Monday, July 4

Conversations from an after-mass gathering.

So, as is becoming my pattern, I traveled to one of our sister parishes to attend their monthly Celtic Mass.  As is becoming traditional, I sang with the choir (because they let me and they are awesome).  After mass, I was invited to a choir get-together at one of the choir members home.  There was food and drink and long conversations on the patio.  In short, it was wonderful.  One of the conversations circled around the twin concepts of fear and love being the two prime motivating factors of the human condition.

This idea isn't new.  My Sihing used to say just that, that Fear and Love drive all other emotions.  What is new is something which came to me during the conversation was the underlying natures of fear and love.

Fear is, at it's core, a selfish, inward emotion.  It is all about you and how others affect you.  It is about judgement, exclusion, pain and separation.  As such, it is the root of all negative emotions.  Fear is most often about closing ourselves off ; from each other, from ourselves, from God.

In direct contrast, love is a selfless, outward emotion.  It is about others and how you affect others.  It is about tolerance, inclusion, joy and communion.  As such, it is the root of all positive emotions.  Love is most often about opening ourselves up ; to each other, to ourselves, to God.

We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. (1 Jn. 4:16-18)
There is nothing, then, to fear in God, for knowing Him is to abide in love and the more we know Her, the more perfectly and completely we are suffused in love.  Being suffused with love, we have nothing to fear from ourselves.  Being filled with love, we have nothing to fear from others.

So very simple, when you think of it.  Putting it into practice may take some more work.  ;)

P. S. - after posting this, something else just came to me.  That we, as creations of the Divine with free will, have the choice to fear or to love.  We choose to live in fear or to live in love.  Consider this carefully. 
We choose to close ourselves off or open ourselves up. 
We choose to live in pain or in joy. 
We choose to live in judgement or in acceptance.
We choose to abide in God or not.

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