A Gift of Love
by Advaita Mihai Stoian
People are so consumed with their problems and activities and forget, or do not even consider, the most precious gift that can be given or received, the gift which is without price, the ‘gift of Love’. The following article is an attempt to shed light upon the gift of Love we permanently receive and sometimes give.
Love as a gift from GOD – the initiation into the art of communion with God by realizing the very nature of Love
This presentation refers to a certain understanding about Love, and how we can very easily and almost spontaneously be in a state of communion with God by consciously realizing this aspect of Love.
Many spiritual traditions say that the ultimate source of Love in the universe is God, and this is not a very big mystery, most people seem to understand this. Since Love is a vibration it will have its source in God (the ultimate source of all vibrations) and from there it expands throughout the Universe through the mysterious process of occult resonance. We can therefore say that everybody who has Love, shares Love or gives Love, receives this Love from God by a process of occult resonance (that takes place consciously or not). Furthermore, by loving and being Loved, we have the immense opportunity to become aware of the fact that the Love we have and the Love we give is a gift that has been given to us. This simple awareness will place us in a state of ineffable and intimate communion with God every time we give or receive Love; it will transform Love in our “communication channel” with God.
It might seem very simple, but if we look around we can see that very often people are not very good in receiving gifts, especially receiving gifts from God. Often people have the attitude of a spoilt child who receives a gift from their parents and without even saying the smallest “thank you”, takes the gift, unwraps it and sometimes even criticizes it for its characteristics.
Sometimes they say, “Oh, it’s again Love with all its complications and the mess of attachments, jealousy, concerns, and emotional vulnerability that comes with it! You got me the same thing last year and you have given it to me ever since I was born!” This kind of superficial attitude goes well with the attitude of consuming the fruits of the actions, without caring about the action itself, the so called “consumerism” that we have nowadays. This makes us also consume the gifts that we have received without actually really noticing them and their value. We can see this for example in the way that people use the gifts they receive from nature: sometimes we can see an extremely intelligent person using their intelligence for diabolical achievements or for banal reasons, and this is only possible because the person is unaware of this natural gift. Similarly, some people have a precious intuition which they use to find out if their Lover is cheating on them or not, instead of using such an amazing gift for the higher purposes for which they have received the gift! All these situations arise because we do not know, or we are unaware of the gifts we have received.
To return to the example of the spoilt child, sometimes a child who is spoiled gets a gift and destroys it before he starts to know that gift and when he starts to understand the value of that gift it is usually too late because it is broken, he “consumed” it before getting the chance to learn how to use it. Of course, by having this kind of attitude in life we can also very often ruin the chances to properly use the lessons we are given as a gift.
In days of yore, there was a game that was played by two good friends in order to become more aware about the act of receiving. Nowadays, it is known in some places as “the wishbone game” because it is played by each holding the Y shaped bone from the chest of a chicken on one end and then breaking it. The one who gets the bigger part will give it to the one with the smaller part and this is how the game begins. The winner of this game was the one who managed to give a gift to the other one without the first one noticing it, but just taking it and using it directly. The rule was that every time you received an object from the other friend you have to say “I know”!
The profound meaning of this game is in fact very close to the tantric teachings that encourage people to increase the state of permanent awareness that will eventually take them out of this robotic attitude that destroys our life by making us become unaware of the gifts we constantly receive from life, from the environment and from people, while ultimately becoming unaware of life itself. Therefore, this ancient game was played in order to extend our awareness of the things we take in unconsciously. This phenomenon of taking in the entire stimulus, all the gifts from life, and all our attitudes in an unconscious manner leads us deeper and deeper into a state of ignorance and enhances our own limitations. All that comes to us is transformed into a limitation because we just “engulf” it without awareness.
On the contrary, when we cut off these mechanisms by starting to be aware of everything that comes to us we gradually begin to cut off the chains of our ignorance and to become freer. All that we receive becomes many reasons for freedom and happiness that do not enchain us, but instead support our freedom.
In a similar way we can play this game with Love. People who are unaware that Love is a gift, (in fact the most precious gift that we receive in this life and actually that which links us to God) consume Love, they misuse it instead of just contemplating it and appreciating it for its right value. Having Love and consuming Love is not the same thing. People usually use Love in a very primitive way, “squeezing” the Love feeling in order to get as much pleasant emotions, sentimental comfort, and good time together with the object of our Love, and so on.
We often do that instead of developing this extraordinary energy that will give our soul wings to fly to the sky.
We tend to use Love for very few effects which we can see from the first sight. We take Love from God for granted, together with all that comes with it like joy, pleasure, the happiness to have it, and the facilities which Love offers to the soul. However, by taking it unconsciously, we just jump on it and start to consume it unconsciously, searching only for its effects, and by misusing it we lose it!
