Let’s Fall In Love And Keep Falling!
By Bruce Davis, Ph.D.
Falling in love is one of the most wonderful journeys we can make. Most everyone enjoys falling in love in theory, but in practice, we place limits and roadblocks on the falling. As soon as we find someone interesting, we typically begin to organize, categorize, and put the relationship into some mental frame so that we don’t fall too far, too fast, too much, and get hurt...or worse, get crushed in the landing. From nearly the moment we begin falling in love, we often become preoccupied with making as soft a landing as possible. We don’t want to be disappointed. We don’t want to be left hanging. Our open heart feels great, but let’s not lose everything in the process. Who knows where the heart will take us? With love comes endless questions as we try to control the heart from flying away into too much awe and mystery.
Where will we live? What will we do? How many kids? In our falling in love, the mind races to somehow manage what is happening in the heart. We enjoy the feeling of love, but only so much. We are trying to create boundaries. Have you considered this? And what about that? There’s a great conspiracy to limit love, its size, and its intensity. Let’s love one another but not get carried away. Where are the great masters teaching us that being carried away is what love is all about?
Fortunately, there is a moment in the falling in love when only love exists. Who cares what others think? For now, there is only love, nothing else matters. This moment can last days, weeks, years. We hear of couples that are still in love after ten, twenty, fifty years...or even longer. More often, we hear about neighbors and friends who are somewhere in the midst of dividing property or breaking up after a few months or years. Love’s hard landing and eventually separation has overshadowed the falling which was too little and too long ago. Love grows old quickly after the falling stops.
Love in modern life does not have a very good reputation. For many people, having a significant other is a distraction, a curse, and something to avoid at all costs. Love is too consuming, too heart wrenching, too messy to deal with. The number-one defense against accidentally falling in love is to stay busy. Let’s be practical! Who has time for such a journey? Few ask, what is time for other than love? Some people who say they are available for love are nevertheless more prepared for the landing. Their list of likes and dislikes are very clear on their dating site. Everyone is warned. Everyone is on alert for liars and cheaters. The bottom line is that if you are interested in me, be sure you have read my profile. There can be some falling in love as long as it has limits and does not interfere with the things I love: my apartment, career, friends, family, daily activities, pet, hobbies, and winter vacation in Colorado. Love is fine and okay as long as my life is still comfortable, safe, and easy.
In the pre-Internet days, it took months (or longer) before we knew about previous partners, sexual preferences, and what we wanted from our next partner. Now, this and a lot more is all in a person’s profile before we have even met for coffee. The great falling in love and slowly getting to know one another is old-fashioned. Nobody really believes anymore that love conquers all. With love, anything and everything may be possible, but love is more known for its downsides than its miraculous powers.
Most people think falling in love is about seeing one another naked. It is actually about seeing something much deeper. Falling in love is seeing the angels underneath the skin. Under the appearances of life (what we do, wear, think, and say) is something more...life’s real beauty. Underneath our likes and fears or our habits and attachments, underneath what everyone else sees, is something special that only the lover can see. There is the unique presence we call love. Falling in love is recognizing this unique presence and wanting to enjoy it forever. Heaven and earth are no longer separate. There is only heaven. People who are in love say they feel like they are floating. Love has taken over their normal world of schedules and demands. Love makes each meal special...no matter how it tastes. Love is living in the now. You know you are in love when there is no past and no future...there is only now. Life is a grand ship floating in the eyes and hearts of all lovers. There is an endless ocean within us and all around us. Life and love stretch for the horizon in all directions. You want to keep falling into this ocean.
Why would anyone want to fall out of love? Where is there to land when the falling is so freeing, so absolutely liberating? Why would anyone be looking for an escape, a shoreline to hold onto?
When you are not in love, everything is about being comfortable. When you are in love, comfort is not so important. Some people hope for love. Others give up or live with just a little or just enough. These days, many are proud of their independence. They don’t need love. They enjoy being in control. Everything is planned with nothing left to chance. If chance, luck, and grace are what love is all about, I don’t want it. Anyway, if I love too much, what will people think? Who wants to rattle the heart only to be judged by others in their jealousy and misunderstanding? I would much rather be safe and sure before risking anything. How many people do we know that want life all safe and sound without the tears and joy of love? How do we tell them, “Love is more than worth dying for. Love is worth living for!”
These days, we consume relationships like we do pizza. We can fall in and out of love in a matter of hours or days. Why are we in such a hurry? We don’t need to know everything now. How will it work out? What will we do? The questions are all part of love, part of the heart falling open. We could fall and continue falling. Love has its own safety net in its truth and divine shelter. The human heart can fall in love for a long time. It’s okay. Feelings of nakedness, acceptance, compassion, lust, joy, and disappointment are alright. They are just feelings. Falling in love is letting go of our judgments, our wants, and our agenda. We are beholding something else. Love is the season of Spring that is blooming as long as the heart is beating. Let’s fall into the arms, the faces, and the silence of love. There is so much falling to do.
Don’t we realize our concerns about landing are just our fear of where love is taking us? Is there another journey more spectacular? Some say love is blind. Others insist it is just a lot of chemicals let loose in the brain. Maybe they are right. Maybe we have to be blind before seeing clearly. Maybe those chemicals that take over lovers are the same chemicals traveling through the bodies of our children as they smile and cry and dance their life. Falling in love is falling into all the pain and wonder the heart has stored in its vast treasure. If we don’t fall in love, falling deeply into love’s domain, how will we ever know the true gold and jewels buried within us?
In truth there is no landing. There is only falling into the arms of what life presents. Despite all our resistance, we are all falling into every thought and every feeling...the great silence of love’s body. Let’s celebrate all lovers! Our children are the best examples. If we find someone older, whose eyes show us they are in love, let’s sit at their feet and ask them their secret. How do you fall and keep falling in love?
Valentine’s day should be everyday. Today I celebrate my wife, best friend, partner, and lover for more than twenty years. Ruth, will you be my valentine?
Cover Photo From mulattodiaries.com.