Think of your favorite friend. What about a beloved grandparent or teacher? Sometimes we may encounter a person who carefully listens to us and responds to us.
Unfortunately, for some of us, this may be rare. I think love is listening and responding. A nurturing mother responds to the baby’s cry with milk, changing a diaper, or a hug. Doing this moment to moment is love.
Many of us see the value of self care; we value adequate sleep, healthful food, and exercise. Most of us know the pleasure and value of having fun. Yet it seems play is a forgotten activity of our past. Authentic play has immense value – calming of pain, restoring our energy, and evoking excitement and joy.
I remember hearing, “don’t be so selfish.” Often people just assume that focusing on our desires is narcissistic or just a waste of time. If you are not enjoying your life because you neglect yourself, then what are you seeking?
Jesus emphasized that the most important aspects of his teaching are:
“Love God with all your heart, all your Soul, all your mind and all your strength. Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Why are you neglecting yourself? Is it idealism?
I think that it is through self love that we are able to love others. When I am rested, fed and content, I am most receptive to the needs and wants of others I value.