Sunday, June 20, 2004

I have just discovered the meaning of life. It is so simple, so obvious, so in your face that we just don't see it.

You want to know what this lesson is that keeps bringing us back life after life? Or that is probably at the core of every religion, even if forgotten or misunderstood?

Get ready for this. We are here to learn how to love.

Now don't shake your head in disbelief. I haven't been smoking my socks or anything else. I told you it was obvious.

The simple truth, is we think we can love. But actually, we don't. We expect something in return, and that is not love. What we tend to call love is Lust, Greed, Pride, Sloth... I'm sure any of the seven deadly sins will fit the bill.

Love is unconditional.

I have always wished I could take the same view of humanity that I take of my cats. They hunt and kill. They are totally selfish and egocentric. They may favour you with some company, a lick, but ultimately you are just part of their property. Do I condemn them for this? No. I feed them and stroke them and tell them what beautiful cats they are.

I've got a long way to go before I can take that view of mankind, believe me.

Yet it's been done.

Let's take an example of the love that is core to Christianity, for example.

John 3: 16. For God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten son...

How did the world respond? Not with love, is the answer. It was a totally unconditional gift to try and bring mankind back on the path to love. And the evil deeds that keep men away from the light are all of those deeds done without love.

I think it was Buddha who so loved the world that he would not enter the gates of heaven until everyone else was in. A bit like the captain getting the passengers onto the lifeboats and making sure they are safe before getting on himself.

So often I have read about parents of handicapped children being so blessed, that God has chosen them. I see this now. You get a blind, deaf, crippled, autistic bundle that needs your total attention, that gives nothing back. And your learn to love that child despite everything. It is a test. It may be a one-on-one test, but it gives you the opportunity to prove you can love at least one other person unconditionally.


I guess once you learn to love mankind like that, you start a whole new journey.

Learning the wisdom to know how to deal with it.