Originally published in mindbodygreen.com HERE
By David Arenson
How much love you feel for another says everything about the love you are able to give to yourself. We can only see the qualities in others that exist within us. Other people are merely yourself reflected..
All of life is reflected like a mirror. All we can do is to love ourselves, and through loving ourselves, love the experience of others.
This all boils down to one immeasurable fact – the relationship you have with yourself is the most important relationship you have.
In loving yourself, you are able to bring those qualities to your relationship with another. In a romantic context, this means the intensity of the feeling of bonding can expand in a healthy way. Yet love and bonding has a shadow side beyond the romantic hyperbole.
Love’s shadow can include a sense of entitlement. “I love you” can become “I own you.”
Through a variety of influences from society, media and family, we engage with others using the love languages we have developed. These love languages etched in symbology are rich in meaning about how we think about ourselves. For instance a nagging appeal to love – “you know I love you” – can feel empty because it lacks the substance of a substantial relationship with God / Source.
How do you use the term “I love you?”
Below are the 10 shadow languages of love:
I love you = I love your money.
I love you = I love how you make me feel.
I love you = I love having sex with you.
I love you = I love how you make me forget everything (escape).
I love you = I love having power over you (because it makes me feel more powerful).
I love you = I love controlling you (the more I can control you, the more in control I will feel).
I love you = I love your good looks/your great body because you make me look good.
I love you = I love the feeling of safety I get with you.
I love you = I love dominating you.
I love you = I need you (I feel weak without you. What would I do if you were gone?).
Authentic love is wholesome and is a creation from God / Source that is embedded in our love of ourselves. Most of our troubles come from disconnection from Source energy, and the inherent fragmentation from our self that results. Love as an essence is pure and without need. Love is whole and complete.
In order to experience these feelings of pure love, of being in love (our cells dancing in blissful contentment), we must first love who we are. I call this basking in our magnificence. We can then bring these authentic feelings into relationship with another. Sharing this love actually magnifies it.
The 3 Questions to ask yourself about love:
Do you love receiving all of Heaven’s gifts?
Do you feel deserving of love?
Do you place a cap on the amount of love you receive?
How would your life look if you were truly in love with yourself?