Unlike myself, and perhaps many adults, the love of a young child is unconditional. The only reason it needs to love you, is because it does. An infant is so close to the source of its creation, that all it remembers is pure love; this is why we can only see innocence and joy in a baby’s eyes. It hasn’t yet learned the idea of being unworthy of love, like you or I may have. It hasn’t yet forgotten that it IS love – that all of us are love.
I can remember back to this time as a child myself. I can recall looking at my parents through the heart’s lens of pure, unconditional love. When I was getting treated for being a good boy, love. When we played, love. When I was eating, love. Even when I was getting punished, I felt so much love that it hurt to see my actions disconnect my parents from their own love.
I catch glimpses of this on occasion, but that’s not to say I don’t see the world through love – I do. It’s just not nearly as unconditional as love really is. So I rejected it – the unconditional love, that is.
How could I allow love – miracles from the infinite love of the universe – if I wasn’t loving unconditionally as well? I’d like to think I’m much more a loving and positive force in the world than some, but I’m hardly deserving of the purest form of unconditional love… wherever that actually comes from.
That’s the problem: we think we need to deserve this love (okay, at least I did). That somehow, love is not something that can just be had without reason. That abundance, happiness, success, or romantic love cannot – or should not – occur without first earning it. That we must somehow earn the right to be happy, loved, and abundant. I’m not saying that we don’t need to put in the effort, focus, and action – but the idea that we don’t intrinsically have the right to love without doing something, is in fact the thing keeping us from having it.
We can’t deserve what we already are, because we wouldn’t be what we are if we didn’t deserve it – and what we are is love.
We fail to love, to experience love, to allow love in all its forms into our lives because we’re afraid. For me, I was afraid of being loved so unconditionally much (by whatever it is we want to call the source of the purest love humanly fathomable) because I wasn’t worthy of it. I judge people and myself, screw up, act greedy, have bad thoughts, fail at my purposes in life, and struggle with loving others beyond condition – how the hell could I handle being loved so purely when I couldn’t love that way myself?
The shame and guilt was too much to even attempt, so unconsciously I would find a way to discreetly sabotage myself from having it – in order to not feel the pain of inadequacy. The pain of not deserving unconditional love yet still receiving it.
I don’t know the exact source of it – call it Source, the Universe, God, Allah, your higher-self, Vishnu, Mother Nature – but whatever “it” is, it permeates all things with a love that does not discriminate. The only way to not receive this love is to actively reject it. And the only reason we reject it, is because of what we learn. What we (falsely) learn is that love is something we must create or become worthy of, and when we fail to create love in all its forms (happiness, wealth, romance, health, etc.) or lack deservedness, we reject ourselves. When we reject any one or thing outside of ourselves, we reject love – because we must reject a part of ourselves first in order to reject something outside in the world, and loves is what we really are.
As a reminder to myself to love more openly, to accept myself more, to keep my heart open and expanded when I face ridicule, feel compelled to judge others or myself, or feel afraid – I’m posting this picture. I just finished a very emotional therapy session (at 1AM) which exposed, resolved, and inspired the ideas I shared in this post. Yes, that’s me after balling my eyes out after realizing that I felt unworthy of the unconditional love of my little sister as an infant 12 years ago – spanning all the way to up to whatever is most divinely capable of such loving.
Perhaps this part of the post is trivial to you, but the reminder for me that I can love myself even when I look like a crying mess in front of tens of thousand of strangers in the face of ridicule – is all part of the lesson I have unearthed from this bit of introspection. I feel a thousand times better now that I’ve faced it, resolved it, and learned from it – and shared it with you. Being as raw, mushy, and exposed with a very touchy-feely topic such as “divine unconditional love” is not just therapeutic, but a practice in self-acceptance and speaking my current truth.
I can look at myself in this picture and see a deeper love for myself, rather than just a façade. I’m softer, more gentle here than the sexy badass side I tend to show. I can see myself imperfect and at my low, and know that I still deserve to be, give, and to have love. It’s my own selfish symbol that despite whatever I achieve (or fail to achieve), I am still human, and neither greatness or pettiness determines how much love I have earned (or failed to earn). It’s a lesson in compassion.
You are loved perfectly beyond your imperfections. You are worthy of love because you are love, not your flaws.
What’s your experience with unconditional love? Do you feel worthy of it? Let me know in the comments!
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