Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.
– Lao Tzu
In the suggested Al-Anon closing, it says “… although you may not like all of us, you'll love us in a very special way, the same way we already love you.” When I first heard this, I didn't know what to think. It seemed a bit corny. But I have found it to be quite true. This love was exhibited in my first meeting, when I mumbled something about my situation and cried, and everybody was silent, letting me say my little bit through my tears and sobs. It was shown by the members who offered me, a stranger, their phone numbers. We see it whenever one of us shares from our own heart, that another member may find a bit of solace and help. From this totally unexpected, unconditional love, came the strength to begin to do the work of the program. And, as I did that work, I found within myself the same love for others. I could feel it in the special peace and serenity that descended on me like a blanket, whenever I walked into a meeting. I could feel it as I identified with someone's sharing. And that love gave me courage. First, the courage of belief in the process. Courage to “change the things I can,” which is only myself. Courage to face those parts of me that I don't like so much. Courage to own them and to ask my Higher Power with acceptance and humility to remove them from me. And the courage to support others in the program through sponsorship. And as I do, my love comes back to me through them, completing the circle. Truly, we can keep it only by giving it away.
A meditation for January 8, 2013.
Pete Townshend – Let My Love Open The Door