Friday, March 21, 2014

Expansive Love

With an amazing partner, recently I have been experiencing love in ways that I have never really known. What we create and share with one another fulfills us both and expands outward, into our other relationships. To varying degrees, everyone around us is benefiting from the love we've found and continue to grow.

Our acceptance and affection for one another is helping us to be unabashedly authentic and more eagerly accepting. We are better able to appreciate the unique inner beauty of others and offer them love that may continue to radiate outward, gaining momentum from those capable of contributing to it.

Clearly there is no guarantee that our love will extend beyond our direct influence. Some relationships may fully absorb the love extended to them, and they may continue do so until they either achieve their own capacity for expansion or eventually implode in the vacuum of their own bottomlessness.

Because this is the first relationship in which I've known this kind of love, past experience tells me that it is highly uncommon, and the vast majority of other relationships will never exhibit this tremendous capacity for love beyond its participants. Yet, I am hopeful that my past experience is merely an indication that I had not yet developed my own ability to contribute to an expansively loving relationship, and now that I have, I can easily form such a relationship with one who also has this capability. Still, I also recognize that the level of experience in human relationships and personal growth that I have achieved thus far is also uncommon, so I must continue to assume that finding others who are capable of contributing to an expansively loving relationship is not very likely.

The existence of relationships that ultimately prove to be incapable of expansion is a certainty that causes me concern. My concern is over the perpetual and complete lack of reciprocal nourishment offered by those relationships. I recognize and fear the strain I they would come to place on this expansively loving relationship I hold so dearly.

So I am protective of this amazingly fulfilling and generously overflowing relationship. I allow our love to expand as freely as possible, yet I'm also on lookout for potentially vampiric connections that are capable of slowly poisoning our astonishingly beautiful love from the outside in.

To protect this expansive love, I know I must be vigilant in my recognition and avoidance of such passive toxicity. This vigilance, though necessary, also presents a danger in over-application. I expect I will need to gain experience and skill in wielding this double-edged sword, and must take great care in doing so.

While I am clearly reveling in this newfound kind of love, I also must not allow my appreciation of it to create a sense that other loves are necessarily inferior. To do so would be incredibly foolish and harshly unappreciative of their own unique nature. While I recognize that I must avoid this myopic perspective, I also recognize that it will be challenging at times.

I began this somewhat rambling essay by saying that I've never really known this kind of love. I say this because I've only ever theorized its existence. I believed it could be, hoped it would be, and at the same time knew that it might never be a kind of love I'd experience. I am both astounded and overjoyed that I have come to know it.

Ever since I knew enough to know that I should actually personally consider religion, faith and spirituality rather than accept that of my culture and society without question, I have considered myself agnostic, practically faithless and quite non-spiritual. However, my recent explorations of loving human relationships in general, and this remarkable relationship in particular, have opened my eyes to what appears to be the spiritual nature of love.  It's surprising and difficult to believe that love may be my path to finding and understanding my spirituality, but I'm willing to accept it and explore it.

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