How Crazy is That?

by Joel Levin

I participated in the Livingness One Workshop run by Universal Medicine last weekend. The workshop explored at its simplest level, how we can live from our essence.

In small groups we explored the presented possibility that life has two possible directions along a single continuum…

One direction is our glory, our divinity, our amazing light. That direction remains ever-an-option for all to take. That direction is love, it is joy; it is our true expression.

And so the other direction can only start with the pain of separating from that love – it can only start with a hurt. This means that each step is looking to either cover up that hurt, or alleviate it. For some, this comes in the form of different lifestyle choices that are used as distractions – some use life’s dramas to pile one hurt on top of another; some use food and different drinks to cover all this up… In reality, there are many, many ways we can deny the original choice we made away from love.

The most compelling question presented was WHY? Why would anyone make the choice to go in any direction other than the one that leads to true joy…? And here is the wisdom that struck me…

Love, is love, is love… Love is never withheld, it never asks to be let in, it never offers incentives or expects to be chosen and it certainly doesn’t punish those that don’t choose it (although living outside of love can feel like a punishment, but that is of our own choosing).

The crazy part is that in the choice to NOT be love, we get something in return: it might be pain, hurt and suffering, but it is OUR pain, hurt and suffering (i.e. it’s something we earned and something we can identify with). For example, if I choose to jump off a building and break my leg, my choice brings with it time off, attention and sympathy, that is directed towards me.

Love, on the other hand is free: it doesn’t ask or require you to follow anyone or become anything other than yourself. Love won’t congratulate you for choosing it – it will be there as equally for you now as it also was in those moments that you didn’t choose it. It doesn’t care about race, skin colour, wealth, intelligence or life experience. This means Love can’t be bought, it can’t be earned, only returned to by allowing and accepting ourselves and others as equals, i.e. no identification. With love, we have to surrender the investments we made in our hurts.

This means in a world that can be back to front, the hurt gives us something to own ­– something that is ours. But love offers no special treatment for individuals. Love does offer joy, vitality, freedom and simplicity, but it is offered to all equally without any sense of reward or parade.

It’s a bit like spending your life savings by investing everything you have in a house and realising that it is falling down around you… and then seeing a house down the road that’s got everything you have ever wanted (and more). However, in order to move in, you have to completely leave behind the old house, all the furniture and little knick knacks you used to make the house ‘yours’… and all you can take is you.

How many of us have chosen to live in the house that’s falling down because of how much we have spent on it? HOW CRAZY IS THAT!?

636 thoughts on “How Crazy is That?

  1. We do have an investment in this body, which is far deeper than the analogy you have shared about the house Joel, all we have to do is look at the rising rates of illness and disease. Living in illusion devoid of True Love we will always end up down the road somewhere looking back at the carnage. Living in an empty, love-less shell we have created in the name of doing good and being right because these become “something that is ours” will never work as it is devoid of Love. “With love, we have to surrender the investments we made in our hurts,” good and bad!

      1. You may indeed Greg. The illusion of being in control is a huge one. The truth is we are never a source only ever a vehicle through which a source comes. We choose which source will come through us and thereafter delude ourselves that we are in control.

  2. Holding onto hurts identify us as being an individual, indulging in the illusion of life and keeping us away from the true love where we come from and that is accessible to us more than ever before. At the end of the day it is a simple choice we make- to live from our hearts and let the love flow as a divine reflection of the universe.

  3. I love the house analogy. What struck me reading this was how often do we completely consciously have conversations with the question ‘Why am I not choosing love?’ or ‘Why are you not choosing love?’ and then without going into guilt, blame or trying to make excuses of why we are not we instead simply allow ourselves to completely feel this. I reckon this would make a huge difference because it immediately offers us or another a space to feel all that we are and that is innately there and then to feel all that we are not choosing which is not aligned to this … Love.

  4. It is crazy – especially because love is who we are and the separation we have gone to in the depth and extent is quite concerning… And we are continuing the path of destruction until we stand in the love that we are – chosen by our very own will.

  5. ” One direction is our glory, our divinity, our amazing light. That direction remains ever-an-option for all to take. That direction is love, it is joy; it is our true expression.” The other direction is away from this and anything away from this must be pain, hurt, non-joy, resentment, bitterness and self-hurt and more. How crazy is that, but we choose it and sometimes constantly.

  6. “Why would anyone make the choice to go in any direction other than the one that leads to true joy…?” Realising that you have made and continue to make steps away from true joy is the first move towards returning to love.

