Love Unconditionally

Far too often, in the course of our daily lives, we can notice if we are honest, that the feeling of love arises only in certain select circumstances, and that too only after a wide set of conditions in our mind are met. 

With a child, we feel love when they do something or say something we like, or perhaps we feel love when they've surprised us in some beautiful way beyond our expectations of them, and short of this, far too often, we are engaged in that relationship with our child using our mind. Does this not ring true of your experience?

With a spouse, with a sibling, with a parent, with a family member, with a friend, rare are the times we feel the outpouring of love. Perhaps it is a judgment we have of them, or expectation we have of them, or perhaps it is because we so blinded by our beliefs and thoughts and attachments, that we feel love so rarely.

Love is the experience of intimacy, a complete lack of separation from the other.

Why do we feel separate from all these people who we might called "loved ones", but in fact, we withhold our love from so often? Why is intimacy such a rare experience?

We live in a bubble of our own making. And this bubble is made of our self-image, complete with our beliefs, judgments, resentments, non-forgiveness, attachments, anger, fear, greed and more. And this is not a nice, beautiful bubble that might rise to your imagination now. It is an ugly, wicked, prickly, dangerous-looking bubble that surrounds us, and it fluctuates and changes shape all the time, but almost always this bubble is on. 

Everyone else also is in their own bubble like this. Our interactions with each other, even with the so-called "loved ones" is bubble against bubble. Multitudes of experiences might come forth from the friction of rubbing against another one's bubble, and none of those experiences are that of intimacy. Our bubbles are ensuring the separation between us and anyone else. 

If this is the case with "loved ones", Lord knows the shape and form of the bubble when encountering "others", especially others we see in the news, come to hear about but haven't met. Worse, what might this bubble look like when it comes to thinking about or interacting with someone we truly don't like!!

Occasionally, this bubble's size is reduced, and shaped not as prickly as normal, and on the rare occasion, the bubble might barely be present ... and it is in these moments, the experience of love can be felt, because without the bubble, intimacy with the other person(s) will arise. 

Given all this, what would it mean to love unconditionally?

If this task is given to the mind, it will create a 7-step plan, or 12-step process, or a checklist of 5 things to do to love unconditionally! Don't believe me? Go Google "love unconditionally" and see the plethora of articles that come forth on this.

Loving unconditionally isn't a thing that can be done by your mind. i.e. You cannot do a set of things, the result of which is the experience of loving unconditionally!!! Why? Loving unconditionally isn't something you achieve by doing things.

Unconditional love is who you are. Just like happiness without its opposite is your true nature, pure love is your true nature.

Does this mean that you undertake a process of finding all the things that are in the way of your pure love and letting them go one by one, or even many at a time? Well! This is the pull of "self improvement", the ego's trip, to make a better version of itself. You will surely find improvement in your condition with diligent work, but even in the best outcome, a little bubble will always be around your real nature, and that is your newly improved self-image, the "I am more unconditionally loving than before" person :-). 

Just like questing in the world of objects for happiness is a fool's errand, because happiness is your true nature, doing things and changing things about yourself to become a more loving person is ultimately only going to have some relative success, and in that sense, from the standpoint of Truth, that too is a fool's errand!

So what can be done?

When the bubble of your self-image falls, pure love, that is your real nature will shine unhindered, undistorted.

How to make the bubble of your self-image fall? Simply rest in your heart center, withdrawing all attention from the mind, from the senses, from the body. The bubble will fall. Pure love of your true nature will arise.

Ok, that is great, but how can this work in any place other than my meditations, you might ask!! Legitimate question! The more you simply rest in your heart, the more you can readily start from and as the pure love that you are, in meeting the experiences of the world. 

The very same "practice" (if you can call this non-doing of resting in your heart as a "practice"), also enables you to be consciously aware, through the experiences you are experiencing in the world. Witnessing your experiences, concurrent with the occurrence of the experiences, brings the opportunity to witness whether you are rising from and as pure love to meet the experiences, and in turn, if you are not rising as pure love, you can take a deep breath and release the resistance and reaction to life's experience in the moment, and rest in the heart and rise from the heart.

