Very talented designer, Terese Newman, created several beautiful posters for us. I’ll share them from time to time. Here is one of them. Thanks, Terese!
This one was hard for me to grasp, but that’s because I had a preconceived notion of what Love is. See if you get as frustrated as I did!
Me: Hi Erik. What’s up?
Erik: Hi Mama. Hi everybody.
Me: Hey sweetie. We’re going to talk about some interesting stuff here. First tell me about Love. Is it some form of energy? What is Love?
Erik: Love is a type of energetic quality. It’s the basis of all emotions, and it’s pretty much what makes up our human souls.
Me: So we are Love?
Erik: Naturally, yes. We’re vibrations of emotions.
Me: So how can things like jealousy and resentment and things like that be a part of Love?
(Long pause, then Jamie laughs.)
Erik: That’s just like taking water and making tea.
Erik: Water is the basis for all drinks. Look at all the variety out there. Love is the basis for all emotions and look at all the variety out there. That’s all it is. It’s just about changing the vibrational quality of it, but it’s all based on the emotional quality called Love.
Me: But still, I don’t understand how something like hatred can be a facet of Love.
Erik (in mock disappointment): Aw. You didn’t like my drink metaphor?
Me: Oh, well. I don’t know. I don’t understand it. I like it, but I don’t understand it totally.
Erik: Look at beer and wine.
Erik: Those have much different qualities that water.
Me: Well can you give me an example in real life like this guy hates his roommate. How is that related to him having love for that roommate?
Erik: The emotion is hate. It’s a form of jealousy, a deep form because normally when we’re repulsed by something, it’s something we don’t understand and that we need to embrace or accept more. Usually when hating someone, we’re claiming some sort of responsibility for him, and we can’t fix it and make it better. That makes us have a blockage of emotional energy that we see as hate. But if we really knew we weren’t responsible for that roommate—let’s say he was dirty and we couldn’t get him to clean up—then we would have the right to get a maid to clean up and push everything into his room. If the roommate was angry and aggressive to you, you have every right to learn to communicate better or to move out. So hatred comes when you stay in a place and you’re trying to make something happen that doesn’t need to.
Erik: It’s going against natural choices. So how can you not understand that hate is a variation of Love? All of the emotions in the book are variations of Love.
So I’m a little slow. What can I say?
Me: In that case, where does the love for the roommate fit in?
Erik: Well, hell, if you’re not leaving when the situation is so bad…
Jamie: But that doesn’t make sense, though. I’m taking your mom’s side, and I’m arguing.
Erik: Well. You’re seeing Love, Mom, as an intimate thing. How are you viewing it? An acceptance.
Me: Is that what it is? I’m thinking about caring, feeling compassion, understanding.
Erik: Okay, well that’s compassion, then, Mom. That’s not Love. Compassion is a different variation of Love.
So I guess caring and understanding are facets of Love?
Me: Okay, what is Love, then?
Erik: Love is the acceptance of everything. So, you wouldn’t have hate if you didn’t have Love. You wouldn’t be irritated by the messiness or the anger or the conversation.
Me: So if I hate my roommate because he’s a big slob, then how can I love him? How can I accept him? Maybe I can’t accept him, and that means there’s no Love involved.
Jamie (laughing): He has his head up and he goes—
Jamie mimics Erik leaning back in the chair, slapping his hand against his forehead in exasperation.
Me (guiltily): I know. I know.
Erik: Really? We’re getting into the loop about roommates and laundry. It’s crazy!
Erik: If you have somebody in your life, and you love them but they’re doing something that you don’t like, you’re still loving them, but you’re sacrificing yourself by being around something that you don’t like, so you have to get up and fucking move or change it. You’re only responsible for you. You can’t make them change.
Me: Well maybe you don’t love them. How does Love fit in when you don’t love them?
I don’t think I’ve ever asked such a stupid question. Sigh.
Me: How could it be related to hate if you don’t even love them?
Erik: Then why would you be there in the first place, Mom? That doesn’t make sense.
No, it sure doesn’t.
Erik: You have to use a different example.
Me: You need to share the rent. I don’t know. You give me a different example. Well, jealousy of a friend, for example. So you have to love that friend for jealousy to even come into the picture?
Erik: No, you don’t have to love the person for jealousy to come into the picture, but jealousy is a variation of love.
Me: I just don’t see how that could be related to Love. I just don’t get it.
Erik: It’s like having a flashlight, Mom. You turn it on and [that light] is our example of Love. But then you put a red gel in front of it, and it becomes a red light. You put a green gel in front of it, and it becomes a green light. But the light has to be there for the emotion to be pronounced.
I guess that’s like saying the water has to be there to make beer. I think I’m starting to get it.
Erik: That light is the Love, the basis of all emotions.
Me: Ah, I see. Okay. So is it the highest form of energy? Unconditional Love, is it the highest vibrational frequency?
Erik: Yeah, that unconditional Love thing? Yeah.
Jamie laughs at the casual way he said it.
Me: So. Oh, go ahead.
Jamie: No, I just thought that “That unconditional Love thing…”
She laughs again.
Me: So we are unconditional Love? It’s not separate from us?
Me: Are we here to realize that, to remember it, too?
Erik: Experience it? Yes. To any degree, yes.
Me: All right. So, we’re here to remember that we are Love?
Erik: That’s the purpose of being human.
Me: And to remember how to love. I guess it’s both of those things.
Erik: Yes, and sometimes we have to remember how to love by going through things like jealousy, anger and all of the other emotions to get to the light. We have to get all the gels away from the flashlight until we have just a normal white light.
Me: That’s why we have to have that horrible contrast that makes the human experience so difficult sometimes!
Erik (fists shaking in front of him): Yeah!
Me: I know! In order to learn about that facet of love, forgiveness, sometimes you have to be hurt by someone.
Like a roommate?