LOVE is the great substrate of the universe, the stuff that remains when all the acquired hogwash is removed. At least that’s part of the definition we came up with during my residential Heartline program at the Monroe Institute in Virginia. Nestled there in the Blue Ridge Mountains, we explored “new approaches for removing the obstacles to love’s expression in our daily lives, as well as methods for exploring deeper levels of Self; for discovering one’s true self-essence.” That’s a tall order, but hey, you have to start somewhere, right?
In a multifarious display of the human condition, 14 participants and 2 trainers came together operating from wildly different heart-quarters—some groping around for a crowbar to open that stuck-shut love-organ, some radiating heart-heat like a slow-cook oven, and still others bubbling forth as human love-geysers. And yet, by week’s end, we were transformed into a cohesive, loving family unit. Presumably, each person got whatever they needed for this stop on the personal evolution hayride.
Each day was chock full of heart-expanding opportunities: discussions, guest speakers, kindergarten art plus musical and theatrical projects. Mainly, though, we did meditation exercises alone in the comfort of our rooms. Enhanced with powerful proprietary hemi-sync (binaural) audio signals, they’re designed to transport you to other levels of consciousness where it’s easier to grab an expanded point-of-view. “Focus 18”—the rose-pink place of unconditional love—was a hotspot for us, and we spent a lot of quality time with our “inner self-helpers,” clearing chakras and mind-clutter and whatnot.
“We must be willing to let go of the blocks, the energetic shields we hold in order to protect ourselves and our hearts from perceived threats, old and new,” assured the program materials.
The first night, I dreamt I was searching the racks of a flea market for a cheerleading costume, but the place suddenly shut down before I could make my purchase. Amused and slightly puzzled upon emerging into the so-called wakeful state, I journaled it and moved on.
As the days transpired, I observed the phenomenon of people in like vibrational states flocking together and comforting one another, sometimes through bouts of public drama. It was kind of like an emotional Montessori for grown-ups. I have to admit, my buttons were pushed when the narcissistic behavior of one or two individuals dominated our group discussions.
Reluctantly at first, I gave of myself to those individuals—via heart energy and charitable thoughts, and later, in the form of energy healing assistance—despite the judgmentality still lurking within me. It was amazing to bear witness to my own progress. I began to see their predicaments anew with heart-vision. I went from wanting to run far away to championing the cause. I figured, hell, if I can love a hardcore narcissist, I can love anyone.
Speaking of narcissism, they say the whole world is a giant mirror. So in that spirit, I had to take a closer look at the nature of those buttons being pushed. In reality, everything and everyone is “selfishly oriented”; narcissists merely take this to another level. I suppose they were showing me something about myself that I don’t prefer. But mainly I realized that my objections stemmed from Love itself (everything does because that’s all there really is). I see great potential in people and often wish more for them than they’re currently allowing.
“Excessive self-love” is a common dictionary definition of narcissism, but it appears to be precisely the opposite: these wounded children are endlessly seeking to fill, from the outside, a love-void within. I had to further cultivate the Art of Allowing in accepting their drama rather than Resisting it, and refraining from criticizing or offering unsolicited advice—all the while sending love vibes their way.
“That sounds a lot like parenting,” said my observant new friend in the airport afterward. Having chosen not to breed in this lifetime, I tend to sublimate my “motherly” energy and distribute it to various adults I encounter.
That dream I had suddenly made sense. Playing the cheerleader for others is pretty routine for me, but for this special week, I was to forgo that role and shelf the costume. Sometimes the best way to love another is to simply allow them to experience whatever they are experiencing—without trying to fix anything.