by Patrick Quanten MD
We have talked about Love on many occasions, mainly because it is the most important issue in our lives. There is no getting away from the fact that without it, there can be no happiness. Giving as well as receiving Love are the essential ingredients of human life. (See "Love - or something like it")
Back in the 1980's a study was carried out at an intensive care unit in a major Californian hospital (USA) to established the single most important factor in people's recovery from a heart attack. It turned out not to be diet related. It was not exercise. It was not cholesterol levels, sugar levels or blood pressure. It wasn't even whether these people were loved or not. It was whether or not these people believed they were loved.
What you believe is what you are creating. Your own system determines how it is going to live and what is going to happen next. It is of course influenced by its surroundings, but it chooses what the effect will be. You choose how your surroundings are going to affect your life!
So even if you are surrounded by love, you may not experience its life-giving power, depending on how you will allow this love to infiltrate your life. But why would you not let it? Wouldn't everybody grab the opportunity to be loved, to bathe in the splendour of love, to allow love to shape their lives?
Of course you would need to establish what Love actually means to you in the first place. Many splendid things have been called love, but are they really? What kind of love are you after? To remind you of the various possibilities you could read The Object of Love.
And then there is the ultimate: the thing we call Unconditional Love. The love that does not demand anything in return must be the ultimate goal. We even go as far as telling people that loving themselves no matter what mistakes you make, loving thy neighbour no matter how horrible they are, loving people that actually "do" wrong, is an essential commandment in life. Not only Christianity, but also long before that and ever since then, all of the major religions are preaching that same message. It is one of the few guidelines throughout history and across all cultures that has never changed. So it must be important. And yet, we see very little evidence of it in our daily lives. This keeps amazing me, since we are all told the same thing and have been told the same thing for as far back as humanity can recall.
The other fundamental rule of Nature that concerns us here is the "reap as you sow"-adagio. The action-reaction law that teaches us that we will only get out of life what we put into it. In short, if you spread love and happiness, you will find love and happiness. How much evidence do you see around you of that? And yet, once again, this knowledge has been around for many thousands of years, across the globe.
What is happening? What are we missing?
Here's a Thought
In our every day life we believe that for life to be sustainable we need oxygen. There will not be any life when the atmosphere runs out of the vital stuff. We look around us and see that all life, in one form or another, relies on oxygen.
However, science has provided us with a few more facts than that. We now know that some bacteria thrive in the absence of oxygen (for example, the tetanus bacilla). In fact, these bacteria will die quickly when exposed to oxygen. So, it is a myth that life is only sustainable under well-determined conditions and that these conditions are restrictive and exclusive to the ones we are aware of in our day-to-day lives.
More over, we have discovered that some life forms exist in what we would call the most hostile and life-destroying conditions. Scientists have found evidence of life in the driest places, in the hottest places, in the darkest places and even in an atmosphere of noxious gases. There is life sustained by a sulphurous atmosphere, no matter how deadly that is to life as we observe it.
The conclusion we have to come to is that, no matter what the environment, life can and will adapt so it can continue. Nature has a way of maintaining life of some sort in any circumstance you care to imagine. Consequently, those life forms' requirements for survival are totally different from our normal every day ones. They may be difficult to understand and we may not be inclined to give them much thought, as they are seemingly irrelevant to our situation. Nevertheless, if we care to understand life itself we need to include all forms in order to be able to comprehend the underlying laws. A better and more accurate understanding of the laws governing life itself will enrich our own life, as we are able to incorporate the "exception" or the "abnormal" into the whole of the spectrum. They become as normal as needing oxygen, only located in a different part of the scale of "normal".
Apart from our understanding that we need oxygen to survive, we also know that human beings need love. Life, its happiness and its health, depends heavily on an atmosphere of love. The more you bathe in it, the more you move around in it, the more you breathe it, the better life itself becomes. It has been said that without love there is nothing; without love we cannot survive.
