“No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”
From a recent post on LinkedIn, I shared the following quote which is an excerpt from a speech by Barack Obama for Nelson Mandela’s Centenary celebrations in South Africa.
“Love comes forth naturally to the human heart.”
The expressions that emerged from the post were appreciative. However, one of the readers found the quote and in particular ‘love’ an elusive topic. The following was shared by the reader:
“Love, I find is a very elusive topic …what is love experience to one may turn out to be a horrible experience for another. So love appears to be a personal experience with no standard definition…..The thought is mind boggling. Help!”
This narrative, I am sharing to illuminate what love is love from the lens of my appreciation of our humanity. The societal constructs and misalignment of love over time have left us in wonderment and love-lust. (The latter being the search for or impulse or to look for love outside of self). The world we live in demystifies love, making it esoteric and we go in search of what that has always been us and with us. I believe given that we are all in it, and you and I are love. Not in the societal construct of love, but in its spiritual essence and endearments of gratitude and beauty.
Love and everything that emerges from our being ought to be our innate and natural expressions. The following situates my appreciation of love and its significance. I recall a conversation I had years ago with Michael Bolton, and I asked him this question: “Michael why do you always sing about love?” He responded poignantly, “..what is it that we all want to give and receive…love.” In the beauty and wisdom with which he responded, it profoundly heightened my awareness of self and others. It was seminal, the impact it had on my life, living and lifestyle. Henceforth, mindfulness that characterize my purpose, passion and being a biophile lends itself to the following quote as a gentle reminder; and my guide for living:
“People are meant to be loved. Things are meant to be used. Start loving people and stop using them. Start using things and stop loving them. Things can be replaced, but a life is priceless.”
Love is the expression and devotion to care, value and respect self and others. Manifesting the beauty, truth, honesty, mercy, power and faith in your steadfastness in being our best self (human being, not just human) and appreciating our humanity (nature and nurture). Love is our common currency, it is who we are.
“We cannot pray in love and live in hate and still think or believe we are worshipping the Creator of all things.”
Love is our spiritual power; it is the essence of the human spirit and the energy of our heart. It is the indispensable expression of humility, selfessness and kindness. Love arises from the appreciation of who you are, not what you are. Love is the belief in our greater self. Love is our genome, to vibrate and radiate light and beauty faithfully and fearlessly. Love is the wellspring of goodness, compassion and empathy.
”Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn.”
Love requires of us dedication, effort, duty, knowledge, understanding and wisdom of our best self. Through the highest expression of self, love abounds more. Love is our existential reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life. I share with the framing of love from a faith-based context, with the following quote:
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.”
I Corinthians 13:4-8, NKJV
The societal connotations and constructs with which we coexist, robs from us, when we do not know who we are – love. The social constructs of what love is versus spiritual wiring, ought to be and is a fundamental issue for our times. The vibrancy of love is a life lived in service of others, not exploiting others. Our cultures in Western democracies, deceptively helps to shape a construct of perceived love versus spiritual love; what we ought to be versus who we are respectively, not just today, but always.
We are healers and doers, designed to do great and abundant things. Love emboldens and fuels the best in us and for those around us. It helps to create inventions that are necessitated to do well for our humanity (ceteris paribus), not evil for destruction of our humanity. Love is a living and breathing energy of empathy. It is an elixir that heals; and it listens without assumption and judgment. It makes no record of what is wrong or right. But fosters an awareness of the beauty within self, others and around us. Love holds us together, even in the midst of difficulty and reminds us of whom we are. Love is the enduring power of your soul’s energy, a force of good and the fullest expression of your being (spirit). Love is not fleeting or temporal. Love is an enduring expression of good naturedness.
“Love is the beauty of the soul.”
Love is us, not just some of us, it is all of us. We are spiritually wired and designed to be love. It is the innate essence of our being and the fuel in our loins. Love is a responsibility that we need to be consciously aware of; connect with it, express and experience it with self and others. Love is what gives life meaning and appreciation of all things bright and beautiful.
Hugh Anthony is a storyteller, lifestyle coach and keynote speaker who is also a client-focused executive and creative savant with excellent communication skills. He brings progressive engagements in leading, managing, facilitating, curating strategies and initiatives that embolden outcomes and enhance operational efficiencies. Hugh Anthony is the Cofounder and Associate Consulting Director, Lifestyle and Strategy of ConsulateMilieu®, a boutique lifestyle firm in Toronto, Canada that specializes in creative, avid and exciting art-based and lifestyle projects for its diverse clientele. Hugh helps individuals uncover their passion, unfold their purpose and share the power of their story. This he does through a process of co-creation that melds recreational, creative and professional endeavours to optimize and enrich lifestyle outcomes.
For career, press inquiries, speaking and advisory opportunities contact Hugh Anthony at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter @huanthoni