• Mark Mittlesteadt

Conditional Love

Love is unconditional, yet we place many conditions on it.

I will love you if____________.

I will love myself if _________.

We talk about love being unconditional, and real love surely is without conditions, and yet we place conditions on it all the time, out of the programming of our faulty thoughts and beliefs about what love really is.

We'd like to believe we love unconditionally, but the truth is we do put conditions on it. We say we love our family unconditionally, especially our children. One cannot love and hold anger, worry, fear, anxiety or guilt at the same time. The energy of love is so pure, it is what created us and it is our sole purpose in life. Yet, we place conditions on love without even being aware that we do so. We say we love our family, and yet we may place the condition of obligation on it. We might then love them out of obligation, not out of pure love. We sometimes feel obligated to love people that, if given the choice, would have never selected them to be in our life, and so out of obligation we say we love them. We love our children, so long as they meet the conditions. Should they fail to meet these conditions, we withhold it. We get angry with them when they fail to meet our conditions, i.e.- not following our rules, behaving in a manner that tests our emotional reaction, etc. yet anger and love cannot coexist. We are happy with, and love people so long as they meet the condition of not disturbing our energy. The minute they disturb our energy, love disappears, if only briefly. It's a part of the programming we hold. We may very well love others and believe it is unconditional, but upon closer examination we can almost always find some condition we attach to it, however slight the condition is. We can do this without any awareness or intention.

We do this with everyone, including ourselves, always having a condition that must be met or we withhold love, at least until the condition is fulfilled. Consider how we love our own self. Think of how many conditions we place on love before we will love ourselves. Anything we are not happy with is nothing more than a programmed condition we place on love. If we have an unfulfilling job or career, it isn't the job itself we hate. We hate ourselves for having to do it. If we are overweight, we don't hate being overweight. We hate ourselves for being overweight. The relationships we have with others are based solely on the relationship we have with our self. If we don't fully love ourselves, just as we are, it is nothing more than not meeting the conditions we have placed on love. Then we look to others to fill that lack of love, thereby placing conditions on others. When they fail to meet those conditions of filling what we withhold from ourselves, we then withhold love from them as well.

Our entire programmed concept of love is highly conditional and we express it from that programming. When we can learn to love without conditions, that is pure love. This kind of love is pure energy and it is the love we express out of our purpose in being here. This kind of love changes everything. When we love ourselves, just as we are, without any conditions, out of this love we care for our physical health or we choose careers aligned with this love for ourselves (which is what we typically believe to be our purpose...i.e. - "doing what we love"). When we love ourselves fully, we no longer depend on others to fill this void created by the lack of love for our self, thus placing no conditions on another. This allows us to have healthy, loving relationships with others without the need for them to meet our expectations before we will love them. When we love ourselves fully, without conditions, we no longer feel undeserving of great wealth, health, loving relationships or rewarding careers. In this love we fully express our purpose in all that we do.

Our belief that as humans we cannot love ourselves and others all the time, is a condition, if not a limitation we place on love. It is the condition of justification and rationalization for the lack of love we feel in any given moment because we will not allow ourselves to express love for another when they think, say or do anything that disturbs our energy. Even the idea of "original sin" is based on the faulty logic of "conditional love". God is Love. Apparently God even had conditions on love. He loved us, so long as we met the condition of not eating from the tree of knowledge. We didn't meet that condition and so we got kicked out of paradise. Such is conditional love. We use this as a basis for our own justification for withholding love as if it were a birthright. But love itself has no such conditions. Love is unconditional.

As cliche as it sounds, love truly is the answer. Until we learn to love ourselves unconditionally, we will always struggle with the elements of life. Loving ourselves fully leaves us with peace, contentment, happiness, joy and fulfillment. We are in search for our purpose in life, but the truth is love is our purpose. It is in love that our purpose is revealed and expressed in all that we do.

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