But what if there is a human life form that does not need love, as you see it? What if there are humans who would positively die in the presence of love?
Crazy. - Never.
That's what we thought before we found life sustained by sulphur gases!
Here is what I mean.
Have you never experienced a person showered with love, who has walked out of your life? It is easy, with hindsight, to dismiss it as "not the real thing". Sure, there are inappropriate kinds of love as we have discussed in other places; emotions that we call love but that are actual reflections of our needs, projected onto objects and people. Sure, we even accept that love can smother someone and stunt his/her personal growth. But what if you were giving love without asking a return? What if the love you handed to this other person was the closest you could get to "unconditional", no strings attached? Under those circumstances can you still understand why that person left?
What has happened to the law that says that you will receive what you put in? How come you didn't receive "unconditional love"? You may feel that you have been taken advantage off. You may feel that someone was just grabbing everything they could while it was on offer, with no regard for the person giving it. And I am not saying that these things don't happen. Sometimes people "steal" other people's air; they take someone's oxygen; they take their breath away. Fine. But what if you still think that the other person is essentially a good person? Then why wouldn't a good, caring, person give you all the love he/she has, especially if you yourself are covering them with love, unconditionally? Why weren't your messages received and read properly? Why was your love being turned down, when all you did was to supply someone with the most perfect living conditions anyone could dream off? Maybe this other person equally felt that you refused his/her unconditional love? Can it be that two people, both good and honest, can offer each other the only real source of life, Unconditional Love, and that neither actually wants it?
And yet, it happens.
And here is how it could happen.
Suppose both of these life forms are designed to live in totally different conditions. Suppose one is an oxygen breather and the other is a sulphur breather. Both knowing what is required to maintain life. Both extremely willing to help others survive. Both willing to share the life source with the other. Both, being unselfish and caring unconditionally, will offer the other their atmosphere, their life. And both start to suffocate. They both are dying. Neither can understand why this is happening to them. Neither understands why the other is rejecting their unselfish offer and is trying hard to impose his/her own. Neither wants to get out, but life is draining away quickly.
If we continue the analogy between oxygen and love, we could say that for some of us the supreme goal is to achieve unconditional love, to be surrounded by as much oxygen as we will ever need. But for others, oxygen is a killer. It suffocates. It removes the sulphur they need for their survival. But they themselves are more than willing to give you their sulphur unconditionally. And yet, how can we believe that anyone needs a loveless, an oxygen free, environment for his or her survival?
We know that stress is a killer. Medical authorities have pages of diseases that are caused or aggravated by stress. Hence all the emphasis is on relaxation, calmness and pampering yourself. Nevertheless, we still see people around us who positively thrive in stressful conditions. We all know people who would get nothing done if it wasn't for the pressure and stress that caused them to fire up and keep moving. Take their stress away and they collapse. Their lives become meaningless and empty and as a person they waste away. So what's good for one is not necessarily good for the other. Maybe that goes for oxygen too. And love.
If a person's survival kit included the need to find enemies everywhere, to see the environment as threatening and to be on the alert all the time, then removing the hostile environment would effectively remove their reason for living. What drives these people to breathe and live is the necessity to contrive everything around them as being potentially harmful to the essence of their being. There can be nothing in the "kindness" or "caring" department that will enhance their lives. The more their surroundings are taking care of them, the more love there is, the more softness and tenderness, the greater the need for a fight-back.
When within their existence the storms of life are settling, when there no longer are reasons to argue, to disagree, to be nasty, the panic starts to increase. Living becomes laboured. Breathing becomes difficult. When life is seemingly simple and has all the hallmarks of enjoyment, the fight for survival, the fire of life, gets hypnotised into a deep sleep. The sleep before death. There is a great urgency for panic. The fight-back has begun. The struggle for survival, for freedom from unconditional love - "It doesn't exist! There is always a hidden agenda!" -, is now in full swing. Enemies need to be made out of the love that is available, because it is precisely that love that kills. Do not take it personally. It is not something you have done, or not done. It is simply the fact that you breathe oxygen and this other person breathes sulphur; simply the fact that you require love for your survival, and the other needs to fight. You survive on peace. Someone else survives on war. It gives them a purpose, a reason to be, a clearly defined path.
