It’s always a good season for love, but spring and Mother’s Day add a deeper dimension.
Love was not a word that got thrown around too much in our house when I was growing up. There were eight of us kids and our parents worked hard to make ends meet and raise us right, according to how they’d been raised I suppose. Love was underlying it all for sure, but we weren’t the Waltons.
I always wanted my mother to be different somehow, to fit more into the image (fantasy?) of “mother” I had in my brain. About fifteen years ago I decided to ask her to say “I love you” before I said it to her and not just in response to my saying it. I still needed to know she loved me and hearing her say it helped me to know. She did begin to say it more, and I began to love her more. And accept her just as she is.
Last month my mother celebrated her 90th birthday. I no longer need her to say “I love you” first. Her willingness to do that once I had asked was enough. That offering gave me a clear path to give and receive love from any direction. She continues to show me the right way to live and to love.
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
“What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.”
― Mother Teresa
To love, in the context of Buddhism, is above all to be there. But being there is not an easy thing. Some training is necessary, some practice. If you are not there, how can you love? Being there is very much an art, the art of meditation, because meditating is bringing your true presence to the here and now. The question that arises is: Do you have time to love?
― Thich Nhat Hanh
Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.
― Leonard Cohen