I’m so honored to be in conversation with someone who is discovering the joys of loving another (I assume romantically and for the first time). She found that a poem I wrote accurately reflected the experience she is having, and I am inspired by the way she is connecting it to a universal experience of feeling the joy of being in connection. Here is my reflections on that.
On Falling in Love
This joy is not something we construct, merely something we tune into. I believe this feeling of joy we attribute to early romantic love and infatuation is there all the time, yet most of us only manage to access it when we are enamored with a new partner (the “you”), or when we first have children, or when we have something that feels like “winning” happen in our lives. Then, our egos and strategic minds tell us the feeling comes FROM the event or person, and we create a lot of suffering for ourselves chasing/clinging to people and events that we hope will “make us” feel this happiness. The invitation for me is to simply notice in myself this ability to feel joy and love, and grow that, regardless of who is in the room with “me” (and to feel deep gratitude for the triggering person or event for helping me awaken)!
I spend more and more of my life now with individuals who practice tuning into this kind of beauty and love without attributing it to anything but beauty itself, or perhaps something they may call God. The Bhakti Yoga folks sing to multiple gods, the Kundalinis to a universal energy, and the Sufis to an individual Beloved, but they feel like names for the same reality to me. For me, this feeling of connection to Love exists in individuals who are living as authentic to their true selves as possible, and so my journey is to do the same.
Here is a poem from a poet I deeply admire that discusses this phenomenon. Sometimes I read this poem and imagine it is a romantic reflection and the true love is a lover. Other times, it describes how I feel about my children. It is also easy for me to read it as an elegy to finding faith or connection to divinity, in which the true love is the poet’s God. But the most powerful read for me at this point in my life is to understand this true love is finding myself and my calling.
As an aside, the romantic relationship that was forming at the time I wrote that poem did not last. It was with/about someone very powerful, but also who was far too ego-driven and self-protective to feel like a safe partner for me. I am deeply grateful for the experience though, as I learned a lot about my intuition and what I want in my community by being adventurous and willing to take on a little risk and inquiry.