Think of a person you find it difficult to love. Perhaps they’ve hurt you. Perhaps they irritate your sensitivities or sensibilities. Do we “owe” that person love? And if we do, what is required of us? Consider the words of Joseph Goldstein,
The Sanskrit word maitri and the Pali word metta both mean “lovingkindness” or “loving care,” and refer to an attitude of friendliness, goodwill, and generosity of heart. When we are filled with lovingkindness, we have a very simple wish: May all beings be happy. This kind of love has many qualities that distinguish it from our more usual experiences of love mixed with desire or attachment. Born of great generosity, metta is a caring and kindness that does not seek self-benefit. It does not look for anything in return: “I will love you if you love me,” or “I will love you if you behave a certain way.” Because lovingkindness is never associated with anything harmful, it always arises from a purity of heart.
From, Triumph of the Heart. Joseph Goldstein. https://tricycle.org/magazine/triumph-heart/
This coming Sunday, February 21, 2020, we’ll explore these and other ideas as we continue our month-long look at love: Ripples of Love. We’ll focus on what it means to love the “unlovable” and how our difficulty in loving certain people may reveal as much, or more, about us that about them.
You can watch our live stream here at our website this Sunday, the 21st of February 2021 @ 10 AM AZ time. Or, you can join the Zoom call by signing up for our newsletter (here on the sight). Join us as we consider how to love those we find difficult.