This Valentine's day many are freely basking in the joy of being legally married while the fate of 18,000 gay and lesbian marriages in California lies in the hands of the State Supreme Court. This is precisely why it's critical, whether you are gay, straight, black, white, and all shades in between to remember the distinction between being married and being in love.
Following the passage of Proposition 8 in November I was experiencing deep anger and at the time unsure of how to resolve it. I went to one of my teachers, Ron Hulnick, and through tears I said, "Help me, I don't know what to do with my anger." In this moment of authentic expression my experience transformed. Through Ron's support I came to know myself above all else as a loving being even deeper than I had known before. My resolution revealed to me that love knows no sexual orientation. In all things, love only recognizes itself.
Yes, marriage is a legal arrangement that grants couples certain rights. Regardless, laws, even the ones that try, cannot take away one's freedom to choose to be in love or to choose who they want to love. LGBT people have been fighting for legal validation of love and relationship for a very long time. I am in alignment with the need for equal rights. However, like joy, bliss, and divinity, love is an internal essence that cannot be created or destroyed, and therefore, needs no government validation
Experiencing love is a result of an inner choice to dwell in this essence, whether you are a man or woman who chooses to love a man or woman. It exists beyond the mind, body, and sex organs.
I was recently working with a gay client and we uncovered unconscious, negative patterns that seemed to be keeping him from having intimate relationships. What we discovered is that he was holding onto an old, false belief that, "relationships are only for men and women." However, even deeper than this belief was an ingrained sense of unworthiness of love and relationships. When I began to explore the truth with my client, he realized that he can internally access an experience of self-loving and in so doing begin to resolve this unworthiness. Also, he realized that, "relationships are for the expression of love, regardless of the sex of the individuals." This very lesson is one of the gifts that LGBT people offer to society.
Many in the LGBT community experience this unworthiness as a result of being told for so long that varied expressions of love are not valid. It is this history of societal invalidation that has compelled me to look inward and heal patterns of my own judgment and fear of those who choose to hate, particularly, under the guise of religion. I am grateful that I have a depth of compassion that empowers me to understand that these people are immersed in their own human experience, although I find homophobia profoundly irrational. In this human experience it is the identification with ego (fear and hatred) that motivates their behavior to limit the expression of love, simply because it is different.
This Valentine's day whether you are gay, straight, married, or single I encourage you to take an inward journey to experience your true loving essence. By doing this you can begin to trust that love is ever present regardless of your circumstances. Trusting in this internal, eternal loving essence also supports you in knowing that your personal experience and expression of love needs no justification. Some simple ways to get connected with your loving essence are outlined in one of my previous articles, Get Your SELF-Centered for the Holidays. Also, simply stating the intention to "be in love regardless of circumstances," (whether or not you are single, dating, married, divorced, gay, straight) is powerful enough to shift you into dwelling in this essence.
When you allow yourself to dwell in this essence you begin to see others as this essence. It then becomes very clear that loving has less to do with the form our relationships take or the sex of the people we love, and so much more to do with the quality of our loving.
Learn more about Jason and A.C.T.ion Centered Transformation at www.jmannino.com.
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