“One is the loneliest number that you’ll ever know…” I have always loved that song. Probably most of my single friends would agree with that sentiment! But while One is the loneliest, it can also be the fullest and most complete. “One Love, One Heart, One Life…” Another song with a different take on things…we can be one, alone or one, together. That makes a big difference!
The common quest for relationships gets me thinking often about One-ness. Can we be a whole person, at One with ourselves, with God, the Universe if we don’t have a partner? I know plenty of married people who still feel alone. I look at my own marriage, at the types of relationships portrayed in movies and books (throughout time), at friendships, at our incessant longing for connectedness…is it because through these relationships we have a relativity of sorts? Like in Jerry Maguire—are we just looking for another person to “complete us?”
That particular line has never set well with me. I have always thought we need to be two wholes coming together to create something new—like ingredients. I’m flour, you are eggs: together we make dough (or better yet, pizza dough). Yet…the more I play that phrase in my head the more it makes sense to me. I can’t help but extend beyond our pairings. I think of the tributaries of a river—all rivers, one source; the blood vessels in our body are really one continuous vessel that take on different properties depending on their location; the individual stars in the sky completing a solar system. And I remind myself that we are all pieces of yarn in the same woven rug, working together to create a beautiful pattern. The metaphors abound! Look around you—is anything really totally independent of anything else? Or better yet—take all of that away. Close your eyes and imagine it is only you and there is nothing else…if we forget what we think and know and feel and see what is left?
“Yoga tells us that what is left is in essence the only thing worth having: a connection to the source of our very aliveness.” (Donna Farhi)
How do we connect to that “aliveness?” What are things that make us feel ALIVE!? Laughter! Movement! Breathing! Emotion! Hugging! SEX! Other living things! It’s all entirely human and at the same time entirely divine. It’s all about perspective, right? You can look through a huge telescope and see one star, or you can lie on your back in a field and see the sky. You can view yourself on a solo journey or imagine hovering above a world of little ants. We learn from both perspectives the same thing—I am small; this world is big. I am NOT ALONE. BINGO! Like a tiny gear in a machine—what I give contributes to what is produced. Thusly, what I hold back, takes away. It’s not as convenient as contributing when I feel like it, indulging in self-pity when I don’t—but it’s time we realize this as a universal truth.
When we view our world from a place of connectedness, we take on the responsibilities of our due worth. We know that we have a job to complete the rug of the Universe. Not only that, but seeing ourselves as a whole ingredient, a vital and important part of another whole, we understand that failing to give compassion, generosity, understanding, love, nurturing, or happiness to others is really depleting ourselves from these things. “when there is a sense of unity, who is there to steal from but ourselves?” (D.F.)
Whether you read the Bible or Bhavagad Gita—we are assured that our connection to the Universe (God) has always and will always exist, that it transcends even our death. Have you watched Long Island Medium!? Death cannot hold us back from telling our loved ones we miss them! When we look into ourselves, we will always find this connection and we will always reflect it. This linked feeling hums within us, giving us that ache for healthy relationships and vital whole experiences. We can take a second to stop feeling so separate, to know instead that we are not alone, that we cannot fail or fall when others succeed (because it is a shared success, there is enough for all of us). This helps us to be BRAVE. In this way we do complete each other, don’t we?
“It takes courage to follow your heart and intuition and let them shape your life. Freedom from the shackles of attachment and fear empowers you to take full advantage of the limited and precious time you have to create the life that your heart truly longs for. …’only the fearless are truly alive’ “ (Rod Stryker)
SO…If the only thing worth having is a connection to our aliveness, and only the fearless are truly alive, then we can conclude we must have courage to accept and embrace all that makes us human, including that innate desire to connect. If we want to truly live a whole, meaningful life (Married or not!), we must acknowledge our interdependence on our connection to each other and become ONE.
Today especially, this extends beyond the bubble of our daily experience. In a world full of violence and tragedy it becomes easy to feel separate--to think of it as “Us vs. Them.” But remember the night sky, think of the woven rug…we are all the same. Their pain is our pain. When they break, we all suffer. It’s important to respect and appreciate that we are pieces of this puzzle—but so are “they.” Can you take a moment to connect to that today? Can you not only bear witness to the suffering parts of the world that seem so far away but actually, vulnerably, humbly, reach out? To be One, if only for two minutes?
Healing Meditation: Take a moment and set the intention to feel connected. Sit quietly and breathe. Feel your inner space. Just breathe and feel the inner space of your body. Gradually, move outward and feel the actual space of your body, then the space around your body, then the space of the room. Take your time, continuing to breathe and extend your awareness. Stay present and grounded. As you breathe calmly and reach out with your energy, conjure feelings of light and peace and healing. Feel your heart radiate pure love. Allow this love, like light or a rainbow to grow and build—larger and larger, extending over this city, state, country…feel the light and love in your heart reach all the way over to Syria. Feel it surrounding those in need, warming them, embracing them. Peacefully absorb and diminish their feelings of rage and fear as you eminate love. Do this for several minutes.