Free Love: Tales of a Caged Jail-Bird
Before I get started….did you catch the homonym? Tails…Tales (snickers and pauses)…ok, it’ll all become clear in the end.
Free love is the type of love that you’re not obligated to return, but it’s welcome. Free love is the type of love that’s NOT obligated to stay, but it’s understood that it will eventually leave. Free love is the type of love that you experience momentarily, because you know that more is on the way. Free love cannot be contained, controlled, nor restricted. It is the natural and the supernatural. Free love is real love.
I may have been born in ’84, but I remember seeing those “Free Love” T-shirts that the hippies used to wear. When I see those words in the same frame, I don’t only see a “type of love” being expressed, but rather an approach towards love. It was a statement of liberation, but not in the sense of…”let’s get naked, smoke weed, get drunk, and party”….but rather, to stop controlling/imprisoning a love that was never yours to begin with. Each experience of love is borrowed. One of the first acts of love we are taught as children: sharing. But sharing is circumstantial.
The great thing about retaining the freedom to come to God is the freedom to leave God. You’re probably thinking “John, why would I ever wanna to leave God?!” In case you didn’t know, we leave God (even though, technically, it’s impossible to leave an omnipresent being) because coming to God requires the opportunity to come in the first place. We come to God so that we may know ourselves (because God is the parent, and children are a reflection of their parents). How can you come to God when you’re already with God? That’s like saying “I’m going to Walmart” while you’re standing in Walmart’s Electronics Department. In order to know who and what God is, you have to know who and what God is not. And here’s the face-slapper, the things we imagine that God is not, God is! Because God is EVERYTHING! So in order to know real love, you have to practice letting go of it. And because love is multifaceted, there are many, many ways of letting go.
Have you ever been taught that real love holds on and never let’s go? (smh) I mean, come on!
(In Andre 3000 voice): Never!?… N-never-never??…… N-never-never???!!!!
This is an illusion. And we believe this “security blanket” type of love to be attractive; maybe for a moment, yes. Being on the receiving end of an overprotective mother’s love is ok…at first. But then, you realize how damaging it is to the relationship. Momma lacks faith in your innate power to preserve yourself. She’s stripping you of your power to love yourself, and replacing it with hers; this is a form of control, but of course, she sees no harm in it. Her lack of faith in you is, in turn, hindering her own growth because if her focus is on you, she can’t focus on her own growth. We don’t cease to grow after a certain age. Evolution is perpetual. Change is necessary. Death is imminent. And strangely enough, all three of these short sentences are beautifully intertwined, so they pretty much mean the same thing. Anyway, what about the insecure lover? This is the one that believes in their significant other so much, that they don’t believe in themselves enough to live without them. You’ll tolerate the BS (cheating, beatings, lying, laziness, forgotten birthdays and anniversaries, etc), and swear to God in every language possible, that you’ll leave; but that little voice in your head says that you’re a forgiving person, and that things will change because things don’t last forever, and that he/she has potential, and numerous other reasons you can conjure. And sure, you’ll give your all to your lover, but aren’t you going to save some for yourself? Sharing is caring, but sharing means “I’m giving some… but I’m keeping some, too!” The insecure lover gives their all, but when the secure lover leaves, insecure lover is left in a state of bitterness while drowning in a pool of depression because their investment just left. Instead of investing a little in themselves AND their lover, they went all in; and they expected an equal if not more profitable return. In this context, insecurity is the psycho-path to stalking! Some people won’t let go, and will do whatever it takes to get what they deserve….even by force.
They’ll be singing in their Drake voice: I better find your love and I better find your heart. I bet if give all my love then nothing’s gonna tear us apart …o_O
Heh…ok….but aye, to each their own.
The thing is, our insecurity hinders us from recognizing our own self love; we’ll see ourselves in everyone else except ourselves, and invest in those people; so much that we’ll become lost in everyone else’s life…literally. So, when you believe that love holds on, you receive unnecessary heartache. This heart condition stays with you; and it kills you as slow as a decade’s worth of second hand smoke.
So, yes, as you already know, you just have to allow things to happen at some point in your life because commitment operates jointly; meaning the things you choose, have to choose you.
I mean, what if Pikachu decided not to choose Ash?
Ash: “Pikachu!! I choose yooouuuuu!!”
Ash: “Pikachu? What’s wrong?”
Ash: (sobbing) “You’re leaving me!? B-but…but…why!?”
Pikachu: (screaming) “Peeeeeekaaaaaachuuuuuu!!”
(lightning strikes Ash)
Gotta respect the choices of others, ya dig?
Regarding human relationships, love stays for all of the reasons in the universe, and it leaves for the all of the same reasons. Love is to be experienced in its many forms in order to know how perfect it is. However, you cannot know perfect love if you experience love in ONE particular way, especially in a moment that never changes. It would be like freezing in the moment – a snapshot of life. Imagine a moment where you were angry. Now imagine the intensity of your anger becoming constant, as in your anger doesn’t grow nor shrink. You’d feel controlled. You’d feel restricted. You’d feel like a robot. And after a while, you would feel numb because, well, there’s no change to your feeling. After you’ve experienced something for so long, it loses its zest. Have you ever hurt so bad, for so long, that you no longer felt the sensation of “pain”? Essentially, you graduated into a condition of indifference where you didn’t feel pain or pleasure. And even in this experience is a hidden jewel – a condition of love – which exists within an infinite spectrum of unconditional love. Although this isn’t pure love, it remains to be a form of love expressed in a moment. Imagine if this frozen moment were to continue…it would change forms…. forever and ever. << This is life. This is God. This is love. And it’s free.
