“…you are filled with love when you love, rather than when you are loved.” ~ Nirmala
In Living from the Heart, Nirmala provides a beautiful and instructive exploration about how to live an authentic, heart centered life. Read this overview (third in a series of three) and download a FREE PDF copy of Living from the Heart courtesy of Free Spiritual Ebooks … and it is also available from Nirmala’s website.
If you missed it, read our Overview of the first and second sections, How to Live from the Heart and Following The Heart’s Wisdom. This concluding section Love is for Giving, Not for Getting brings living from the heart to its natural fulfillment. All quoted material from Nirmala’s book is in italics.
Nirmala opens this final section of his book with a series of questions….
“What is love and where is it found? We search for love and try to get love, and yet it seems like we never get enough. Even when we’ve found it, it can slip away as time passes. What if there is a source of love that never fades and is always available? What if love is as near and easy as breathing? What if you have been “looking for love in all the wrong places” instead of actually lacking love?”
Love is for Giving, Not for Getting responds to these questions. A few nuggets are presented below…
“Love is both simpler and more mysterious and subtle than we imagine it to be. Love is simply the spacious, open attention of our awareness, which is the gentlest, kindest, and most intimate force in the world. It touches things without impinging on them. It holds all of our experience but doesn’t hold it down or hold it back. And yet, inherent in awareness is a pull to connect and even merge with the object of your awareness.”
Paradoxically, unfolding awareness is where our sense separation begins. Awareness allows us to “pull out” from the intrinsic oneness of being and make distinctions between “that which is aware and the object of awareness. And yet, those two are connected by this mysterious force we are calling awareness, or love.”
“This flow of awareness and love that connects you to all you experience is the true source of satisfaction and joy… Whenever you fall in love with a person, pet, piece of music, beautiful object, or anything else, you have felt this flow of intimate, connected awareness. Unfortunately, we’ve been taught to believe that the source of this good feeling was the object of our affection. So we suffered whenever we lost our apparent source. When your lover leaves, your beloved pet dies, the concert ends, or your dream home is repossessed, you feel bereft of that loving, connected feeling.”
The objects of our affection are not the source of love…. this understanding is key to Nirmala’s teachings and offers a path to freedom. The love you have been seeking has always been right inside your own Heart. The good news is, you are the source!
“The sweetness of love is in the flow of awareness itself. The completely allowing openness and freedom you might look for from a perfect lover is already here in your own awareness. It doesn’t have to try to be accepting because awareness is, by nature, open and allowing.”
What about the times when you are feeling poorly, lonely, tired,or ill… days when you are simply not feeling the flow of loving awareness? How can there be love when you feel cut off and alienated? Is the love actually cut off? Has awareness disappeared in these uncomfortable experiences?
“Even when awareness is contracted and tight, as it often is when you are lonely, angry, sad, hurt, or afraid, it has the same nature as when you are happy and excited. Even a single drop of water is still wet, and even a single drop of awareness is still open and allowing of whatever it is touching.”
“The only trick to experiencing the open and allowing nature of awareness is to look for it in the actual experience you are having. When your awareness is contracted by judgment or fear, it’s not actually touching the object of your judgment or fear. Instead, it is touching the judgmental or fearful thought you are having.”
“The key to experiencing love is to notice where awareness is flowing right now. That flow of awareness is love, and it’s the most satisfying and nourishing thing you can experience.”
Loving awareness is embodied and flowing within each person. Although this flowing and loving awareness seems shared, it is not found within the love object. It’s within you.
“…when two people are falling in love, they are both feeling the fullness and richness of the free flow of awareness, or love. But the contact each of them has with that love is within themselves. It’s their own love and awareness that is filling them up so richly. This truth—that you are filled with love when you love, rather than when you are loved—can free you from the search for love outside yourself.”
Nirmala provides numerous useful and simple practices for cultivating loving awareness. A short excerpt follows…
“Allow your awareness to settle on a physical object nearby. Take an extra moment to allow your awareness to fully touch the object. Just for the sake of this experiment, give as much love, appreciation, and acceptance as you can to that object. Then notice another object. As your awareness rests for a moment on that, give it as much love, appreciation, and acceptance as you can.”
Download the free PDF, Living from the Heart, to find more awareness practices and to read much more about loving through the senses, seeing beauty, experiencing the limitlessness of love, and embodying oneness of Being…
“There is just one awareness and one Being behind all the individual awarenesses. The way you can reach that oneness of Being is by experiencing the flow of love from within your being.”
Nirmala’s teachings on love reveal a gentle path into heart centered awareness an interconnected Being.
Nirmala’s Stillness Speaks Teacher Page will be coming soon...a brief excerpt from his website bio is offered here:After a lifetime of spiritual seeking, Nirmala met his teacher, Neelam, a devotee of H.W.L. Poonja (Papaji). She convinced him that seeking wasn’t necessary; and after experiencing a profound spiritual awakening in India, he began offering satsang and Nondual Spiritual Mentoring with Neelam’s blessing. This tradition of spiritual wisdom has been most profoundly disseminated by Ramana Maharshi, a revered Indian saint, who was Papaji’s teacher.