​​​​​Learning How to Love~

There can be a difference between being alone and being lonely.  You can choose to be alone and in the solitude of your own inner being. Loneliness in its raw form can feel downright---lonely!  So, how do you take the first step to deal with loneliness? By learning to love yourself first, then learning to love others. But, first we must examine the paradox to love.
When you are lonely, you feel like you are in an unbearable prison. By its very nature,  loneliness is just like a stomach ache – the attention centers only on yourself. So you try and fill this emptiness by finding others who will give you that very love you need.
People often try to do things for others to gain their love & approval. They barter or trade favors with others thinking that they are loving people. We feel that the loneliness can only be filled by the love of others and therefore we must feel loved by others.

The Paradox of Love is This:

If we seek to fill the void of our own loneliness in seeking love from others, we will inevitably find no consolation but only a deeper desolation. In other words, if we seek the love that we need from others, we most likely will never find it.
When a person orients his life towards  a purely selfish satisfaction of his own needs, when he goes out to seek the love which he needs, he is basically self-centered. As long as he focuses soley upon himself, his ability to love will always remain stunted.

What Is the Solution then?

If a person seeks not to receive love, but coming from an inner place of true self (not selfish) love  rather gives it, without strings attached, he will become lovable and he will most certainly be loved by others in the end. We must stop being so concerned with ourselves and begin to be concerned with others.
Beginning with the end in mind –  focuses the results of the act of loving others without concern for self-gain . This is the first step towards gaining love and easing the pain of loneliness. Every single person on earth has some capacity to love and every person deisre love. We all have some ability to focus the attention off ourselves to the needs and concern of others. It is to the extent that we are willing to give, that we are we able to receive that amount of love from others.
Deciding to love others with no strings attached is like a donation (we don’t expect anything in return, not even a satisfied ego or relieved guilt, not a barter or trade). We learn to give, letting go of the outcome.
When we ask others, “What have you done for me?” we have failed to love.
Even if at the beginning you are only able to love little, you will be loved a little. That very love will empower you to grow and produce more love and in return receive greater love from others.
But always remember that in making this self-donation or self-sacrifice, our minds must be focused away from ourselves or it will not work.








   With Lauren