Ego & Self-Love

There’s a nasty rumor going around that loving yourself is some kind of conceited, selfish and egotistical act. This couldn’t be further from the truth, but it all depends on your definition of love.

“I love these shoes!” and “I love my new haircut!” are good examples of how we misuse the word love.  It’s a cultural and social thing, but it also distorts our perceptions as we allow this to become part of our psyche and mental landscape.

Truly loving yourself means something vastly different than making an impulse buy that gives you a quick rush, or eating an indulgent dessert because you worked hard and you ‘deserve’ it.

Real, true love comes from deep down in the soul, not from the ego. The soul speaks the language of encouragement and growth, not satisfying earthly desires with earthly pleasures. That’s a whole other blog!

When you love yourself, you don’t allow yourself to be treated unkindly by others or by yourself! Eating that indulgent dessert isn’t being loving to yourself, and neither is spending money impulsively because it momentarily makes you feel good. Loving yourself means taking time and care in the things that you do for yourself and for others.

One way to love yourself is to prepare your food from scratch, infusing it with love and care throughout the preparation. I, personally, feel great joy as I’m preparing my fruits and veggies for juicing. I look at each one and marvel at the miracle that it sprouted up from the ground without any effort on my part at all.  I silently give thanks for these gifts given to me by the earth and the sun. Thinking these loving thoughts brings about a certain energy. As you take in the vitamins and nutrients from your food, you are not just eating it, you are communing with the forces that created both you and the living nourishment you are taking in.

As I always say- the voice of the divine and its messages can be found all around us. Whenever I ponder a thought and give it focus, inevitably the answers appear around me.  Today, I decided to give a listen to the audiobook, “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho. In the first few minutes, the author recounts the story of Narcissus.  “Ahhh.. self love and the ego”, I thought, remembering my thoughts regarding this very subject as of late.  The voice of Jeremy Irons brought some drama to the story of Narcissus, explaining that he had loved his own reflection so much, he fell into the water and drowned. Later, a flower appeared where this occurred and it was named for Narcissus. At first glance, this is an extreme form of the love of self that comes from the ego. But the story doesn’t end there. It goes on to explain that the pond where he drowned had transformed from freshwater into salt water because it wept for the loss of Narcissus.  The forest nymphs assumed that the pond was saddened at the loss of such a beautiful creature, and were surprised to learn that the pond never noticed if Narcissus was beautiful. The water wept because it missed seeing its own reflection in Narcissus’ eyes.

So what was the message? If we are all seeing our own reflection in those around us, then anything we do for another, we do for ourselves.  This concept is thrown around a lot with very little explanation.  I first heard this in Catholic School, in the book of Matthew, chapter 25.

‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

It is loving to perform small acts of kindness such as holding the door open for someone, but it’s also a loving act for yourself. We tend to see in others, the things that we recognize in ourselves, and when we see that need in someone and respond lovingly we are really loving ourselves.

So make it a daily practice to commit random acts of kindness. They aren’t just good for others, they are food for your soul!

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~ by healingstarspirit on November 4, 2011.

One Response to “Ego & Self-Love”

  1. so true! wonderful blogpost Nicole! Thanks for sharing it with us!

    Like

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