I have really enjoyed the recent flurry of activity I experienced here as we thought together about the word power, and all the tendrils wrapped inside of it, and sundry connected things. I will be away for about a week and think I may not have access to Internet service without going to some extreme lengths. In thinking about all of the feedback I’ve received, and what to leave this site with for the week, I was reminded of the passage quoted below from the book Return of the Bird Tribes that I read close to twenty years ago. This scene smacked me upside the heart when I first read it, and I’ve never forgotten it. I think it is a beautiful description of authentic power:
I remember the day when I walked across the open prairie with my head held high and my feathers blowing in the wind. The soldiers saw only my silhouette against the sky. I walked slowly toward them, arms extended from my side, palms facing them in a gesture of peace. I watched the waves of love emanate forth from my hands, as powerful as the love I first expressed before and after Golgotha.
The soldiers shot me dead.
I knew they would.
But their children have been brought up on my teachings, have loved my spirit and have understood enough of my creative principles to sail to the moon. Could I have taught them another way, when their bullets flew and my feathers blew in the breeze that day? Could I have spoken more plainly than through the example of my deeds?
I have died a million deaths and lived as many lives to teach the warrior tribes what they would not learn in any other way. In the end, I am the victor, because the warrior tribes are changing, fundamentally, while I am rising again and again, leading them and their kind ever onward toward their destiny among the midnight stars.
And here is an old post that dates back to March, but has a winter theme. Everything moves in circles. This post precedes the arrival of many who have shared with me here of light, so I hope you enjoy…
What happens to the Hitlers of the world when we look at them with eyes full of love?
Victor Frankl with “Man’s Search For Meaning” gave one of the first powerful glimpses I got at contemplating the reality that would (and is!) being created when those that are that lost in their behavior are met with love first. Love takes us past the polarity of right and wrong to just being at peace with what is. And when we are at peace (not as the world giveth… but true peace) then
a kind word turns away wrath. This is a highly misunderstood Christian teaching in my opinion. It LITERALLY does when it is spoken from a place of love. That is true power. WE are that powerful (when we remember and get past having purposefully been taught to fear our true natures).
Love is not just a power. It is THE power. http://seeingm.wordpress.com/2013/01/31/love-the-exception-2/
LOVE LOVE LOVE these return of birds of paradise 🙂 words shared here and am looking forward to diving deeper into that book.
I liked these lines from your post: “Love is a way of being NOT a way of feeling.” I think that corrects a common misunderstanding, that if we are being love somehow we’d always and in every moment “feel” a certain way. We’ve all been angry, hurt, saddened, abandoned, whatever- and yet Love never stopped being us… We never stopped being Love…
Your post touched on another topic I was reading about this past week- that power of relationship. Without that relationship, Love just is. It can’t get up and dance to that video without relationship… So, this topic of power somehow has to include this creative relationship, this creative expression, this creative differentiation of Love (which is pure and without attributes) into Love Beings who take on attributes in order to differentiate themselves into extensions of one Whole Love, so they can express what is…
Yes, I do recall a wrathful moment referred to with money changers and Jesus. Wrath from a place of love?! You better believe it. It is the intent behind the emotion that gives the true meaning to the feeling. All done from a place of intention from unconditional love is how our world is created (VERY simplistic statement, but starts to get at the root of what I sense is going on at the code levels… peek behind the curtain and the wizard is unconditional love as a creational POWER).
As for relationship, YES! Mirror, mirror on the wall… it is in the power of the one mirroring itself (ourselves) in every aspect of it’s creation. There is not one thing that we see or interact with that is not there as a teacher and mirror for us to remember what we be and for me, that is unconditional love.
We’re back to the quote I think I included in one of these posts in which Jesus describes (in A Course of Love) as the power to differentiate- the power to be a unique expression of Love. I found this quote also related to the mirroring you describe, “You are here to make one another known, and in so doing to know oneness.” There is another one later that is related that I like a lot, too, “All the truth and all the wisdom that is available but unknown to you, takes you to make it known. And if this is the only way that the beauty, truth, and wisdom of the One Self can be made known, then you are the source and the power of coming to know and making known.”
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Forgive the long quotes from Frankl; Ms. M got me looking through my teaching materials for when we try to decide as a class, after reading excerpts from “Night” and “Man’s Search For Meaning”, (can’t seem to underline) what makes life worth living when you are stripped of everything you think is meaningful. To me this is an expression of the ultimate powerlessness, this stripping, and to be able to find meaning from there is where one finds the truth of existing. In the exploration of power, the flip of powerlessness then comes to illustrate true power – which to me is so beautifully paradoxical. These particular passages seem to illustrate the power we have as humans in the face of those who think they can strip another of meaning – they cannot. LOVE trumps and triumphs. – my words pale so I will quiet to the words of Dr. Frankl,
“A thought transfixed me: for the first time in my life I saw the truth as it is set into song by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers. The truth — that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire. Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love. I understood how a man who has nothing left in this world still may know bliss, be it only for a brief moment, in the contemplation of his beloved. In a position of utter desolation, when man cannot express himself in positive action, when his only achievement may consist in enduring his sufferings in the right way — an honorable way — in such a position man can, through loving contemplation of the image he carries of his beloved, achieve fulfillment. For the first time in my life I was able to understand the meaning of the words, ‘The angels are lost in perpetual contemplation of an infinite glory.'”
“The way in which a man accepts his fate and all the suffering it entails, the way in which he takes up his cross, gives him ample opportunity — even under the most difficult circumstances — to add a deeper meaning to his life. It may remain brave, dignified and unselfish. Or in the bitter fight for self-preservation he may forget his human dignity and become no more than an animal. Here lies the chance for a man either to make use of or to forgo the opportunities of attaining the moral values that a difficult situation may afford him. And this decides whether he is worthy of his sufferings or not.”
Thank you for inspiring dialogue that has me digging yet again. I hope your time away is full of many wonderful experiences!
Those are powerful quotes and humbling portrayals of power: to be Meaning itself when all else has been stripped away is pretty awesome. I love that paradox you have highlighted. There is something powerful and profound about it: to be able to possess Meaning itself is a really beautiful notion on it’s own even. Sometimes I think we hunger for these moments of “finding out what we’re made of”, for the last play of the game with no time on the clock, for the drama that provides the circumstances to which we can respond, thereby defining and discovering who we are. These sentences I just wrote remind me of what Jesus calls the temptations of the human experience, the temptation to forget who we are and push for really ecstatic or profoundly difficult situations that will pry it loose and make it plain to us once again, those experiences of having one’s heart “cracked open”.
It strikes me that Frankl’s discussion reaches deeper, to a place of discovering Love is there regardless of what happens, regardless of how low or dim the light gets, it’s there, holding everything and providing the opportunity for it to be. What do we do with this realization? I think that we are finding our way to carry this profound understanding of Love into ordinary Life, so we can experience it without the ephemeral highs/lows. We are finding our way to carrying it into every simple moment into which we step, and in doing so, we give it the most profound life possible. Is that the other bookend to the paradox? That we carry Love as deep as the deepest sea into the simplest of encounters? Is that the other end of Frankl’s experience?
THANK YOU for the link you give to your old post in March. The wording is breath-taking-ly beautiful…so much to savour. I like the passage from Return of The Bird Tribes. I never heard of it so I will look it up on Amazon. I always love book recommendations 🙂
Thank YOU! I hope you enjoy it. Wishing you peace and joy this day.
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I love the image of the waves of love emanating forth from his hands, thank you.
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Me, too, Julia. It has always been a powerful image for me, since the first time I read it.
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