Put away all hindrances,
let your mind full of love pervade . . .
the whole wide world,
above, below, around and everywhere,
altogether continue to pervade with love-filled thought,
abounding, sublime, beyond measure.
I've done Big Mind with Genpo Roshi twice, now. About much more than Big Mind, it's "Big Mind, Big Heart".....and I'm starting to think in terms of "Big Love, Big Heart, Big Life, Big Everything."
In my last post, I wrote about Open Heart and offered a way for people to actually create that opening in themselves. A new friend, Micki, reminded me last night after our SeattleIntegral/Ken Wilber Meetup, that my posting sounding a lot like Tonglen, the Buddhist meditative practice of compassion....funny...one of the first practices I learned, and I didn't make that connection.
Roger Walsh, author of Essential Spirituality, also offers a way to open one's heart to an all-encompassing love that pervades everything and everyone in the simple meditation contained within this wonderful article.
Aside from these practices (or possibly because of these practices), I'm beginning to develop an awareness of my ability to hold multiple loves in my personal life, both in and outside of the contexts of romantic love. This is still unfolding for me, but it feels like what I'm starting to think of as "Big Love."
Big Love is the ability to love all persons, and the ability to love more than one person. Polyamory, a term meaning "more than one love," doesn't quite seem to fill the bill, here, and seems to come with lot of baggage. If we're truly learning how to open our hearts fully (how possible is this?), what does that mean in the context of relationship? Does it include our sexuality, as well? What happens at later stage development that allows this "letting in and letting go" that encompasses this concept of Big Love, part of which is about more than one partner?
It seems essential that everyone within this context be pretty much at the same level of development, actually embody this "all encompassing love" awareness, and transcended above the shadow elements (jealousy, anger, fear, to name just a few) that can play havoc with relationship.
I am not suggesting everyone at later stages of development should, or could, take this on as their path, including myself. But I am suggesting we should not dismiss it out of hand for whatever reason, including culture and our own fear. I am coming to believe that anything that stretches us or makes us uncomfortable is our practice.
What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite. -- Bertrand Russell
Quoting David Deida: "To become truly intimate, we must come to terms with our deepest desires to give and receive our sexual, emotional, and spiritual gifts. We may find that we are hiding some of our real desires, thinking they are unfair or taboo. Before we can learn to give and receive our deepest gifts, whether gently or wildly, we must understand why we often confine our loving, and how we can liberate the mysterious force of love which lies yearning in our hearts."
I'm working on giving up my fear of giving and receiving, and my reluctance to fully express my own desires and gifts - sexual, emotional, and spiritual desires - in intimacy. One more surrender to the total openness of who I can be, releasing me from the trap of my head.