And interestingly, in Homoeopathy the sulphur personality features are classified under the following headings: 1) a selfish and materialistic side together with its polar opposite, generosity; 2) physical and emotional eruptiveness and heat; and 3) intellectual slant of mind with its antithesis, pseudo-intellectualism. Maybe this is one example of a set of people, finding it difficult to have a peaceful, unassuming and simple life.
Why are we becoming more aware of these different life sources now? What is it in the evolution of mankind that gives us these crazy ideas?
In our Western society there is a growing tendency for more tolerance. There is also a general belief that we are nearing the critical mass that is required to change the face of our society, whereby Love is taking central stage. We are being bombarded with love (in all its human aspects), with our feminine side, with softness, with relaxing, with calming, with letting go, with self-control, with forgiving. The harshness is taken right out of our lives. We no longer have to "fend" for our own food; it's done for you. We no longer have to provide "justice"; it's being done for us. We no longer establish our own place in the hierarchy of society; it's being designated to you. Our path in life is neatly set out for us and obstacles are being removed or at least made easier to overcome. You know what I mean: the caring approach. Everything is made better, easier, simpler for us. There is no need to fight anymore for what you would like or what you regard as yours; it's being given to you. So now the only thing you need to do, is to go and enjoy life. Or what's left of it!
We no longer have to establish and fight for our place in society. We have a god-given right to it! So relax and enjoy the ride.
But if I don't need to fight for my place, for the air that I breathe, what's the point of being here. We will now all be the same. No one will even notice that I am here. Why should we all want to breathe pure oxygen? Why should we all want to be molly-cuddled? Why should we all want peace? Why should we all want to enjoy an easy life?
The truth is we don't. Some of us cannot live with the idea that the air will be full of love and that nothing will ever cause a fight or an argument any more. Some of us have the need to feel alive, and if that means feeling pain. So be it. In order to feel fully alive I will harm myself. The pain will be a constant reminder of the fact that I am alive, and as long as I am alive, I am doing well. The most efficient way to feel pain, sure to succeed, is to damage love. All the things and people you care about will be hurt, enticed into fights, provoked and if all else fails completely cut out of your life. That will hurt you more than anyone else. Permanent pain is what you need in order to register the message that you are still alive, still surviving. It's the continuing outside stimulation that will allow you to monitor how alive you are. And sometimes you need a lot of pain to get the message.
Not all of us have an innate sense of being alive. When your senses are all tuned to the outside world, then those will be the signals that you pick up and can analyse. Then you will need to hurt yourself in order to be sure that you are alive. However, more and more of us are learning to re-tune and listen to the inner messages, and being alive means something totally different then. There will then no longer be a need to get confirmation from the outside. Then there can be peace, both in and outside, as there is no more need to constantly respond to the outer environment. You are alive and well as long as the inner environment is well balanced and at peace.
Do not Condemn
All of the above should not lead us to any conclusions outside the plain observations. In other words, one person is no better than another. We all take up a place within the workings of the Universe. We all have a specific role to play and the only view we have of the Universe is from the place we find ourselves in.
Peace to all man is all very nice and is a very appealing thought, but the truth may be different. It may well be that without the bashing and the fighting there could be no progress at this stage of the human development. It could well be that, for now, we will have to accept the fact that peace and love is not everybody's daily bread, even if society is not allowing us to openly say anything like that. It is "politically incorrect" to acknowledge that someone needs the fighting and the arguing to stay alive. Equally, it is unacceptable that that person would admit to such reality. That is seen and judged as madness and pure evilness.