Loving unconditionally is nothing more than a calling to abide in and as your True Self!

"Love unconditionally" is just another way of saying "Be Reiki".


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Comments
  1. by Frans Stiene on October 19, 2016 at 05:43 am

    Thanks Sundar for this blog.
    Just read a book called Pristine Mind by Orgyen Chowang and it had a great chapter about this subject in it.

  2. by Sundar on October 19, 2016 at 01:19 pm

    Thank you Frans.  Touching on this topic again, loving unconditionally inherently implies the elimination of the separate-I, which is what makes conditions in the first place ... and that is another humbling realization, and yet another pointer to surrender!  I will check out Pristine Mind.

  3. by Frans Stiene on October 19, 2016 at 01:45 pm

    Hi Sundar,

    Here are some quotes from the book by Orgyen Chowang about unconditional love:

    When we look at everyone in the world with love and compassion, then our heart is emotionally connected. Our heart is neither frozen nor numb.

    If it is the love for a spouse or partner, and if that love does not change when the relationship ends, then it may be true love. It has to do with recognising that everyone is just like us and wanting everyone, including the person we are no longer with, to have happiness and the causes of happiness.

    We all have different notions of what romantic love. Romantic love is a mental event, often a possessive form of attachment. Ordinary romantic love is not open and relaxed, but narrow and tense. Due to its nature as a form of desire, it can easily lead to anger, jealousy, and rejection. Once we have unconditional love based on a good heart, however, then all forms of love, including romantic love, become more positive and enduring, open and generous. Love becomes less ego-centered. It is rich and inspiring. It provides the lift we need to achieve an enlightened mind.

    Wanting someone as if they were property to possess does not make us a good lover. If we have relationships and connections deteriorate and end badly. This occurs almost always because one or both partners do not have an attitude of true love that takes precedence over whatever petty annoyances their ordinary minds experience. The relationship may be based on some motive that we mistakenly think is love. Often, it is based on physical or emotional attraction alone. Enduring love is not based on this type of love. If love does not have this enduring characteristic, it is always unhealthy and based on cravings for security in the world of ordinary mind. This is why so many relationships end with great disappointment and suffering. This does not mean that all relationships should necessarily last forever. What it does mean is that regardless of how long the romance or relationship lasts, and even after it ends, this characteristic of unconditional love remains.

    The situation of two people trying to connect with each other can be complicated because their choices and experiences in the relationship are driven by egocentric feelings. Each feels the other person exists only for them and that all aspects of the relationship should be a reflection of their own wants and demands. Their connection is not based on a wish to enjoy the world together. They do not have a wish to really give the other person happiness. It is based on “I want.” When such wishes are frustrated, it is easy for the two people to upset at each other. Then the relationship deteriorates and, in extreme cases, it can even become dangerous.


    Love does not mean that loved ones never separate, but it does mean that if they stay together, they stay together very harmoniously. Even if they break, up, they do so harmoniously. therefore, any kind of love, especially romantic love, is best when it is based on a good heart.

    In true love our mind and our heart are open to everyone. We are not prejudiced toward any particular individual, culture, or group. We are truly open to all beings.

    This does not necessarily mean that we have no conflict with other beings. It just means that having conflict does not signify that we do not love someone.

    Love is a permanent state that transcends the ups and downs of the relationship. I do not think, “We disagreed; therefore I do not care about her happiness anymore.” We may strongly disagree on any number of topics, or we may even be fighting, but still I want the other person to be happy. If we have an open mind, it means we have a flexible, adaptable mind. We do not get worked up over little things. The more we have the perspective of a good heart, the less reactive we are to situations that some might find provocative. That does not mean we do not get upset at times. We may get upset, but we still have understanding and continue to hold best wishes for that other person. Our love is a permanent state that never leaves us. We have an open-minded perspective that makes it easier for us to forgive and forget. We do not hold grudges. This is the open-minded, enduring, and universal kind of love that we must cultivate if we are to have intimate connections with load ones, communicate effectively with others, and attain ultimate enlightenment.

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