In a recent interview on TV, the lovely movie actress Kim Novak reflected back on her first audition. The director asked her to look into the camera and to say what it was that she really, really wanted above everything else. She replied "I just want to be loved." What she expressed is what we all want, what we seek and search for.
It doesn't matter which culture or religion or nonreligious tradition we belong to or our accomplishments or mistakes. Wealthy or poor, young or old, our sexual preference, personality type, male or female, we all want to feel loved. Think of the millions of people in the world from prisoners to displaced refugees, the hungry and lonely, and don't forget the wealthy, our family members and friends and folks in the Rogue Valley. The one thing everyone, deep down, really wants is to be loved and accepted.
If we felt loved we would not spend so much time and energy seeking it. We feel a lack, a deficiency. We search for the perfect partner to love us and to love. We seek things and status symbols that will give us the acceptance we want. Listening to the judgmental ego mind we compare ourselves to everyone else and believe we are separate and feel alone and unloved. The problem is that we listen to it and worst of all, believe it. Seek and do not find is its motto. Why do we listen to it? We don't have to. It is a choice.
When a judgment swiftly enters your mind ask yourself: Does this come from love? Sitting at the Holiday table, watch your thoughts. Your power lies in watching them and changing them. Judgment from the ego means what we see in others is also hidden within ourselves. Something we do not want to accept. This tragic process of projecting separates us and locks out love; for everyone including you. You do not love something you condemn. Even if it is complementary: "She is so beautiful." What that really amounts to is envy. Or perhaps, "He sure has a drinking problem." Maybe so, but what addiction do you have — maybe chocolate? We project onto others and thereby lock them up tight with the jailer's padlock. Maybe in the last year they have changed. We will see it if we decide to look with new eyes of acceptance and love, that's the gift. Looked at this way, judgment really hurts — but whom? Isn't it silly to judge and separate and lock each other into grievances and perceptions from the past? We impose the past onto the present and wonder why we aren't having fun.
Changing the thoughts and beliefs gives the freedom we seek. Release others; the aunts and uncles, ex-spouses, mothers, fathers, bosses, friends, enemies and you release yourself. Why hold on to the opinions and grievances? Do you like suffering? When we give acceptance, we have acceptance. What you give you receive. Give love this Christmas and you will have it.
If a cutting remark makes its way to your ears at a holiday gathering, smile and give them the love they need. Their remark is a sure sign there's a grievance lurking in a corner of that mind. They are miserable, they do not feel loved. They need it badly. Hold your tongue. I am sure you could deliver a response equally cutting but stop yourself and ask: Does this come from love? See everything as either love or a call for love.
If we do not feel love it is because we do not give love. When you give it you also have it and you receive it. What do you really want for Christmas? What do they want for Christmas? Give the gift of love and acceptance to them and you, too, will have it.
Sally McKirgan facilitates A Course In Miracles study group and the Ashland Daily Tidings Inner Peace Column. Send 600 to 700 word articles to firstname.lastname@example.org or for information about several Course Study groups offered in the Rogue Valley. Visit her blog at www.innerpeaceforyou.me for more tips on Inner Peace.