With Valentine’s day looming, and the shops already full of expensive hearts our minds are encouraged to contemplate love. The first painting (Being Connected) shows the personal aspect still embedded in the earth and in the rhythms of nature. The second(Yearning for the Moon)shows the longing to become whole like the sphere of the moon itself. She is already part of the rhythms and surrendered to something greater. In my book ‘Love in an Age of Uncertainty’ I explore some of the hunderds of kind of love through ancient mythology. I question the current myth that finding the perfect partner is the solution to feelings of aloneness in this Universe, that love replaces religion.
A few years ago a group of us from the Dionysian Underground did a ceremony on Valentines Day of Primrose Hill to honour the Life Force of Eros that we all have all the time. We tore into pieces some over sentimental commercial cards and invoked the goddess Aphrodite with drumming and dancing. Well it made us feel good.
But apart from ‘denouncing’ capitalist commercialism, how does love relate to left politics. In France we have the ‘ socialist’ Hollande combining revelations about his affaire with slightly less socialist economic policies. His attempts at really raising taxes made him very unpopular. Yet the affaire put up his ratings slightly. Can we make any theories from this? After all socialism has been seen as alot less sexy than capitalism.
However there has been a current on the left of honouring love. Che Guevara once famously said ‘At the risk of sounding ridiculous let me say that a revolutionary is guided by great feelings of love’. There can be love for justice and love for the oppressed people. When we are in touch with our core selves as the Marxist Psychoanalyst said, we are naturally loving. He added that we are also angry(hating) at injustice and I would add extreme inequality.
While to get that core place we need to do loads, maybe life times of work on ourselves we can meanwhile practice love under will. The Metta practice from Buddhism is a good example. You bring to mind someone you find easy to love, then youself(not always as easy as it sounds), then someone neutral, perhaps a stranger(you can pracice on public transport or on the street), then its someone you find difficult. You send them loving energy even picturing light going from open doors in your heart to that person. You could say quietly ‘I love you’. Don’t scare anyone by speaking it out loud in public!