“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love
and affection”. ~Gautama Buddha
It’s been a rough couple of years, and I recently had the first experience of self-love in a long while. In a yoga class being taught by a friend, he lead us through a breath and visualization exercise, sitting with palms face up for receptivity. We were to begin by focusing on our index finger at the level of our third eye, while doing a bellows breath for a count of 50.
When I closed my eyes I was surprised to see my friend who was leading the class in my third eye vision, but I went with it and kept focus. Soon after, I felt a tingling crawling sensation starting from my left fingers moving up my arm into my heart, then throughout my body. In observance, I thought how sweet, he is sending me and surely everyone on the class some love.
In the next round, when I closed my eyes, Ganesh, the Elephant God of wisdom, and remover of obstacles appeared in my vision. The tingling sensation had spread over my body and in the next breath cycle, my friend appeared again. Then, we went on with the asana portion of the class.
That night I couldn’t sleep from the elation that was lingering in my heart. In meditation the next morning, I thought back to the love I felt from my friend, and realized my heart had softened once again and was truly open in the moment. I received his love as an offering to myself, with true acceptance.
In Buddhism, there is a practice of giving and receiving love and compassion with others, and as we are giving we often forget to accept the benefit that comes from such generosity. We may receive gifts or the notion of love from others, but rarely do we really accept these gifts and offerings into our being, and allow them to truly reside there.
Opening to a space of our own acceptance of who and how we are allows for a truly deep connection to this very moment. Loving what is and feeling deserving of our own love as much as anyone else’s, can be profoundly healing.
Allowing ourselves to be loved by Accepting our own love is a great place to start.
This is how We Are Love.