankets the earth and includes everything and everyone. Nothing lies outside this blanket of love. Every human is connected to every other human.
The more we deny this, the more we make up stories (and ever come to believe those stories) the less connected – and then the less love – we feel.
It does not take effort to love … to feel love, to give love, to receive love. Rather, it takes effort to * not * feel love.
Love is part of the "Beautiful Unknown".
The love we know is often part of a story. The love we do not know – but muster the courage to experience anyway – can set us free.
Ironically, Pendleton surrendered to Grant on July 4th – Independence Day.
And the defeated soldiers were not sent to a POW camp, but set free.