People that haven't found their inner peace yet have to, in our civilised society, suppress their own reality and go underground with their real feelings. In order to be accepted in such a community they are obliged to present their feuds as some form of "self-defense". It is still very much accepted that a person can be allowed to be evil as long as he/she is defending him/her-self or their possessions. Have you ever wondered why the same action is accepted as normal just because the circumstances differ? So, not only isn't killing always a crime according to human laws, even religion, our so-called spiritual guide, has adopted a similar attitude. The only reasonable explanation is that a great number of people are in desperate need to have their actions protected from the simple age-old truth, which says, "Thou shall not kill".
One can argue that having accepted total peace is a higher development plane for a human being. No doubt it is true to say that the human race is evolving in a more spiritual direction and that consequently, peace and love will have to become the main pillars on which the existence of that part of the Universe will be based. However, as we are only in the development stage, one has to ask the question how we could be persuaded towards adopting peace as our daily bread? Isn't the answer by continually tasting the bitterness of the alternatives?
Is it not right that we learn the most through making mistakes? This of course means that mistakes are not real mistakes, they are mere trials. Through using the belief that all evil can and must be blamed on outside forces we learn to be on our guard all the time and to fight for survival. Yet, we will not experience that survival is an inherent gift of life and that it actually is more effective if we can just let it happen, rather than fight for it. But the only way to find out is to fight. To fight until we are so tired, exhausted and disappointed because the ultimate victory remains completely elusive, that we decide to give up the fight and are preparing for our demise. It is only then that we can experience that life continues by itself and much smoother and more enjoyable than we could have ever dreamed of.
It is only through employing the human laws and beliefs and proving them to be ineffective, inadequate and totally useless that we have any reason at all to abandon them. We cannot hope to live in real peace - peace within ourselves - unless we have become totally convinced of the futility of fighting. Up to that point we have to cling on to the fight as the only means of surviving that we can trust.
That is why people talk a lot about peace, about loving, about kindness and caring, and yet continue to destroy and destruct the world in which they live, on a large scale as well as on a personal level. Many of us are not comfortable with the reality of total peace; the great majority of us subscribe to the idea, but reject suggestions that our own actions contradict the words we speak. The "But that's different" excuse is the main pillar of our argument. In reality and in Life, there is no "different"; there are no exceptions. There is only Natural Law, working the same for all and everyone, the great and small, the powerful and insignificant, the smooth and rough.
There is no mileage in condemning people for not implementing peace. We should only concern ourselves with the peace inside our own heart. It is hard enough to keep that peace at all times and turning your attention away from it in the direction of someone else's problems is sure to let your own peace slip away. Do not criticise others as you have no idea, no understanding, of what is required for them to learn what they need to learn. If they are not given the opportunity to learn important lessons, you deprive them of the opportunity to develop, to grow. You effectively, by trying to protect, by trying to instruct, deny them their own teaching. If you really want to help, you should learn to sit and be quiet. Let the war rage, let the tempest thunder along. Do not interfere, do not try and alter the course it takes. This is the most direct route to the limitations of anyone's world. No reaction allows you to shoot straight through all the obstacles, and before you know it you are facing the wall. The wall signifies the end of the world, the limits you have put on your life. Once you are there, you can no longer deny its existence. It is your wall, and it will be your decision whether or not you are going to stay within the boundaries of it, trying to continue to pretend that there is nothing more. And that will hurt.
Deciding that life has to change, that the old ways have stopped satisfying you and have stopped delivering the kind of life you thought it could, is the most painful experience you can have. It is a rebirth. The person that you have been will have to die and a new one will be born. Both process, we know, are the most excruciating experiences a human being has. The reward are new pastures, a world we cannot even dream off.
It is a personal decision, not one a government can make for us. No democracy can deliver personal happiness.
It is time to be yourself, and just yourself. Let others be. Accept them as they are. And accept their wars as part of your peace. . Learn to become still in the midst of violence. Learn to continue breathing oxygen whilst surrounded by sulphur.
Give Unconditional Love, and allow others to return it with fire and brimstone.