I’ve always wondered about the concept of unconditional love. Isn’t it just a set-up for one person to control another? Is there a way for it to be healthy?
The usual statement goes like this, “If you just showed me unconditional love, then everything would be all right.” That is often best translated to, “You have to let me do whatever I want — even if it really hurts you.” It’s a controlling, negative Will statement.
I now have a different idea about unconditional love. Here’s how the idea can work.
In unconditional love the positive life force from the Heart continues to flow between the two people all the time. I know that can be extremely difficult, but please bear with me because when it flows, it doesn’t say that the actions of one are approved of by the other. It’s just that love continues to flow.
Disapproving of what someone does is not a Heart action. It’s a Will action. There’s nothing stopping unconditional love from the Heart even when a person’s Will is trying to cause a change. The
love can continue. The world (especially the two people directly involved) is better off when the Heart and Will both make themselves known.
Let’s look at the other possibilities.
Conditional love is negative energy from the Heart trying to help the Will make a change in another person. It says, “I’ll only love you if you do what I want.” It breaks the connection between the people and makes the recipient of the negative life force from the other’s Heart weaker. The returning negative life force makes the original sender weaker, too. All in all, really ugly.
It is important to understand that loving relationships may include wanting the other person to change. This is especially true in a parent-child relationship. The vital distinction my model of the soul makes is that both love and a request for change can happen at the same time because they come from different parts of the soul.
One of the horrors of our current age is the idea that we have to unconditionally love without asking for harmful actions to stop and healthy actions to increase. When we take unconditional love to mean that everything a person does has to be accepted as all right, it just doesn’t work for either person.
Children — and really all of us — want our loved ones to let us know when we are out of bounds in actions or emotions. If the loved ones don’t let us know, then it feels like they don’t care. It feels like the love isn’t there.
Maybe we could call this conditional Will. The idea would be that the Will is forbidden to act when the person it would be acting on is supposed to be “loved.” It leads to a situation where there is no power and no safety for the person who is blocking his/her own Will. Another idea that doesn’t work.
But here’s an idea that can: Unconditional love combined with unconditional Will gives us a place where we can safely learn and grow by letting us love while setting clear boundaries on the acceptability of other’s actions. Then strong positive Heart life force and Will life force lead to relationships that are healthy, safe, and affirming.
So you can unconditionally love someone and ask him or her to change.