Looking Through the Eyes of Love

This is the image of two hands coming together with the sky in the background making the shape of a heart

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Have you ever had times when every one and every thing is agitating you and you feel like what you most need is a vacation from people in general?

 

On a typical day, we all have an infinite number of opportunities to react to situations that trigger our own fears and insecurities. The driver who suddenly cuts in front of your car may spark you to react with an angry gesture; a work associate who adamantly disagrees with you may cause you to be overtly defensive of your own point of view; being on the receiving end of someone hurling cruel words may cause you to retaliate with a vengeful response; or experiencing a food server with a negative attitude may cause you to respond in an unkind, judgmental manner.

 

When you react to someone else’s fearful words and actions with the same defensive energy, you are perpetuating separation and adding to the negative energy of the situation.  This ultimately results in everyone’s feelings being hurt, as well as a serious breakdown in communication.  When you find yourself in a reactive mode and feeling pulled into other people’s dramas, it is a sure sign that it is time to expand your perspectives to focus on more than just your own personal reality.

 

Perspective is the overall viewpoint from which we see our world. We don’t actually see our perspectives.  We look at life through our perspectives, much the same as we see through a pair of eyeglasses. While we cannot control everything that happens in our lives, each of us is responsible for choosing how we want to interpret and respond to life events and situations.  If we change one letter in the spelling of the word responsible–to responseABLE–we are reminded that we are able to choose our responses to life. Since our responses are based on our perspectives, we are each able to change how we experience life in an instant by changing the lens through which we view our life experiences.  Ultimately, we have a choice:  We can view life from the perspective of fear, which results in mindlessly and defensively reacting to the negative energy of people and situations; or we can learn and grow from every person we meet and every situation we encounter by changing our view of life to see through the eyes of love.

 

Looking through the eyes of love is a conscious choice to perceive people and their situations with compassion and understanding. When you exercise compassion, you are empathetic because you are able to sense the feelings that are motivating another person’s actions, rather than judging their obvious outward behavior. Rather than focusing only on your own personal situation, compassion enables you to see a situation from the other person’s perspective as well. It is through compassion and understanding that you can resonate with another person’s feelings by remembering that, just like you, every single human being you will ever meet is also experiencing pain, sickness, and loss in their lives. You also begin to stop taking people’s reactions so personally – the way someone acts is a projection of how they feel about themselves – not an evaluation of your self-worth.

 

Choosing to perceive life through compassion and understanding, rather than judgment and defensive reaction, opens us up to a whole new vista of life.  It is like looking through a special pair of eyeglasses that enables you to have an emotional x-ray vision that can see the issues of fear that are motivating someone’s negative and offensive behaviors. The person who cuts in front of your car may be going through a divorce; the work associate who relentlessly argues with you may have a serious mental imbalance; the person who is speaking to you with unkind words may have just lost her job; and the restaurant server who had a negative attitude may have just gone through the loss of a loved one.

 

I experienced the value of perceiving a situation in a compassionate way a couple of years ago when I was waiting in the checkout line of a local grocery store. The cashier appeared to be rude as she haphazardly threw the purchased items into bags and never once looked up to smile or greet any of the customers.  I was fourth in line, and the annoyance and judgment of each person who preceded me intensified as the line progressed forward.  When it was my turn to be waited on, I gently asked a simple question:  “Are you having a difficult day?”  The woman who was cashiering looked up and stared at me, her eyes brimming with tears.  “It is more than a difficult day – I am so upset I can hardly breathe. Today marks the one-year anniversary of the day my daughter was killed in a car crash.  She was only 4 years old.  I don’t know how I can even live through today.”  My heart ached for this woman, and I found myself giving her a long, spontaneous hug.  “Thank you for understanding,” she replied. As I left the grocery store, I was so thankful that I had not judged the cashier and had taken an extra minute to ask her that simple question.

 

When we choose to look at people and situations through the eyes of love, we are acknowledging that we are all emotionally vulnerable and that every one of us is  experiencing tremendous challenges in negotiating our spiritual journey here on earth. Not only are we being kind to others, it is also one of the most self-fulfilling ways to honor our own soul.

 

I welcome you to share ways in which you are aware that your perspective has greatly influenced your relationships with others.

 

Love and Light

 

Sandra

 

7 thoughts on “Looking Through the Eyes of Love

    • Dear Ann: Thank you for your post. I feel grateful to hear
      that this message has inspired you to read it every day. We all need to practice seeing ourselves and others with compassion and kindness. The whole world looks so much more loving from this perspective!
      Love and Light,Sandra

  1. At what point do you sacrifice compassion for self preservation. If someone is continually unhappy with themself and you are feeling the repercussions at what point does it become abusive?

    • Dear Brandy: Compassion does not mean self-sacrifice. It is perhaps best described as an attitude of non judgment and a willingness to accept that every person looks, thinks, and acts differently according to their own unique mental, emotional, and physical make-up, as well as according to their personal experiences and lessons in life. If you are around someone who is treating you in an abusive way, try to remember that the way people act is a reflection of how they feel about themselves, not you. Even in the face of abuse, I encourage you to respond in ways that are motivated by your own self-respect, i.e. avoid the temptation to lower your own vibration by retaliating, remove yourself from the person or situation if possible. If you truly want to see the power of love, try praying for people whom you do not like. You will be surprised as how it clears YOUR energy. And always, always respect yourself!
      Love and Light, Sandra

  2. Sandra,
    Thank you so much for your insight! Reading this brought tears to my eyes because there have been so many times in my life when I was in the cashier’s position. I didn’t lose a child, thank goodness, but maybe I just needed someone to see that I was hurting and needing someone to acknowledge. Most of the time, I keep my feelings inside, but during those times when I have felt absolutely miserable, it has proved particularly difficult to keep from expressing them outwardly. Keeping your insights in mind when interacting with others will help me to analyze my feelings and others and respond in a loving manner. Thanks again for sharing!

    Jonathan

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