Experiencing the Love of the Universe

Over the years, almost all of us have had multitudinous experiences of love. Early on we experienced the love of our parents, then the love of our siblings, friends, relatives, and then for most of us love in a personal love relationship. But what about feeling the love of the Universe? That’s such an abstract and even impersonal experience that it doesn’t even register with many people.

Our associations with the Universe include the stars, the Moon, man-made satellites, and the zodiac, and mostly the vastness of the sky at night, when we think about it. But to associate all of that vastness and impersonality with love as we know it is difficult. Yet some people employ the term, “love of the Universe, and the way they use it gives us clues as to what the term might mean.

There’s a really heartwarming story¬†in the news right now about Ernest McCray the father of 44 year old Deborah McCray, who was placed on respiratory support after suffering a heart attack. Ernest is a retired school principal in California, and in his role as an administrator he was accustomed, over the years, to working with a large department of personnel on whom he relied day in and day out. Being principal of a public school is a selfless role, and one that required broad mindedness. For one thing, a public school principal, both as a principal and as educator, must learn to be tolerant of and friendly with people from many different religious, cultural and racial backgrounds. This role inspired Ernest to develop a more universal outlook on life, and sensitivity to the brotherhood of man.

In a recent blog post Ernest wrote “It’s painful and there’s no escaping it but I feel the love of the universe through the sweet power of the good wishes that you all have sent my family’s way. Ernest closed with a quote from a poem by the Arabic poet Hafiz.

“How did the rose ever open its heart and give it to this world all its beauty? It felt the encouragement of light against its Being; otherwise, we all remain too frightened. ”

In his blog and in the poem Ernest expressed a sentiment that is echoed in a song by Santana entitled “All the Love of the Universe,” which closes with the line”

“Everybody needs a helping hand.”

Santana, Ernest, and the rose in Hafiz’s poem all felt the love of the universe through love that comes from others. We can see the reason for this most readily in the Hafiz poem, because it uses a metaphor taken from nature. Love and support of our fellow humans is likened to the encouragement of the Sun. The Sun shines down and gives its warmth to all, rich and poor, good and evil, worthy and unworthy. From the Sun’s perspective, no one is denied service because he can’t pay, and no one is turned away because he is evil; all are worthy.

Perhaps we can most readily feel the love of the Universe when we receive love and encouragement from those who are furthest from us, distant friends or acquaintances, as opposed to our close loved ones, whose love we feel worthy of receiving. When people we know only peripherally freely share a kindness or affection with us, they are manifesting a form of human love which is closest to the impersonal and non-judgmental kindnesses that come from the Universe.

The importance of being non-judgmental of others is emphasized by the Viking author Ted Sun in his book “Super Life Secret Codes.” According to the author, being critical of others and getting upset with others, is a terrible side-tract that wastes lots of energy. “We must learn to have kindness,” he points out. And, he adds, even when we meet an enemy we should be thankful for the challenge he brings. Always, he notes, we should remember the love we feel from the Universe, which provides energy to us all free of charge, without “any preset conditions.”

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