There are many areas in my life I have difficulty accepting. I can’t accept myself for not being able to speak mandarin, I can’t accept myself for making mistakes, I can’t accept failing, I can’t accept myself for being impatient, I can’t accept certain characters and attitudes – there may be countless of them each day. Then there are things out there that I can’t accept – I can’t accept delays in appointments, in services, in queues; I can’t accept imperfection in services, I can’t accept dirtiness – numerous of them. The number of unacceptance is reflecting my inability to love and inability for love to come to my life.
If I don’t learn to start accepting myself, how would I expect to love myself? If I don’t see my own warts and shortcomings, how am I able to love myself unconditionally? If I can’t love myself, surely I can’t love others too. To love myself is to accept who I am and who I am not.
First on the list, which is also the last, is to love myself even when I can’t love myself – love the unloving part of me. Then others will follow naturally. I just need to keep reminding myself this. Whenever I see myself complaining, I look at that complaint lovingly, without identifying and continuing its story. Whenever I felt disapproved, I will lovingly recognize that disapproval – paradoxically when I do that I am already approving myself. One of my teachers recommended me the following technique – whenever I felt disapproved I just need to reverse it by saying I am approved unconditionally – it works! I am not lying to myself, but to see that statement as to mean in an unapproved experience I am approving it unconditionally.
I can’t love myself unconditionally if I don’t stay consciously to my inner callings – the calling for love. All negative expressions are a calling for love. Jealousy, judgments, thwarted desires, upsets, fear, betrayal are all camouflages of my need for love. If I were to listen to the call I would have found love at my front door – but I don’t, simply because I give my attention outward, seeing the world as wrong.
I have been hearing knocks on my inner door but I am afraid to open it. I am too frightened to face what is there for me. I have not known what is beyond the door except to hear the plea of the calling. The only way I knew how to face that knock is to escape via the back door, escaping from the reality of what is. That back door is my metaphor of complaints. The back door is my scapegoat. I will keep returning to that back door whenever I am been threatened. It is only when I take the courage to face the call of the front door knocking that I am starting my journey into accepting love coming into my life. Otherwise love is always out there beyond my reach. Not that I am being deprived from love, but rather I am depriving myself to love. That is the reality.
The back door does not exist. It seemingly gives me a way out, but that way out is actually a cave without an end – I can’t find myself in the darkness unless I turned back towards the entrance where light is awaiting me. There is nothing to run away accept to face and recognize that all the warts are love in disguise.