We have all been raised with the notion that we will find our “better half” somewhere out there. Or that our soulmate will somehow complete us. We often meet someone, fall in love and think the love we feel is because of them.
In our confusion, this keeps us on a search for love in this other, either by trying to find the “right” partner or by trying to change them to make us feel the love we crave, innocently setting ourselves up for failure, frustration and loneliness.
Some people search in relationships, others in food, money, drugs…but, regardless, it all boils down to the same misunderstanding—that there is an incompleteness that needs to be filled. This core misunderstanding creates our suffering; a sense of not being whole and then the mind believes its fulfillment is gained in the world.
But if we are looking to be filled by another, it will never be enough. As soon as the search is outside ourselves, we move away from the awareness that love is who we are already. Even if we were to “find love,” it could only be temporarily satisfying and could never deeply offer us what we yearn for because we would still be moving from the core misunderstanding of “not enough.”
We look for love in the world until we know we are the source of it. The truth is, we never needed anyone or anything to complete us. It was simply a misunderstanding the mind made up. Who you are is already love—just as you are now.
We become blind to this realization when we believe the thoughts that keep us on a continuous search for more. Thoughts like, “I want them to love me,” take us away from our power by keeping us looking for love “out there.” These thoughts create a sense of incompleteness and then we lose sight of what’s actually true.
The apparent rejection of another is not what causes our suffering; it’s in having abandoned our own hearts and believed the mind’s misunderstandings that hurt.
We never actually get love from our partners. They may evoke a sense of love within us, but that evoking happens within us. They never gave it to us, it was here prior to them coming into our lives and it is here after they leave. It has nothing to do with another; it is simply a projection of ourselves.
One of the greatest gifts we can offer ourselves and our partners, is to stop and realize that this longing for love is a wake-up call back home to ourselves.
Let’s try something together right now. Think of someone in your life with whom you’ve felt absolutely loved and unconditionally accepted by. It could be a lover, a friend, grandparent, parent, or even a pet.
Take a moment to bring this person forward either as an image in your mind or as a felt sense in your body. Now recall an experience with them when you felt completely seen, accepted and at peace. Soak in that for a moment. (Really take the time now.) Let it fill your entire experience….
Can you feel it? Notice how that same love is available now, even when they’re not here.
As we stay rooted within the awareness of where love comes from, we no longer cling to, or try to demand it from, another. We are in love with or without them and so we allow everyone to be just as they are, because we don’t need anything from them.
Nothing needs to change in order for us to realize this. That’s the thing about realization, it only happens now. It’s always a moment-to-moment invitation to discover for ourselves what’s true…to discover who we are beyond all the beliefs.
Anytime you find yourself looking for love, know that it’s totally okay, but let it be a reminder to put your hand on your heart, to take a deep breath and notice the love that is here already, before we go searching for it. What we are looking for is so much closer than our minds would have us believe.
In truth, this is what we are really craving anyway. This love is unconditional, always available, with or without someone else, and could never be taken away. This then becomes a freer, truer way to love.
Then when we meet someone, they add to the love we are already connected to. We overflow in love together, but we are sourced within ourselves.
May you discover the origin of love right here in your own heart and see that everyone is your soulmate helping you wake up to the love that you are.
This is what Valentine’s Day is really about, and then the entire world becomes our Valentine, and we project this love all over the world.
“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.” ~ Buddha
Author: Alyssa Nobriga
Editor: Travis May
Image: Flickr/Leo Hidalgo