Monday, April 27, 2009

The Two Sides of Love: Are You Ready?

Anyone who truly wants to experience love has to be ready to delve into ALL of love, the two sides of love.The one side you dream and fantasize about that is readily described in romantic novels, as well as the side that rarely gets mentioned, the side that encompasses unconditional love.

So what is love? Like anything in life, love is composed of it's opposites, to be what it is. Love, a feeling, an emotion, is probably the most written about topic of all times. Love, to many, is the feeling of God. The feeling of the Divine. The feeling that says "all is perfect, all is beautiful, all is well."If everything in life must have it's opposite to make it complete, to make it known, then love is also vulnerability, insecurity, and jealousy, for without these aspects of love, the feelings of being "perfect, beautiful, Divine and well", could not be felt.Identical to the thought that if we never had night, we could not experience day, if we never knew insecurity we'd never experience the security that love can offer. They must go hand in hand.

In my practice, I often share with clients that if they truly want to experience the deepest of love than they must be willing to also experience the deepest pain, loss, vulnerability and hurt that this quest for love may offer.Many of these emotions, the "other" side of love, can surface if we delve into the concept of unconditional love. Unconditional love is the other part of love that most of us give lip service to, but never really have the intention of practicing. To love someone unconditionally means exactly what it says, without conditions. I love you even if "you don't do as I ask,don't make the money I'd like you to make, don't have the body I want you to have, or don't communicate with me the way I want you to communicate". In other words, I will love you at the deepest level regardless of what you do or do not do.

When we start to love someone at this level, we can be assured that for a while, it will scare the heck out of us. We release our ego through the practice of unconditional love and move to a place of pure acceptance. We toss out the fantasy of having a partner that falls into a certain role, and accept the human side of their existence. This is where we often experience the dark side of our own emotions, fears and insecurities as we allow our partner the space to become their own person without limits or expectations. Again, the fantasy that we have created since childhood gets blasted away, and in it's place we become strong enough, and loving enough, to allow them to live the life they desire.Within this union, real love can exist. Within this type of relationship, we experience the deepest love for ourselves as we allow our partner more space to grow than they ever could have imagined.

When someone feels this type of love coming from you, the will often respond with the same depth in return. The kind of depth that will awaken a new sense of ecstasy within you that may just blow the doors off of anything you could have imagined.The best way that I have seen this happen is when two people come together and make a conscious decision to discuss this path of unconditional love as a goal that they would like to share. They can then regularly talk honestly about how they are each doing, in a non confrontational and supportive way. While it can also occur without consciousness, the chances of it lasting at this level becomes more of a challenge.

So, now the question lies with you. What do you want when it comes to love? Are you ready to experience the two sides of love in order to reach the zenith of Divine Union or unconditional love? Or, do you want to continue to hold onto the "fantasy love, fantasy partner" that our society continues to promote as realistic to obtain even though we know it is not?I'd love for you to make a conscious decision today, and then be willing to live with your notion of love. On the one hand is the superficial love filled with shallowness and disappointment from a lover that could never rise to your expectations. Or on the other, is a lover that feels free as a bird, and offers the same freedom in return as you both fly into uncharted territories. A love relationship that offers a connection unknown to most, carried by a current of vulnerability that will stretch you beyond your own wildest dreams. A love that guarantees a soul connection so deep when you make love, one that you could never have created in all of your dreams, even if all you had was time to dream. The two sides of love. The option is yours.

Whatever you desire, so it shall be.

Slow down.Love, peace, Rev. David Essel
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Wednesday, April 22, 2009


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Sunday, April 12, 2009

My visit to the Catholic Church

So much has changed over the years when it comes to most of the major Christian churches, and that was evident during my recent work with a Catholic church in Syracuse N.Y.

My former elementary school, St Rose of Lima, combined with another local school St Margaret's, invited me to be the guest speaker at their annual workshop on Faith and Spirituality.

It was quite an honor to be asked, as it had been a number of years since I had been there, and to bring in a speaker who just happens to be an All Faith Minister, was a beautiful sign at how the church has continued evolving.

What really blew my mind though was when they asked if I would do the sermon at the mass following my workshop! At first I was sure I was misreading the email!!

My sister, Marydiane Scheemaker, was the go between, as she's a teacher at St Rose. When she assured me that this was the case, that I would be doing the sermon based on a reading from the Gospel according to Mark, I was elated!

The nuns and teachers there, all 50 of them, including one of the priests from St Margaret's who was just an amazing man, were such a joy to work with, and overly supportive of my day with them.

Oftentimes, we pay too much attention to the media hype when it comes to all that is wrong with our religions these days, or from caustic comments from disgruntled congregants.

Or, worse yet, we only remember from our childhood what we DID NOT like about our religious upbringing, instead of what was beautiful about it.

I thank both of these churches for their open arms, and how they are changing with the times, without losing their beauty.

In our church, the Church of Spiritual Light, we relish the chance to honor many rituals from the Catholic church, the church I was raised in, as well as many other religious and spiritual rituals from a variety of faiths.

And do you know what?

They are ALL beautiful, ALL from God.

Love, Rev. David Essel

Monday, April 6, 2009

A True Story of Leadership & Community

Friday, April 3, 2009

Human Emotions - What the Heck Do We Know?