Friday, August 22, 2014

How to Receive Love

We must be on a roll in my meditation group - this is the second week in a row that our reading and subsequent conversation have led me back to the blog.  I had one of those little aha! moments Monday night.  It's not that this was some brand new information, but you know how sometimes things can just hit you in a way that hadn't registered before.  (There's a phenomenon Barry and I have noticed about poems, for instance.  You can read one, sometimes many times, and then one day you hear or read it and realize you never even saw it before.  It's like that.)

So, we were talking about receiving love, and that so often love comes at us and we don't see it, or we ignore it, or we devalue it somehow.  Even those little connections with strangers walking down the street, when you both make eye contact and smile, can be moments taken in as love.  I think there are multiple times every day when I shrug off what would help to fill my heart.  Angeles used to say that we should give from the overflow buckets around the well, not from the well itself.  It took me a long time to stop just giving myself away, which is what I internalized in childhood that is what I am supposed to do.  But I have always looked at being open-hearted (which, of course, I always saw myself as not good enough at), as how well and how much I gave.  The aha! came when I saw this week how much I need to open to receive.  (Part of me responds, "Well, duh," but I'm not going to indulge my inner critic today, thank you very much.)  So, here's the first edit of a poem I'm working on (the title is the post's title):

Do not shrug off
the gift of the
stranger’s smile,
the friend’s embrace,
the grandchild’s hand
in yours.
There are so many ways
to receive love.
All of the offerings,
small and not-so-small,
together could fill
and nourish
your hungry heart,
if you would only
recognize them
and welcome them in.

All your life
you have wished to be
one of those regarded as
open-hearted and loving.
The truth is,
it is not that
you give insufficiently.
It is that you do not
replenish the supply
by accepting fully
and consciously
all that is offered

to you.

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