Before we can become a clear channel through which love can freely flow, the ways we are wounded must come to the surface and be exposed. Love as a healing power can operate only on what presents itself to be healed. As long as our wounding remains hidden, it can only fester.

ā€” John Welwood

We know love as an emotion. We’re wired to seek and connect with it. As an emotional state, love certainly feels amazing and rewarding. Even at this level, we have to surface our wounds to be able to experience the emotional richness of love.

balloons manLove is also wholeness. Love doesn’t end at the emotional level. It has many degrees that actually begin at a much expanded place than emotion. Love is wholeness because in its true state no separation can exist in it.

Wounds are part of us, but they are separating experiences. Wounds move us away from wholeness to separation. Wounding happens, it’s part of living, learning, growing and being human. We can’t avoid wounds, nor do we want to. We can become wiser about allowing wounds, but the road to that wisdom goes through certain life events that have wholeness hidden in them.

As we’re going through them and on the surface, these life events look anything but whole. And we can live these events but not go through them. In other words, we never bring home the learning.

Emotional wounds, like physical ones, are painful. We’re also wired to avoid pain. In normal circumstances this is a good thing; you want to keep your hand at a safe distance from a flame. But when you keep your emotional wounds away from yourself, you’re in effect distancing yourself from yourself!

Getting a bird’s eye view of your life has its place, but this distancing isn’t that. This is a pushing away of essential parts of us. It’s a contracting action which makes us small and reduces our options. It also severely disables our self-awareness, without which there’s no understanding.

We need understanding to process life experiences. Our wounds show us what still needs processing. What we don’t process, we don’t integrate. When we don’t integrate or digest life events, we remain in a state of separation.

Love isn’t available in a state of separation. When love isn’t available, healing isn’t available. Love can make us whole. It can end the separation, but it has to be invited and allowed to stay. When we push our wounds away, we also push love away.

When wounds heal, there’s more love available. In turn, love heals us yet more still. We have to be willing to sit with a wound and listen to it. Wounds can’t be banished. We think if we ignore it, it will go away. We can’t arrive at wholeness that way. It only deepens the wound.

There’s wholeness inside each wound. To release it, we have to acknowledge the wound, hold space with it and infuse it with our awareness. Our awareness or attention is a type of love. Even if we can’t love the wound at first, it still feels love from us when we acknowledge it. Over time, it releases the wholeness and love that’s hidden and trapped on its inside.

Then we are free.


The Essential Lesson of Self-Love

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Wounds, Love, Wholeness