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Expanding Our Capacity To Love

What if we came to this world to expand our capacity to love? What if we had to forget where we came from in order to fulfill that quest, like water evaporating from the ocean and traveling to land to nourish soil. What if the painful and traumatic events of our lives are the mechanisms by which we are sent out to our destinations—some of us landing close to shore, others further inland, and others who land far into the desert? Regardless of the distance traveled, we forget our home upon leaving it, some forgetting more than others. But there are signs and beacons that remind us of our home and give us clues as to how to find our way back.

What if each of us, no matter where we've landed, sometimes feel courageous and confident and sometimes feel vulnerable, lost, enraged and terrified? What if our rude, mean, and violent behaviours are actually SOS's—desperate and urgent cries for help that, when translated by the heart, tell us: "I'm scared right now." "I'm terrified that I've ventured too far from home." "I'm in too much pain." "I don't see any beacons." "I can't find the thread of love."

What if this is meant to be a collective mission in which we help each other translate our SOS's and we help each other cry out more clearly and vulnerably, and less violently? And what if we can become brighter and brighter beacons for each other and find our way together.

I'm a fan of compassion, courage, and collaboration, so I like to make sense of things in ways that call forth those qualities. However, if my metaphysical hypothesis of the human condition doesn't work for you, we can keep it to the facts. There is plenty of science that proves that trauma and emotionally painful events inhibit our capacity to love and lead us to behave less kindly, and more desperately, hurtfully and violently. Nonviolent Communication, Attachment Theory, and Interpersonal Neurobiology help us understand what leads us to use such violent and hurtful SOS's. Interpersonal Neurobiology shows us that we can change our brains and we can help each other develop neural networks for peace and connection and disconnect neural networks used for unhealthy or painful behaviors and actions. The Nonviolent Communication practice of empathy is one of the beacons we can use to guide each other back home.

Come share this peace with me I can hear your every need Tongue twisted, your lips missed it But I caught it anyway And then we fade into the space between I can't wait to share this dream with you

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