Watching a red-tailed hawk rise in silent graceful arcs above Meditation Mount on a warm spring morning had me pondering on what really gives lift to our lives and can raise our consciousness to new heights. What is that missing element that carries life ever upwards and liberates us from the gravitational pull of earthly fears and fixations? While contemplating this question in the timeless space overlooking the Ojai Valley, the answer came swooping in from the blue above: Unconditional Love.
Since childhood I have been fascinated with our feathered friends in the bird kingdom and have often dreamt of emulating their skill at ascending. I am slowly discovering it is the warmth radiated from an open and caring heart that generates the needed currents and thermals of love that give lift to the outstretched wings of our humanity. Love breaks the cold circle of self-interest and turns this closed wheel into an upward moving spiral that allows the Joy of Life to circulate freely through the veins and arteries of our human experience.
The injunction to “love one another”, is one of the most profound scientific teachings ever given to humanity as all evolution proceeds upon the power of Love. This is not the sentimental love of teenage fantasy but the deep love of an open and compassionate heart that embraces the needs of others and seeks to build right relations with all aspects of life – both visible and invisible. It is the Principle of Goodwill in action.
With the countless horrors called forth by hatred that presently hold the human spirit in a vice-like grip of fear, the key to liberating ourselves is found in the power to love unconditionally. In the Agni Yoga teachings it is stated that the three main culprits who block us from experiencing the flow of the Fire of Love are Fear, Doubt and Self-pity. This unholy trinity of traits holds the spirit captive – preventing us from reaching the starry heights where our earthly nature can merge with our essential Universal Nature.
It is painfully obvious that we can no longer continue to live in a heartless society based on the illusion of separation where the ‘other’ is to be feared and despised. How long will it take us to realize it is the serrated blade of fear and hatred that clips the wings of the soul and renders us earth bound?
With the image of that soaring hawk still fresh in my mind, a second question alighted that same May morning. “What is the difference between ‘falling in love’ and ‘rising in love’?” Reflecting on my own experiences, I would say that, generally speaking, when we ‘fall in love’ there is a tendency to be enamored and focused on one particular project or person. This new priority takes over and often causes other parts of our life to fade from view and, without our focused attention, they no longer receive the love and care required to nourish and sustain them.
Conversely, when we ‘rise in love’ more of the vast panorama of life can be taken in. Teilhard de Chardin declared: “Everything that ascends, converges.” Through the ‘eyes of the heart’ we perceive the Principle of Unanimity and understand the interconnectedness and underlying love that infuses and permeates everything in our view.
By rising in love we embrace the world within the infinite space of the heart. This is what the Buddha and The Christ were able to do so skillfully – to hold the pain and sorrow of the human experience with deep compassion and loving understanding in the chalice of their hearts.
These two great lives are irrefutable testaments to the power of Love to transform and dissolve all obstacles and a steadfast assurance that there is a lighted pathway through the present human suffering. Unconditional Love is the Fire of Heaven manifest on Earth through a liberated consciousness no longer constrained by pain and conditioned by fear.
By ‘rising in love’ we lift all beings with us on the wings of compassion.
By ‘rising in love’ the doors of the portal of the heart swing open and we gain entrance to that fiery path which leads towards the Presence we call Unconditional Love.
All Rise Please!