Have you ever allowed yourself to be vulnerable? You know; the art of risk-taking. Of course you have; and this is a form of letting go. How often do you allow yourself to be vulnerable with people? Have you ever allowed yourself to fall in love? Will you? Are you in love, and do you remember how much faith it took to do this? Maybe you’re trying to avoid falling in love? Most people withhold themselves from falling in love so that they can maintain self control; or rather it’s a preventive measure against the pain that’s yet to come. What’s crazy is how it’s impossible to truly fall in love unless you let go, and it’s impossible to fall out of love unless you do the same. Let go of yourself to fall in love; let go of your lover to fall out of love. This goes to show that you shouldn’t “follow your heart”, but you should guide the love that comes from it.
Ultimately, once the trust is exhausted, the relationship goes through a chaotic and dull phase that promotes the Osmosis phase of the relationship. But instead of trying to prevent the chaos, how about we attempt to understand the circumstances that lead to this painful necessity. It is when we understand that love lets go, after it offers itself, that we possess an unshakeable optimism that strides towards the perfect love we all seek.
Would it be convenient if “letting go” was easy as deleting friends from your Facebook page, your Myspace account, Twitter account, email address book, cell phone, or your instant messenger’s friends list? I presume so. But then accepting people in your life would be equally convenient. And let’s face it, a great deal of us would require a security clearance before we even loan (or grant) $3 to someone we’ve just met. But let’s not neglect the many and the brave whom we call the easily attached. Regardless of how you enter and exit the relationship, you need the same strength and faith that it took to become vulnerable, in order to separate. And this process can be as painful as pulling out a splinter…depending on the size of the splinter, how deep it is, and your tolerance for pain! All of that emotional digging you have to do in order to release all of that built up emotion. Yep, yep…separation anxiety; don’t you just hate being viewed as the villain when you were trying so hard to be the protagonist? You see, the first law of love is: love thyself first and always. Relationships often terminate because we don’t respect this law during the relationship. Why you ask? Because we also keep in mind, the law that states that we will love others as we would love ourselves. However, the latter of the two laws implies that we know how to love ourselves. In order to be SELF-Less, you have to first be SELFish. How can you give yourself, when you don’t have an abundance of yourself to begin with? And understand that we have no control over how others will love or hate us; we submit knowledge of ourselves in faith that we’ll be loved as we love ourselves. How you love yourself may not agree with the way I love myself. And this fact, when applicable, can develop a disconnection between the lovers; and when there’s a disconnection, there’s distance – physically, emotionally, financially, mentally…socially….and environmentally (we don’t even wanna breathe the same air!).
What about sharing? You know, letting go of the gift of life that you bestowed? This may come in the form of praise and encouragement, a toy, a phone, a car, advice, an organ, blood, a house, money, food, a pet, instruction, jewelry, personal information, a poem, an idea; it can be anything! Life begets life, and although there are responsibilities that come with these gifts, there should be a pact of total freedom to nourish it. I retain the freedom to give as I will, while the receiver retains the freedom to accept as they will. The appreciation and application of the gift is reserved for the receiver; I mean, really, it’s their gift, not mine. We give ourselves so that we may know ourselves OUTSIDE of ourselves. Contrary to this, we often have so much control over ourselves, that whenever we give ourselves (or anything within our possession), we try to control the experience that comes along with it. Is this fair? Is it righteous that I strip away the freedom of experience simply because I’m afraid you won’t appreciate or apply my gift in the way I would? Yes, we all desire that our gifts be appreciated, but haven’t you ever depreciated a gift that was given? Haven’t you ever ignored someone’s advice? Haven’t you ever manipulated someone’s instruction? By relinquishing all control of the uncontrollable, we’re respecting the infinite paradigm in which love operates.
What about letting go of the deceased? I’ve said previously that death is imminent, change is necessary, and evolution is perpetual. You cannot evolve if nothing changes. Death brings change to our lives, and in order for us to evolve, we must adapt to these changes. In order to adapt, we must accept the conditions that life offers. I say offer because you don’t have to accept what’s offered; you have a choice. However, the offering doesn’t dissipate simply because you reject it. Accept death as part of life, because it plays a part in life. When you’re placed in a position in which death occurs (whether directly or indirectly), it’s advised that we leave the incidence in place, but choose to move forward. It’s natural to feel remorse for someone you’ve known so well; but we don’t truly know a person completely. We know what they deliver to us; whether it’s consistent or not, we should take them as granted because they were in our lives at no cost to our own. These lives were a gift – each one was a free gift. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be alive to experience them, because your life would be exchanged for theirs, and you still wouldn’t be within reach to experience this free gift. Death is destined to arrive, and no one is immune from this constant truth. How we feel about certain events, doesn’t change the events; however, our feelings can alter our future. Even in death, we must “let go”, and allow ourselves to transcend and move on so that we may all meet again. Besides, I imagine that it makes the process much less painful.
So when we love the people or things that we encounter, and we connect, we must enter our relationships with these people, and these things, knowing that there is an alpha and an omega. And although we conceptualize this truth, living it is much more difficult.
Did I say it was going to be easy?!
I’m just saying…. learning to let go is a process. And this process Re-Presents itself in many forms. Isn’t that just like love? – To die and resurrect as something else? Yet, no matter how many transformations that love undergoes, you recognize its essence. If love was a Jailbird, most of us are still immature enough to try and keep it Caged…. like a Pet. And in our childishness, we Cry when it escapes. We grow bitter and angry. We impose wrath in everything within reach, until we realize that….life still goes on….and that there are more exotic birds to explore.
What are your thoughts on letting go? Can you think of other ways of letting go? Do you have a story? A short poem? Artwork? Are you struggling with this concept of “letting go”? Share your views so that we may multiply!
(chucks sideways deuce)