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By Michael Bernard Beckwith
There are aspects of ourselves that we find easy to love, while there are others that remain challenging to hold with love as we continue to grow and evolve. When I founded Agape 31 years ago, my life and practice were rooted in a strong sense of self-love and the love of God, as it took an enormous amount of love and surrender to manifest the sacred idea that was Agape. While my serving and giving came from enthusiasm and pure love, there were still pockets of “not-enoughness” hiding out in my subconscious. This showed up as sometimes saying yes to requests when perhaps I should have said no, not always taking enough time for myself, and not having the capacity to receive all the love that was surrounding me. I wasn’t able to “stop and smell the roses” and fully appreciate the good works I’ve had the opportunity to participate in, individually and with the community.
I’m grateful to say that over the years I’ve allowed myself to see more objectively all the good that had evolved, both within myself, and the Beloved Agape Community. There wasn’t a specific “a-ha” moment or revelation that I can credit this awareness to, but rather the fruits of the consistent Spiritual practice of self-love, self-acceptance and self-appreciation.
With self-love, we embrace all parts of ourselves. When there is a lack of it, there is a tendency to project onto life and others our subconscious mindsets, such as feelings of inadequacy, fear and blame. These same false beliefs show up in relationship to ourselves as guilt, doubt and shame, which obstruct the Truth and the giving-ness of the Spirit that is seeking expression through and as us.
We are born of original blessing, not original sin. Each of us is a manifestation of Sprit’s outpouring of Love. Each of us is worthy of our own self-love and acceptance. And as we evolve, we can meet ourselves with greater and greater compassion.
The Practice: Close your eyes and contemplate a time when you felt deeply loved. Amplify this feeling tone by placing your hand over your heart, taking several deep breaths and allowing this feeling of love to expand within your entire being. Do this multiple times throughout your day. You’ll be glad you did!
“Self-Awareness Without Self-Expression Leads To Frustration.”
Dr. Michael Beckwith
2017 Agape International Spiritual Center | 5700 Buckingham Parkway Culver City, California 90230 | (310) 348-1250