Monday, January 29, 2007

Love: The Source of All Violence

Intrigued? I had a wonderful discussion group last week during which we discussed anger and its derivatives. One participant said she had been pondering the source of all violence. She, herself, had experienced a considerable amount of anger in the past year and she was wondering if there was a connection between the source her anger and the source of all other types of anger, from a simple irritation to the wars between nations.

Many ideas came out of the discussion. One person thought about attachment. Much of our violence stems from an attachment we have to land, material goods, and, even more so, to our ideas and beliefs. We hold strong and feel threatened when another has another idea.

Another participant considered a lack of self-love as a source of anger. If we can’t love ourselves, we cannot love and respect another. And, remember, judgment is not love. When we are judging ourselves or another, we are not in a loving space.

Still others considered hopelessness and helplessness as a source.

Then I came across this quote from Donna Farhi that seemed to encompass everything we were saying:

“[What we need to restrain is] ...our inherent tendency to see ourselves as separate. It is this inherent tendency that causes us to act outside our true nature. When there is an 'other,' it becomes possible to do things such as stealing because we falsely believe that what happens to another is not our concern. But when there is a sense of unity, who is there to steal from but ourselves? When we feel connected to others, we find that we are naturally compassionate, [and] 'non-harming' is not something we strive to be but something that we are. We see the essence of ourselves in the other and realize that the tenderness and forgiveness we so wish to have extended toward us is something that all humans long for." (-Donna Farhi)

We definitely feel negative from attachment or a lack of self-love or helplessness and hopelessness, but a feeling of oneness underlies those issues. If you feel the unity of all you act in your true nature. Your true nature is full of self-love and completely unattached to things and ideas. Your true nature never feels hopeless or helpless because it knows you are neither hopeless or helpless.

Strive to connect with others and notice the compassion flourish in your heart.