the history of love:
“… God said: I am made whole by your life. Each soul, each soul completes me …” ~ Hafiz
” … Love is the perfect stillness …” ~ Rabia
“… Love is the cure, for your pain will keep giving birth to more pain until your eyes constantly exhale love as effortlessly as your body yields its scent …” ~ Rumi
Much has been written about love in the annals of history … and, of course, we all have our own experience of love: parent-child, family, romantic, close friends, and more … and given these various “forms” of love, is there something deeper? … that “informs (or is the foundation of)” these various forms of love … so the question might be: what is the genesis of love? … love that is at the heart of these various forms – what might be called “ultimate” love …
Mystical poets like Hafiz, Rabia, and Rumi – above – are all talking about the same thing – this “ultimate love” – each, of course, with their unique expressions …
Those familiar with Rumi know that “… Love is the essence of Rumi, love became his very being, love is the impetus of all his poetry …” … and he offers numerous invitations to “fall into” this “ultimate” love, such as : “Stand with dignity in the magnificent current of my words and they will carry you into God’s arms.”
For yet another perspective, here’s Francis Lucille’s views on such “ultimate” love (or “universal”) love …
Today, we’ll explore a similar expression of this “ultimate” love … by Elias Amidon … a unique perspective that, amongst other things, is tied back to our (humanity’s) genesis … what he calls “the history of love” … with illuminating and fascinating insights … certainly worth pondering …
so here’s Elias’ …
The History of Love
As the story goes, 13.77 billion years ago the universe was born from a “point” of near-infinite temperature and gravity, a point described as a “singularity” appearing before time and space had any meaning. And then, woosh! from this impossible-to-comprehend singularity the entire universe of energy-matter expanded in all directions, which it apparently keeps on doing even now. Yet as it expands there’s another movement — the energy-matter obeys a call of mutual attraction, a drawing together into stars, galaxies, planets, and us wondering about it all.
One of the things we wonder about is the nature of these two “forces” of expansion and attraction — what are they? what moves them? The “woosh” emerging from the singularity — what propels it into becoming? And conversely, this attraction — what causes it? What’s inside the “wish” of isolated particles to come closer, to draw together into stars and planets, you and me? We’ve named that wish “gravity.” Astrophysicist Brian Swimme calls it allurement — a sexy word for something so vast!
The woosh and the wish — let’s play with these words — the woosh is the divine, holy halleluiah! and the wish is its desire for intimacy and connection. The woosh in the Koran is Allah’s universe-creating decree — kun faya kun — Be! and it is! and the wish is Allah’s statement overheard by Mohammed, “I was a hidden treasure and I loved to be known. Hence I created the world so that I would be known.” The woosh in Buddhism is the light-body of the Buddha called the sambhogakaya; the wish is the Buddha-body of everything we see around us, the nirmanakaya. In Christian mysticism the woosh is the flight of the Holy Spirit everywhere, and the wish the incarnation of Christ as the world.
All these metaphors — a singularity, a Big Bang, Be! and it is! Buddha bodies, Holy Spirit, Christ, the love to be known — ultimately they’re all poetry, flinging us into a wordless space where we might glimpse what we’re made of, what calls us, and what guides us.
From this perspective we witness the history of the universe revealing both the forces of unimaginable generosity — the woosh — Here! a universe for you! — and the desire within it — the wish — toward connection, inter-relation, intimacy. Generosity — the gift of becoming; intimacy — the joy of communion.
What can we call this but love?
The history of the universe is the history of love. We can feel how the universe’s love story is alive in our own experience, in the feelings of expansiveness and intimacy that simultaneously appear in our hearts when we love. We might think these are strictly personal feelings, our own good luck, but in fact they’re the life of the whole universe as it comes into being. As above, so below. As everywhere, so here.
I realize this vision of a universe made of love may seem like wishful thinking, especially as we witness in our time so much selfishness and injustice, and so much of the beauty and life of our planet being destroyed.
But it is not a wishful vision. It’s evident in the history of the universe, in its boundless generosity and its desire for communion. We’re made of it. We’re made of its generous and intimate love. Knowing this is true, not just intellectually but in our bones, in how we experience our becoming moment by moment, can give us the courage to carry on, no matter what happens. The force — of the entire universe! — is with us.
~ Elias Amidon
As the COVID vaccine roll out continues throughout the world, heroic efforts continue to be underway by many to ensure our health and safety … helping those who are involved in such efforts remains the “order of the day” … and in this spirit, Go Fund Me needs to be commended for organizing various campaigns targeted towards COVID-19 relief efforts. All of these campaigns are worthy of our attention … but for now we wanted to highlight TWO critical ones that we have donated personally and also as Stillness Speaks:
Despite the financial challenges that are amongst us all, if your situation allows you to donate and help then …
… please visit Frontline Responders Fund’s Go Fund Me page … and help deliver crucial supplies to these frontline responders …
… and/or visit America’s Food Fund Go Fund Me page and help feed the neighbors in need.
And, we again, express our deepest gratitude to a) the COVID-19 Frontline Responders (all the healthcare professionals – doctors, nurses, hospital/medical-services staff – firefighters, law enforcement, volunteers, and any/all the people involved in keeping the “system-at-large” functioning for ALL of us) … and b) Go Fund Me for organizing America’s Food Fund to feed the needy.
Elias’ writes a monthly Notes from the Open Path which are short contemplations on an approach to living wholeheartedly and in clear awareness (aspects of his Open Path teachings) …
The entire italicized text above (aside from the block quoted non-italicized content) is authored by Elias and is from his October 2020 monthly email Notes from the Open Path. He has graciously given us permission to freely share these notes with our readers.