After another discussion that ended in drama and tears I stormed out and slammed the door behind me. Again. The conversation kept ringing in my ears as I rushed down the narrow Amsterdam staircase, tears rolling down my face. As I walked out into the busy street the always happy guy from the bike rental across the road greeted me in his typically loud manner and I breathed in deeply. Why couldn’t we agree on what unconditional meant? Would my love ever be unconditional enough for him to make this work? Is this what I really wanted or was it just the idea that attracted me? It is so easy to say the words unconditional love but what does it really entice when it comes to living it?
Unconditional love is something we always rave about in literature and music and poetry. The highest form of love that is ever attainable. The only love that is pure because there are no conditions to it. But do we ever really think about what the word really means? Can we really do this? Some even call it a myth, something unobtainable. But is it? Are we able to love someone whatever he or she does or says or doesn’t do? What if they are 2 hours late very time you meet up? What if they sleep with other people randomly? What if they yell at you for nothing or become aggressive?
And what if they lie to you?
A lot of people would say: “Hey, unconditional love is possible, but it becomes very difficult if my lover isn’t completely open with me. I can deal with anything as long as we are honest to each other”. In hindsight that was actually my condition towards him, my Achilles heel as you could say. I expected complete openness, which he couldn’t give me, because that is just not who he is.
Lesson learned: unconditional love also means: no expectations.
So I wanted openness whereas he demanded me to be 100% unconditional, that was his condition, the way he interpreted this went into places I couldn’t even imagine. Like I could not say anything about anything. It became almost like a contest or a demand, and looking back that’s where it went off the rails from his side and he just lost me.
Lesson learned: unconditional love also means: no demands.
I actually learned a lot from this experience by understanding how deep conditions run in our systems, our brains, our customs, our opinions. Conditions on our love for others, on our love for ourselves, conditions on how we should be living or behaving or thinking. It gave me a great look into my inner workings and a great opportunity to start cleaning it all up. I learned that I truly want to live my life in freedom without learned conditions, towards myself and towards others, and that the road to getting there isn’t always straight forward, but it does get clearer every step of the way. I can feel the happiness of natural being growing inside of me day by day, and it becomes easier and easier to let go of a lot of the stuff that is really determined by culture or society, external elements, and to live more and more from the inside out, from the heart.
So, if you are dreaming about unconditional love, I could tell you that like in any relationship, there are bumps in the road. The idea is though, that with this type of love, it will always be there. Does that mean the relationship will last for ever? Not at all, but the love does, whether there is a relationship or not.
If you like to start practicing unconditional love to yourself and others, one easy exercise is to just keep an eye out for judgements, big and small judgemental thoughts that pop up in your head. Whenever you notice a judgement to yourself or someone else, step away from it, look at it from a distance, to see that this thought is not you and to know that it is also not true and then you just let go of that thought. Let it pop into nothingness like a soap bubble that dissolves. Keep popping those bubbles and most importantly have fun doing it. If it helps you imagine that they are pink bubbles or any other colour that you love. I’m sure you will love it once you get the hang of it and see how much space it gives you.