Self Love

Self Love

“The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely.”
― C.G. Jung

Last year a friend wrote me an email saying that he was going to give it one more year but if his life did not improve, he was going to end it all! My reaction was concern and anger, concern that there was something I needed to do and anger that this person had confided in me, alone, and placed this burden on my shoulders.

One of my responses was to write a song. As a companion to this newsletter I am offering, for your viewing, a song video called “Self-Love”. Go ahead and take a look and then come back to this article. I`ll be waiting for you!
Self-Love Video

Ok, it`s a bit intense but did you get a sense of this underlying layer of the human condition? SELF-HATRED. By the way,  bagpipe music was originally played for funeral services.

I would like to talk about SELF LOVE but let`s get to it through Self Hatred. I am blessed ( he says idealistically ) to have been raised by a critical father. As much as I tried to counteract this trait, I have inadvertently internalized it in myself. This has come up in my relationships again and again.  It is the reason I went into therapy. And after nearly 60 years of living, criticism still plagues me. What I have concluded is my criticalness of others is just the outer manifestation of my criticalness of myself. I have seen this show up in me as seething self-loathing. Until I`m able to fully feel the energy of this internalized criticism, I will continue to project it onto the world.

Suicide is the epitome of self-criticism but it is only the tip of the iceberg. Humanity is filled with self-hatred. The people who contemplate or commit suicide are only the most obvious symptom of this disease of self-esteem that we all share.

Self Love is self-existent. It`s the self-punishment that is the man-constructed problem. So what can we do? A friend recently shared a practice she said changed her life.
It`s very simple and yet deep and pervasive. Every time you feel bad, say
“ I choose to love and enjoy myself!”.

The real test for me is when doing something like making the video you just watched. When things don`t go smoothly I get angry with myself for being such a dunce. Can I love and enjoy this humiliated simpleton? Can I love and enjoy the frustrated and raging task master who`s trying to get things done in a timely manner? Both at the same time? This is when this practice cuts into the underbelly of my self-hatred.

We all have things about ourselves that we have not been able to love. Self love is a choice, a choice we all have in common.
Let us choose self love!

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Self Love — 4 Comments

  1. Chris so brave of you to address this dynamic in us all and offer wisdom and a message. can we transform our demons into something. Bravo for piercing the shadow and starting this dialogue. phil

  2. Thank you so much Chris. I have struggled with this issue since childhood. I will have periods of time when those “internal critics” seem to settle down and be quiet. But let something happen in my life (such as a break-up, loss of job or other type of rejection) and they come out in full force!

    So it is an ongoing process. Some people say it is a weakness (another criticism) but it takes a lot of strength to combat it. I love what you said about “your demons are your gift”.

    • Thank you for your comment Dale Elena!
      Yes, I know what you mean about the critics lying in wait beneath the surface. I sense that many of us are simply “managing” our self-hatred. And, like you say, it takes only a small event to trigger this demon into appearance. I believe there is a lot of condensed awareness in criticalness and self-hatred. When the criticality can actually turn on itself, and be a witness to the way we punish ourselves, more awareness and self-love become available to us.