It’s often said that fear is the opposite of love. And I suspect the reason this direct, pithy statement is used so frequently is that it’s helpful: it conveys an immediate and powerful reminder to find some way to move out of fear and into love.
Learning how to move out of fear and into love is an exquisite, courageous and essential thing to learn. We all know that fear prevents us from living radiant and fulfilling lives.
But telling ourselves that fear is the opposite of love isn’t the best way to jumpstart a move in the direction of an authentically fulfilling life, and here’s why:
It isn’t true.
Love has no opposite. Love IS.
Every time we affirm, “Fear is the opposite of love,” we aren’t telling the truth. In fact, we’re subtly reinforcing the very thing that gives rise to fearful circumstances in the first place: the belief that there is a power in opposition to Love – which would have to be a power separate from Love – and that Love can lose.
Love – or God, Source, Life, Creation, the Universe, the Divine – is eternal, infinite and indivisible. It is the only true Power in the Universe. It is the essence and substance of all manifestation, in every form.
I know it doesn’t look that way. It doesn’t look that way because, as powerful creators with free will, whose very thoughts and beliefs shape the world we live in, we have a shared belief in separateness and duality – a belief that we are separate from each other and from God or Love or Creation, and a belief in two fundamental creative powers –good and bad – rather than one.
We can – and tragically, often do – create experiences that reflect back to us our fundamental beliefs in separateness and duality. We unwittingly distort the vastly powerful energy of Love and create unloving outcomes with it. We see ourselves as separate and in competition with everyone else. We judge some things as good and others as bad, and we conclude that there isn’t enough good to go around. We oppose ourselves, both inwardly and outwardly.
And the lived experience of all of that – the greed and corruption and terror and violence – is so intense, so horrific, so gargantuan and so real it seems absurd to think it’s anything but true that love can be opposed and love can lose.
It’s no wonder we are afraid.
That’s why our greatest spiritual teachings have arisen, both ancient and modern: to help us remember the real truth that Love cannot be opposed and Love can never lose. They are here to help us understand how grossly the Creative substance of the Universe can be distorted to appear otherwise, and to remember and reconnect with the Truth of who we are. They remind us that who we are is Love.
Some teachings tell us that anything other than Love isn’t even real – it is an illusion. I understand the essential truth of that statement, yet for me it isn’t always helpful because what we manifest is our current reality. It is neither absolute nor permanent, to be sure – it is relative and impermanent – but referring to our lived experience as an illusion can undercut the importance of shifting that experience.
I believe we’re here to expand our understanding of who we are and to actually create Heaven on Earth. Not as an illusion, but as a lived reality. We’re here to manifest experiences that express and celebrate the Love that we are.
Countless people are awakening now, or awakening anew, to these deeper truths. We are no longer willing to accept gross discord and are making strong stands for peace, abundance and harmony. Many of them – many of us, many of you – are called to work in groups and communities to bring this message to life. I honor you and thank you from the depth of my soul for being of service in such a powerful, much-needed way.
I am called to bring this message to life within people as individuals. I know in my heart and in my bones that unless the full embrace of Love occurs within each of us, any surface changes in circumstances or behavior cannot be sustained. As within, so without. As above, so below.
While it’s easy to see the greed and corruption and terror and violence acted out in the world around us, it isn’t always as easy to see it in action within us. Yet how many of us, out of our own fear of not having enough, have greedily pursued demanding jobs for the primary purpose of earning more money, with almost no regard for our fundamental needs for rest, relaxation, exercise and loving relationships? How many of us have corrupted our innocent desires for creative self-expression with cynical judgments about how absurd those desires are? How many of us have terrorized ourselves with crippling self-doubt? How many of us have violently crushed our dreams with derision and belittlement?
I realize these words are very strong. They may seem overly dramatic. I’m usually not a fan of drama, yet sometimes even I will use dramatic words to wake people up to how serious it is to treat ourselves with such gross disrespect. When we ignore, deride or diminish our precious hopes, ideas, longings, creativity and adventurous spirit, we slam the door on the source and substance of our genuine fulfillment.
And we perpetuate beliefs in both separateness and unworthiness: we separate our dreams from what we think of as “reality,” consciously or unconsciously deeming ourselves unworthy of anything other than making enough money to pay the bills.
It’s interesting to note that most of us would never even remotely consider killing another person, yet many of us think nothing of killing our own dreams. We don’t realize that not only are we violating ourselves, we are encouraging violence within the Whole. The impulse to oppose our own Life force feeds into the matrix of human consciousness, reinforcing opposition to all that would seek to express itself in joyful authenticity.
Whether your true Self wants to express itself through seemingly “big” things such as discovering an unlimited source of clean energy or ensuring that every person on this earth has access to clean water or reinventing our health care system, or seemingly “small” things such as creating new recipes for healthy meals for your family or fostering homeless cats or dressing every day in a way that reveals your immense talent for combining color, texture and proportion, know that nourishing your creative self-expression is a dynamic act of Love that elevates the whole of human consciousness.
In loving ourselves we expand love to each other.
Can you feel the truth of that within you? And whether you can or whether you can’t, do you give yourself time and space to discover your own deeper truths about who you are and what is possible to create?
What if you gave yourself time to reflect on your longings and the source from which they arise? What if you actually listened to that still, small voice within? What if you dropped deeply within yourself to feel your unbreakable union with the Creative Intelligence that gave rise to this entire Universe and everything in it?
What if you stopped believing in a power that could oppose Love?
You would be unstoppable.