Love as a Spiritual Practice

hearts

Image Description: Three hearts carved from wood are hanging on wires like a mobile. One is red, one is orange, and one is green.

This summer, the Michigan Nones and Dones community is exploring spiritual values and practices, and we’re applying them to commitments of anti-racism. We’re also asking ourselves: As we think about our religious/spiritual upbringing, what did we learn about these values? What do we want to shed? What do we want to retain? What do we want to deepen or take on in a new way?

In the final topic of the series, we recently held a conversation about the spiritual practice of love. We asked, “How is love a spiritual practice?”

With permission, I am sharing our answers.

As a spiritual practice, love is…

1) something that’s always possible,
2) something that can be chosen repeatedly,
3) an expansive vision of neighborliness,
4) the greatest aim of our living,
5) care and support for oneself, alongside others,
6) a choice to be in relationship intentionally,
7) a mindset of being connected,
8) an extension of the spiritual toward others,
9) shared relatedness and a sense of connection to all people,
10) care for the physical,
11) an experience that can be messy,
12) intimacy instead of loneliness,
13) an experience of which we are all worthy of receiving,
14) a flow of being, receiving, and doing,
15) something that needs to be integral to who we are and how we interact with people,
16) a flow we desire coming in and out of our life,
17) something we enact,
18) the desire to understand another,
19) a struggle in accepting people exactly for who they are,
20) willingness to sit in discomfort and struggle with the biases and forms of systemic injustice that are ingrained and internalized inside ourselves.

What would you add?

Renee Roederer

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