I have found, through experience, that people practice conditional love. I have found that conditional love is not love at all. It is control. How do I know that?
I know that conditional love is control because I have seen people use conditional love which is so-called love being given or taken away based on certain criteria that must be present for the love to be given and when those criteria are not met, bye, bye love. Conditional. I do not practice conditional love, never have. What do I practice and why does it matter?
I practice limitless love as discussed in the four Brahmaviharas which I credit from the article “Beginner’s Mind, Buddhism by the Numbers” in the March 2019 edition of Lion’s Roar magazine. Now, how do I practice this on a daily basis and make it real? I practice four “prized emotions that give me a framework to cultivate positive behaviors and minimize harmful ones. They are called the ‘divine abodes’ because they are the mindstates in which all the enlightened reside. They are also known as the ‘four immeasurables’ or ‘four limitless ones’ because they represent love and goodwill to all sentient beings without limit.” These emotions have taught me the real value of life-to love unconditionally for I have found love to hold no grievances.They are:
3. Sympathetic joy.
I have found, along with Buddhist teacher Ayya Khema that these four Brahavharas are “the only emotions worth having. By cultivating the four immeasurables, you not only develop limitless love but you also undo the ‘near enemies’ of indifference, pity, envy and jealousy.”
I bring these four emotions of love to mind every day to renew my loving connection with others. I stay mindful in the practice and state of being of limitless love for myself and others. I do not practice conditional love which is mindless. Limitless love is as limitless as space and I am a limitless being.