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Connecting to others while maintaining a sense of self

Rainer Maria Rilke: "Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest human beings infinite distances continue to exist, a wonderful living side by side can grow up, if they succeed in loving the distance between them which makes it possible for each to see the other whole against the sky."

Alan Watts: "Profound love reveals what other people really are: beings in relation, not in isolation." One such relation is union. Erich Fromm: "Love is union with somebody, or something, outside oneself, under the condition of retaining the separateness and integrity of one's own self." This self-integrity is essential. Maria Lugones: "Love is seen not as fusion and erasure of difference but as incompatible with them [fusion and erasure of difference]." Connection leads to love, and love indicates this connection. James Redfield: "I consider love a barometer for my own connection." This is the thing that must be done: Fritz Buri: "The task of theology is not to prove that God is love but to show that love constitutes the fulfillment of human existence."

This can be found and it can be lived: given and received.

Charlie Morris:

"It is important to know though, primarily, that unconditional love isn’t rare. It is just that it is, as of yet, something that humans are rarely able to experience and share with one another. Unconditional love is the basis of all reality. Existence is love itself. But when you can’t experience this first hand, and something in you aches for it...and you are still not sure what it is that you are searching for...you will find yourself in the 'depression'. And thank God for that. Thank God for the knowing that something isn’t quite right with the world. Without the depression, you would never try to climb out and into a new way of living. And if you never fall into the depression, you are either on the side of not knowing you cannot love...or trying really hard to receive love from people who are not capable of offering it."

Catullus: "sis in amore potens" (may you be capable of love).

Sources

Rainer Maria Rilke, "Letters," quoted by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Wherever You Go, There You Are, p 255.

Alan Watts, Nature, Man, and Woman, p 199.

Erich Fromm, The Sane Society, 1955. Quoted in Ray Billington. Religion Without God. Routledge: New York, 2002. p 106.

Maria Lugones, "Playfulness, 'World-Travelling,' and Loving Perception," Hypatia 2, no 2 (Summer 1987):3. Quoted in "The Power and the Promise of Ecological Feminism," by Karen J. Warren, in Ecological Feminist Philosophies edited by Karen J. Warren. Indiana University Press, 1996.

James Redfield, quoted in "The Evolution Revolution." Interview by Anne A. Simpkinson. Copyright (c) 2002 Beliefnet, Inc.

Fritz Buri. How Can We Still Speak Responsibly of God? Translated by Chary D. Hardwick. Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1968. p 40.

"'Depression'—Revised." Charlie Morris. Feb. 10, 2012. Accessed Feb. 11, 2012.

Catullus, Poem C

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