“Love is my religion”… often preached, not often practiced. I know that’s a gutsy claim to make, but quite honestly, I feel comfortable saying it. I’m a huge believer in the “give love always” approach to life – even if it means giving love to someone you don’t feel deserves it. Who am I to say if someone deserves love, or not? I’m not; I’m only responsible for my own actions, not theirs. Now don’t get me wrong, giving love always is extremely difficult to do, especially if I feel someone has done “wrong”, but I’m trying my hardest to hold true to my mantra: “love is my religion”. If more people gave love and truly felt that love was their religion, there would be a lot less hate.
There’s a lot of hate in the world, a lot of hateful acts are performed daily, and somehow along the way, the eye for an eye reaction has grown to be considered normal and acceptable. What if, instead, when some hateful act is performed, love is given in return? I’m not saying go out and praise the wrongdoers in life, but there are many ways to give out love, instead of hate. It’s a simple example, but sometimes small and simple is the best way to start… Pretend you’re at the grocery store and the person at the checkout line is just in a fowl mood. As the consumer, you have a few reactions you can take to this person: you can ignore them and continue to text or talk on the phone to avoid contact (and potentially make them feel worse – you don’t know why he or she is in a bad mood); you can act extremely rude in return, letting them know how rude you think he or she is; or you can be kind and warm and tell that person to have a good day, potentially causing him or her to smile and maybe actually have a better day. Like I said, the example is simple, but I’m sure you see my point.
My challenge to all of you reading is to truly adopt the religion of love.
Be kind always.
Smile at the person with the bitter face walking down the sidewalk.
Compliment someone if you genuinely like something about him or her, even if you don’t know the person.
Say hi and have a nice day to the people in need living on the streets, instead of avoiding them.
Hold a door.
Say thank you.
Hang up your phone if you’re going to interact with a store clerk.
Let someone in who’s trying to turn into the line of traffic you’re in.
Small acts can lead to big movements.
Hate breeds more hate and love breeds more love.
As Deepak Chopra said, “every time you are tempted to act in the same old way, ask if you want to be a prisoner of the past or a pioneer of the future”. Be a pioneer. Breed more love. Change the world for our future generations.
With Peace and Love,
Alix Terpos PT, DPT