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How can we learn more love? At least four ways; by increasing the intensity, frequency, and duration of the emotion as well as including more unwitting subjects. One day the frequency and duration may combine to form “All of the Time” and then we’ll have arrived. Here's how:
Let's start by imagining all the love by, and for, our parents. The slower the contemplation of each of these things the better. Then let's add to that the love we've had for any pet or pets that have shared our lives with us, and sustain that thought for a while before adding in any and all affection for friendships along the way...
...Now let’s add to this already immense feeling, all of our romantic loves, from our first puppy love until our current, and thereby greatest, love...
...Now let's add all the love for any children. Express and impress these feelings for a while. Then, while still maintaining the thought of all of this love, add in all of the love that we’ve ever felt for all of mankind, and all of the love that we’ve ever felt for God.
Overwhelming? There's more.
Now let's try genuinely loving everyone within a room, or on a bus, for example, or everyone in the city or town, the overall region, the state or province, the country, the continent, and on the entire planet.... ...and then let's contemplate what the loves of those people have been.
Imagine all the love that has ever been felt by human beings. How long can this thought be sustained? A minute? Two minutes? Fifteen? An hour? A day? More? Now add to that all of the love that will be felt by everyone in the future into perpetuity. Add to this all the love ever felt by every living creature (starting with dogs?) and add to this every particle of love that ever will be felt by all creatures in the future until the end of time... and hold that thought. How long can this, now enormous, love be sustained?
But wait. There's more.
Earth is but a drop in the immeasurable cosmic ocean so now let’s multiply this earthly feeling of love exponentially to begin to reflect the all of the actual love existing in the universe in the past, present, and future in every possible world in every possible dimension.
Now double it. How long can we that thought be held? Now double it again… and hold. Now multiply it by a factor of ten... and hold. Multiply this by a hundred, and hold, then a thousand times more, and hold. Now make it the intensity of a sun going supernova... ...then billions of suns going supernova in an ever eternally increasing passion of immeasurably expanding white light.
A mind, once stretched to accept a new thought or idea, never regains its original shape. As our love begins to include every living thing everywhere, with almost unbearable intensity, in our every waking moment, then perhaps we’ll be on our way to learning to love the way that God loves.
Gramercy All the Love in the World
A Zen Parable Charities