  7. It is crazy to live in a house we know will fall down because of how much we have invested in, but understandable, if investments are what we have made important in life, and some much more important than others. But ultimately there will be a time and a chose when we say enough is enough. We may go back and forth for a while, but we will get there one day. Making a choice for ourselves is a lot to appreciate each and every day.

  8. “But love offers no special treatment for individuals. Love does offer joy, vitality, freedom and simplicity, but it is offered to all equally without any sense of reward or parade.” This whole blog is gold Joel. What you have clearly highlighted is that the choice to choose the path of ‘not love’ although apparently nonsensical, is a very deliberate choice to invest in our individuality. So separated are we from the truth that we are magnificent beings before we do anything, that we cling on to any last vestige of what we think identifies us in the world – justifies our place. And yet if we walk away from this and accept the offer of a life of true joy, fulfilment, love, we feel the greatest sense of who we are that we could ever feel. The difference is that in this we hold all others equal and do not try to be better than another.

  9. Joel yet again another golden blog…..I love the house analogy. We grow up with these attachments and yet when we are born we come into this world with nothing except Love and when we die, its not different – we cannot take anything with us except Love.

    I can recall when I lived in the UK I went on many back packing holidays and when I used to pack my rucksack, it was always challenging thinking I need this and I needed that. What was amazing that the things I thought I ‘needed’ were not needed, I lived with out them and in some respect it was kind of going back to basics without the excess baggage…Great sharing.

  10. Who knew that life is so simple, it’s either Love or not with no in between. We complicate the world with many different things and emotions and that way we can’t see how simple it is. When we look at things like this it becomes not many choices but one, the choice to choose the love you truly are and then everything else. The fact that you don’t choose love is also the choice for the ‘other’, as I said there is no in between, it either is or is not. In this we see that there is a constant choice to align to this quality of love and the mere fact of not holding this as a truth is a choice. Love is love and it’s our free will to choose it or not and for me another level of the game is up from reading this article.

  11. The more I surrender to my body and feel all the warmth and love within the more I see that the world is upside down, inside out and completely back to front, but it does make sense. Because to a being that wants to be individual with issues and problems the world has to be set up this way for such desires to be reality.

  12. Love is always there whether we choose it or not. I wonder if that’s why we take it for granted. There’s something very odd going on in the world where we value those things that are hard to get and do not appreciate those that are consistent and simple.

  13. ‘The crazy part is that in the choice to NOT be love, we get something in return: it might be pain, hurt and suffering, but it is OUR pain, hurt and suffering (i.e. it’s something we earned and something we can identify with).’ I have read this before but it truly struck me this time. Do I really want to stay in MY pain or do I surrender to love and stop fixing my problems.

  14. To cover up or to alleviate, it does seem a bit bonkers to live in the tussle of only these two choices when there is the stupendousness of the soul waiting to happen all of the time.

  15. Yes, fully recognize this Joel. I have also spent a life investing in house (my own little world) that kept falling down again and again. And I discovered that I have to make life about love, about people. It is very glorious choice, but goes against the norm that is so known to me. But the known indeed is crazy.

  16. Whenever I see the By Joel Levin on a blog my heart expands and I feel the joy coming that the blog is going to bring me. This writer never lets me down always hitting the nail firmly on the head.

  17. This is brilliant. It exposes the staunch pride of ‘me, myself and I’ that wants to hold on to the hurts as opposed to surrendering to the one thing we long for the most. There is no glamour and fame in love, but my is it glorious, stupendous, amazing and all that there truly ought to be.

  18. When we try to make life work around the hurts that give us recognition and reward, we are stuck in the illusion that we can make or create life to our held ideals. But some time we will come to the understanding that this does not work, as it is not sustainable and starts falling apart from the moment we have created it and that living from our hurts is not it.

  19. This really explains why we create problems and issues: because then we are recognised and noticed we want to stand out. We might say we don’t like it though and would really want true love but even that is a form of individuality – it’s huge and the only way to live true love is simply to indeed live it.

  20. That’s really it, isn’t it, accepting that possibility all that we have invested in isn’t it and that we can let go of all of that and simply come to something much grander, but we have to be willing to let go of all our investments.

  21. We have to leave behind all we’ve created, all our investments, all that effort and yet it’s not true, and all we can take is us … the ultimate surrender is what’s asked and love is there always.

  22. I think I have the same thing with certain behaviours, for example sometimes I feel super small and instead of seeing it as a behaviour I can change or choose, I see it as me or part of me. I reckon we hold onto way more stuff than we need rather than experimenting with a different way.

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