Gandhi is a master at drawing our attention back to one single, significant truth: love is power, and as such it can be developed. If I love you only to the extent that you love me, I am not loving you– I am engaging in a transaction with you. Can I keep my receipt? If you take away this much “love,” I withdraw that much more. That is not love, it is tit-for-tat! Love is an open practice, not a currency, and certainly not a threat (which calculated giving certainly can be, as we know to our cost). Like any good teacher of his craft, Gandhi inspires us to do more than we think we are capable of. He asks us to love not only those who love us back–that’s easy enough–but to love those who do not even like us. Can we really do the impossible? Our capacity for love–closely connected to our self-respect– can only grow when put it to the test. Nonviolence is referred to as “love in action,” after all, and through nonviolence we can become capable of anything, even–especially–selfless love.
Put your love into action today.
The Metta Center for Nonviolence, PO Box 98, Petaluma, California 94953 707-774-6299 firstname.lastname@example.org