The reason we fall into this mistake is the very simple mechanism of our mind that runs the “show” of our life most of the time. The mind is usually unaware of some causes just because of the effects those causes generate – for example, if you look out through the window of your room you cannot see the air, but you will see the effects of the air moving, because you will see the trees and the leaves moving – in this way we sometimes perceive the causes only by perceiving the effects of those causes. Due to this, the effects are often “covering” the cause and we cannot see it. This attitude, or this habit of our mind, together with the consumer attitude blinds us from perceiving the real sources of the things we receive in our life and that we take for granted.
We don’t care where the food comes from, or how it is made, we just care if it satisfies our desires. We don’t care where everything that is given to us comes from and what it generates, we just care about our own needs. We are no longer amazed by the fact that we exist, that we have this amazing body that is the most sophisticated “toy” we have ever received (and probably will ever do). We are not amazed by the fact that we are given the capacity to feel pleasure and to enjoy this experience in life, and we are not fascinated by the experience of Love. All of this is because we are too busy considering the effects of all these Divine Gifts!
Because of this attitude we don’t have time to perceive Love itself, but we are always focusing on the effects Love has upon us and as a consequence when we think about Love we think about the tears we shed, the joy we have, the pleasure we get when we are in Love. We don’t speak about Love itself, and because of this we are pushed forward towards the status of that little spoiled ungrateful child.
In doing so, we don’t even have time to wonder “who gave this amazing gift to us?” Otherwise we would have the chance to “meet” God at least on every occasion in which Love was present in our hearts as a gift from Him.
By not knowing and not caring where Love comes from, we don’t know who to ask for more, we just start to suffer and cry when it is gone, like the stupid spoiled child who jumps on the floor screaming with unhappiness when his toys are taken away.
Due to this attitude in front of God’s precious gift of Love people often look like the dumb child in front of the Divine eyes. Yet the Divine eyes can see the Divine nature deep inside the dumb child.
There is another surprising aspect in realizing the fact that Love is a gift from God: this is the clearest and most simple proof we can have that God exists! How can you receive a present from someone that doesn’t exist? To realize that Love is a gift from God means to realize in fact a very important secret of our life. The aim is not only to feel Love, but also to look at it as a precious gift and then we will be able and free to lift our spiritual eyes in order to see the One who gave us this gift. In this way, we have a chance to rise above this consumer attitude, above this stage of “homo economicus” that we have reached nowadays, and to perceive the SOURCE of the most precious gift in this life.
If in this life we have permanently ignored the fact that Love is a gift from God, we live a life which is somehow ungrateful, a life which is given and not appreciated, we cannot understand it therefore we go through it without even living it.
Instead of just trying to devour all the benefits that come from Love by perceiving Love only through its effects, we will now aim to perceive Love as a Divine gift, and this should not take much practice since we are already able to Love.
However, when we aim to perceive Love as a Divine gift then we will perceive Love itself, the substance of Love and what is revealed in our hearts. We will then have the amazing chance to discover what all the saints have said in the moment of their enlightenment: we will realize that Love is God!
When we manage to perceive Love as a gift from God we have the amazing revelation that God is giving Himself to us in the shape of Love so that in this way we will always accept Him in our hearts. But only when we realize this consciously will we be able to enjoy His presence and not only the effects of His presence in our hearts. This is one of the most important steps we can make for meeting God in this life.
Sometimes we say that we have to open our hearts for God, but in fact God always comes into our hearts by the Love He gives to us. In the moments we fall in Love, in the moments we feel Love, we have already accepted God into our heart. However, only when we are able to receive this Present consciously will we be able to become aware of the Divine Presence.
This represents a genuine initiation into this mystery of the Heart. We realize that the Heart is the receptacle of this Divine Present. We can practice this awareness in any moment of the day, in any moment of the night, and at any time in our life, and when we forget about it we just miss the chance to meet the One who gave us this present. When we remember, then again we get this amazing chance! It is always up to us to live up to this revelation or to forget it and to live in this attitude of using Love or seeing Love only for its effects.
For this initiation everyone who was ever in Love is qualified. Even for those who are skeptical, Love is an undeniable truth and it can be experienced as a Present and this will open up another perspective.
I invite you all to meditate upon Love as a Gift from God. Play the music that you will find here and with your eyes closed, focus your attention in the chest area, in the middle of it. Feel pleasant vibrations at this level, expanding and radiating the feeling of Love without any object. Aim to realize gradually that this is a process of resonance and that these Love vibrations are coming from a Macrocosmic source that is GOD’s Heart with which you are now in a state of communion. Realize the nature of Present that these Love vibrations have…
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