Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Love, Lovability and Jealousy

Most people assume the problem causing jealousy is coming from outside them: she is trying to take him away from me; he wanted that prize and now she's won it and is lording it over him trying to hurt him; how come he can afford that new car and I can't?

But the problems are the feelings generated inside us. If we trusted that a person truly loved us and that all would work out to the best end possible for all concerned, if we trusted that we were fundamentally lovable and loved ourselves unconditionally, none of it would happen. We would not need to feel jealous. Your girl or your guy might still be interested in someone else, but it would not threaten your sense of self-worth or feeling that you are loved and lovable. So jealousy would not be a problem, you could just be happy that they'd found someone else to love along with loving you, since there's no limit to the amount of love there is in the world or in a person. Likewise they would be happy for you if you found another. No one would abandon you, because they'd still love you, they'd just love twp people, and how wonderful that they love two people, let them love ten!

I know it sounds either impossible or too gag-me-with-a-spoon sentimental, but it works for me, or sounds right to me, even though I have never accomplished it. Why not? Because so far, and I don't know why, perhaps because my dopamine- and serotonin-altering drugs reduce my drive, so far I have had no particular feelings of attachment to people, so I have not been bothered by jealousy of that sort. (Yes, I would perhaps be jealous of someone were they to get a prize I coveted, for my writing say, but I don't know how deep it would cut...due to the dampening effects of the selfsame drugs.) At this point, though, I fear I cannot love at all. Can one love without wanting physical contact? I really like a lot of people, male and female, but I am terribly afraid they will touch me -- physically --in some way that demands response. I can give a casual hug, finally, and shake hands. And one friend who is trained as a massage therapist in CA has given me an abbreviated back massage...But I otherwise shy from contact with other people. If others demand it, I throw their friendships away. So I've always felt I was unable to love...

I cannot approach jealousy, then, from the love point of view, not understanding it properly. But what about from the work and achievement aspect. If you feel truly lovable, does it matter who wins a prize? You'd know the value of your work and the value of yourself and the latter wouldn't depend on the former. You'd be certain you were loved and that you were valuable, that your work was good, whether you won the prize or not. Some people only work in order to win that prize because it all comes down to impressing others to elicit love from them; people like that don't feel fundamentally lovable otherwise than with that sort of proof. If they did, so many bad feelings would drop away...But we need to feel, well, not just lovable, but to love ourselves, first of all, we need to unconditionally simply accept ourselves as we are, carbuncles, corns and every other imperfection included. Once we accept outselves without precondition, and without condition, that is to say, without saying at any time, I love you, except, or unless...it is hard to allow another person's bad opinion to make us feel bad. If I feel I am okay fundamentally, why should someone else saying I'm "half-baked" or mediocre etc matter to me? Why should my merely losing a contest...which is after all usually no more than someone else's opinion of my work (my writing or art) undermine me or make me jealous? If I care about myself, and know my value, then I can realistically appraise my level of expertise and how far I have come as writer and artist, and know "how good I am" in whatever I do. Then I do not need the validation of a prize, and when I get one or when I do not, it need never change my feelings or opinions of myself or my work.

You have to love yourself, because you are going to make mistakes and you will need to be able to forgive yourself. You have to know that you are lovable, fundamentally, because you can love yourself. No matter how bad a mistake you make, no matter how thoughtless you accidentally are, no matter how mean your thoughts and words might sometimes be, that you know, beyond a doubt, the YOU are lovable despite all of that. If only we knew that, all of us, maybe we'd feel less insecure in the world. I know I still obsess about being evil and taking up too much space in the world. And I feel incredibly hate-able, despite all that I have said above. I feel like any Force or Energy or Essence or Spirit or God that might have set us spinning is disgusted by me and will soon teach me a terrible lesson, revenge-time, you know. I have all these unlovable-me feelings that run underneath all my fine words and undermine all I do. But can you imagine if I did not?

Did any of you see the movie: WHAT THE BLEEP DO WE KNOW? If not, you absolutely Must. When you see those photos of water, plain water, vs water that has been prayed over, water that has been told, I love you, and water that has been told, You make me sick, I hate you! It will break your heart but in a good way. The man -- his comment to Marlee Matlin then means everything. The movie is part documentary, part movie-movie, part weirdness animation, but I loved it and so far so has everyone I know who has seen it. It might give you some ideas to think about when jealousy and bad feelings and feelings of unlovabity hit you, too.

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