Without any ONE of them, a relationship is on rocky ground. However, before we can GIVE or RECEIVE any of them we must first know what they are, learn how to recognise them and how to express them. Most of all we must learn to honour and respect them.
Easy to have when all is going well, not so easy when you are faced with trials and strife. At a time when we are at our weakest, is when faith needs to be at it’s strongest. Our first thought when things are going wrong is ‘what can I do to change it?’ We use our skills, knowledge and our confidence in our own ability to make things different. Often making things worse, digging a bigger hole for ourselves. For those with a spiritual faith, it can get shaky at this point. It is at this point, that you will hear the staunch believer ask ‘why are you putting me through this’, ‘what have I done to deserve this?’ It is now that the believer will count the deeds they have done and question if it was for nothing. This is also where those that meditate… put their woes in a box, leave it at the bottom of a mountain/steps etc. and watch the angels take it away… where the faithful kneel in prayer and place their woes at the feet of God, Mohammed, Jah, Buddah… and rise with a knowing… all will be well, this is just a phase!
Without Faith in something, hard times can be VERY hard.
Such a fragile practice. Given tentatively, broken easily, often times irrevocable.
To be able to trust, one has to learn how to trust. Our first experience of trust comes very early on in our lives. Erikson and Freud say that Trust is first built between birth and walking or approximately 18mths old. They tell us of the result in our personality and character, if we do not complete these stages positively. If trust is fundamental to humans to the point that we learn it so early, it stands to reason that we will be building on what we’ve learned as we get older. If we start with good experiences of trust, then we will continue to build on that, if we don’t we continue to be mistrustful. If our trust is broken in early years, we will guard ourselves from that hurt in later life and develop strategies to safeguard our feelings. Hence, having to earn trust. Consistency in NOT hurting us. As soon as that consistency is interrupted… it’s back to square one, if at all; and affecting future relationships.
If we are fortunate to only have good experiences during our formative years… we are more likely to trust freely, and the effects of having that trust broken may not be so devastating. We may be more likely to direct our mistrust to the source rather than to all reflections of the source.
Without doubt, the hardest thing to do, is to love unconditionally. Nelson Mandella is quoted to have said
love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite. Mr. Mandella, is a humanitarian, and we can debate whether loving the unlovely is a reasonable concept.
For some not only is it reasonable, there is no other way. Much like Faith, it’s easy to love someone when things are good or when they are loving you. It’s when they stop loving you, or worse, when they choose to cause you hurt, that love is at it’s best. When love is at it’s most powerful. We may choose to remove ourselves from the source of the hurt in order to retain some semblance of sanity or safety. But we don’t have to remove the love. This is not an easy concept to grasp, nor is it easy to practice, but to be able to do so, brings a peace and contentment that only LOVE can bring.