Sunday, January 14, 2018
What can you give to a little child, an infant? They don't want all the stuff and baubles you buy. They are not initially into toys. Someone said that what an infant wants is love, and not love that expects to get something but rather disinterested love. It means a love that is a gift of self. It is all that the child can really receive. Some people will show love to a child that is full of self-interest. The adult wants or expects the infant to respond in a certain way. When the infant does not, the adult might get angry, upset, and even violent. This is one-sided love, your side, not the infant's side. The infant is a complete "receiver." Now, can we love older people in just the same way? How do you love your forgetful, physically and mentally crumbling elder parent? How do you love someone who is so emotionally debilitated that they cannot love back? There is an infant in all of us that wants to sometimes be complete receivers of unconditional love. I think this is a part of the contemplative experience. Maybe it is part of married love. You would have to tell me.