Valentine's Day -- the day of roses, heart-shaped boxes, and cupids with arrows -- is passing, which is symbolic because the age of equating love with roses, heart-shaped boxes, and cupids is passing. In this age that is passing, we often mistook need for love. How could this be? Doesn't love require signs of affection, shows of constancy, and gifts to seal the bargain? It never has. When someone fears losing your affection, he or she will strive to keep it. Perhaps you have strived to keep someone's affection, too. Fear of loss is not love. When your intention is to avoid losing "love," your gifts are manipulations. When it is to appreciate someone with no strings attached, they are expressions of love.
We are leaving the age in which appearances were all that mattered because they were all that we could see and entering a new age in which essence is becoming visible. The essence of a person is not the clothing she wears or the things he does. People who love them do not stop loving them when they change clothing or do other things. Your essence is not even your history, culture, race, or what you think and do. It is your soul.
A few decades ago "soul" was a theological or poetic word. That is changing. You experience your soul each time you sense yourself as more than a mind and body, your life as meaningful, or you feel that you have gifts to give and you long to give them. You experience your soul when meaning, purpose, gratitude, patience, and appreciation fill you, no matter how briefly. Cultivating those experiences aligns your personality with your soul. That is creating authentic power.
Soul-to-soul connection (not appearance-to-appearance connection) is love. (That is why we call this newsletter Soul Connections.) Think of love as the sun. It shines on everyone. The sun is not afraid of losing your love, and it doesn't even require you to smile back at it. The more you love like the sun shines, the more you become able to look back on Valentine's Day and see it very differently.