How am I contributing to Love?
January 31, 2015
Today we took part in a labyrinth walk as part of a program organized by a counseling center in a church. This is the first time we do this as a family. Children had their own room and were led by volunteer facilitators into a mini labyrinth. The (so-called) grownups were in a large gymnasium where we could walk a giant cloth-made labyrinth. What attracted me specifically was the opportunity to do it together and reflect on the experience as a family. But deep down inside, my true motivation for the walk was exploring the question that I laid down two days ago as the title of my fifth internet-based radio show, “Are we doomed to Love?”
Answering that question was not my purpose; rather, as we gathered in a circle around the facilitator to introduce ourselves, I was more intrigued by another (unfathomable) question that had been tickling me all along, “What is Love?”
I took that last question with me as I entered the journey within. The first phase of the labyrinth walk is about “letting go.” I asked myself what is it that I needed to let go in order to approach or possibly comprehend Love. Things such as inner barriers and judgment came rapidly to mind. There were part of my conscious awareness, and they have been on my radar for a while. No surprise here. What came from within later on between loops is Prejudice—no less than that. Am I prejudiced? Certainly, and the slap in my ‘spiritual face’ last Tuesday was a good reminder that I do not uphold and honor a person’s True Nature in every individual that I come into contact. A neighbor of ours, who doesn’t look very sociable and engaging, came to clear our driveway with his snow blower; it was an ‘out of the blue’ occurrence that forced me to reconsider my opinion of him. What is it that I’m going to do with my judgment of him now? What purpose does it serve, if any?
The other insight that popped up is the need to value and honor differences—differences of any kind; as if twenty years of working in the field of cross-cultural relations didn’t teach me to walk my talk and straighten my thoughts. Obviously, there is always a way to do better and kinder.
Arriving in the center of the labyrinth, I noticed the rays of sun illuminating the path. By then, my accompanying question had morphed into, “How am I contributing to Love?” The sun made me think of fire, and the image of a bonfire came to mind; I could see everyone contributing something to it, be it a twig, a branch or a log—it didn’t matter. What mattered is that together we could make the flames of the fire reach higher, and brighter.
I pondered the question for myself—how can I contribute to this fire of Love? Part of the answer came through my walk as I met a person whose last name was ‘Healy.’ Healing—my own healing, and what I purged in the process—is certainly something I can contribute; it was an inner darkness that vanished into smoke and disappeared in order to no longer burden humanity’s shoulders.
Another element that came into my awareness while in the center is Freedom. I then recalled the words of Krishnamurti that I quoted in the second episode of my radio show.
“If we become totally aware, we have an extraordinary energy. This energy of awareness is freedom.”
The childhood baggage that I burned along the way of my healing process has indeed given way to deeper awareness, and hopefully deeper wisdom. This is also something I can contribute to the fire of Love. This element of freedom made me think about the image that I used for next week’ show, a candle burning in the middle of a long piece of wood.
Love and a fire burning are indeed of the same vein, and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin’s words started to make sense.
Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides, and gravity,
we shall harness for God the energies of Love, and then,
for a second time in the history of the world,
humanity will have discovered Fire.
The return phase of the labyrinth is called Union; it is a phase when we bring back to the world the thoughts and ideas we harnessed in the center. I can’t seem to remember anything specific, as I was playing with the idea of Union with the Divine, the Divine that lay in the center of who we are, deep down, and whose desire is to find a way out. How can we possibly express that ‘Divine in us,’ if not through Love—Love and Appreciation for oneself and for anyone and anything else around us?
As we played with scissors, colored papers, glue and little memos after the experience, in order to crystallize what it meant to us to be a family, I couldn’t help notice a little leaflet that read,
“Those who do not believe in magic will never find it.”