Reflection on the Imperfection of Love
Written March 2018
As I sit here, nursing a sucker punch combo of laryngitis and bronchitis, I reflect (because what else can I do!) on how, three years ago, I could count the number of people I loved on my fingers with a couple left to spare. These days, in contrast, I'm not sure where to end the count. The phenomenal rapidity within which I've found is more room to love, surprises me. Today I tell many different people I love them. I mean it. It surprises me to mean it.
It surprises me what love is, as explored through the embodied experience of it. It defies boundaries and sense. It is, as Alan Watts describes, like "the colors of the spectrum produced by the passing light through a prism." This poses a challenge to our psyche. We like to weigh and measure the world around us. We quantify and qualify, make a resource out of love, and then, like all resources, we become concerned there may only exist a finite amount of it. We wonder, is there enough to go around? We wonder, more pressingly, is there enough for me?
We become frightened and seek order, put conditions on what we must do and who we must be to give and get love. We decide a certain level of internal and external merit must be met, expressed and reciprocated. We place enormous expectations for perfection on ourselves and on others, and suffer for it because we are innately imperfect.
Therein lies the rub: love is an imperfect state of being and an imperfect state of action. Ebbing and flowing, and occasionally flooding, it is a feeling state with no rationality of formation. The is no condition to be met, no merit to be achieved, no perfection to be set, for us to experience love.
Perfect, then, to feed our imperfect selves and imperfect existences. Perfect, too, to feed imperfect others and an imperfect world.
And how to feed love? How to manufacture that which is ever changing and mutable? Let's liken it to medicine (ahem). An elixir we can choose to drink down when it presents itself, every time it presents itself, in all its extraordinary flavors.
Yes, I will tell you this, sometimes it will burn going down. I will also tell you, it is always worth it.
Copyright © 2020 Sophie Nazerian