Vigilance of Self-Love

Mar 12, 2021 | Blog, Featured Read

When I map my own path of self-love, I can see how much of it has been shaped from an honest willingness to see my addictive dance with self-loathing.
Isn’t it amazing how the very source of our suffering– when faced directly– holds the key to our freedom?
That inherited and deeply practiced voice, for some of us so ritualized, so excruciatingly familiar, can be difficult to distinguish from the ordinary sounds of the day.
A subtle self-meanness might be intermingled with the water in the shower, or the sounds of the kids, or the paying of the bills, or exercising, or social media scrolling, or the grocery cart pushing, or the washing of the dishes.
As I have learned to overhear even the subtlest voices of unkindness within me, I have carved out new pathways for love’s claiming.
 There is a maturity required in choosing to step away from the inner drama we feed by telling and re-telling ourselves a story about our flaw, our mistake, our shortcoming, or our failure.
 Self-love comes in our choice to lay our ghosts to rest; to stop tormenting ourselves from the past.
 Self-love as discerning wisdom; that which knows when and how to say no to what is misaligned, or a violation of a boundary, or some compromise of our essential integrity.
 Self-love that knows when we are lying to ourselves, that catches ourselves in the act of self-betrayal — for sex, for attention, for love, for money, for image, for comfort, for belonging, for power — and alerts ourselves to a different choice.
 Self-love that chooses self-respect, in the face of endless temptations.
 Self-love that is big enough to include what doesn’t feel loveable; that which feels too bad, too ugly, too much, too lost, too fat or too skinny, too traumatized, too angry, too sick, too mentally ill, too flawed to love.
 This is a love that can bear me, and you, and them, and life, just as we are. This is a love that bears it ALL.
 Ultimately, self-love is one and the same with Self, one and the same with love, one and the same with our love for others, one and the same with God. No division.
 What does vigilance have to do with it? Vigilance is found in our capacity to tell the tender truth in the face of a lie.
 It’s found in our willingness to catch ourselves in the act of habituated self-loathing, (self-doubt, self-criticism, self-questioning, self-betrayal,) and to stop.
 Vigilance is what’s discovered as we return to the flame of our deeper intent—to come home, to rest, to belong to ourselves, to be claimed by love.

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