In the wild, wild West of the World Wide Web and fast-fast-fast dating, it can be hard to know the difference sometimes between what is actual love vs. a temporary hookup. This superficial online world of ultrafast dating sites, for example, often skip the steps of actually getting to know each other, in trade for a temporary sense of relationship and belonging, by texting and never meeting, or by the consummation of sex in lieu of conversation. Sex can become the goal that gives a sense of artificial intimacy without any of the steps of actual intimacy which can leave a woman feeling more alone than ever. Whether we are actively part of this or not, it is in the air, and we are all affected. It's in the zeitgeist of our culture right now -- a kind of relationship junk food.
One of my very first spiritual teachers bellowed at the group of us one evening, "Marry yourselves!"
We all laughed nervously and looked down, hoping to not make eye contact with him, but I'll never forget that moment. What he was saying in two words was a powerful truth. Because really, if we can't love ourselves, who can?
Then, years later, one of my very own students said to me about his love life, "Would I want to be with me?"
What an interesting question.
And the answer, too often, is no, we wouldn't. We want our partner to complete us. We want them to show us who we are, when it is our job, our prerogative, to BE ourselves, ourselves. We need to know that we are worthy. For there is no one else that is you. No one else who can be you, but you.
If we do not feel worthy of love, how can anyone really love us? By this logic, we are saying we are unlovable. So really, how can someone love us?
Basically, what I'm saying here is that when there is no self-love, we won't be able to truly let love in, or even recognize it. It is metaphysical law.
And so, we can get addicted to false love, love that looks like love, but is not. We can get confused by what we think love is, or what love looks like in the magazines, and miss it completely -- when it might be right there!
So, here are the 3 Spiritual Rules for Real Lovability
1. First, love you. Learn to love yourself and be yourself.
2. Second, be open to receive love. Know that you are worthy.
3. Finally, be patient. Learning to love yourself is a practice. It takes time. Trust that real love will come.
Here is the bottom line:
The degree that we can love ourselves is in exact proportion to how much love we can receive from another.
Love is all around us -- all the time. Be open. Have fun with it. Be ready. The love of your life might be right around the corner!
Diana Lang is a spiritual teacher, counselor, and author of
OPENING TO MEDITATION -- www.DianaLang.com
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