If you want to listen to any of Eric Butterworth’s amazing talks, you can access many of them at TruthUnity.net. In fact, if you subscribe to the TruthUnity newsletter, Mark Hicks will email them to you regularly. Cyndi and I really enjoy listening to them because of the absolute clarity in which Butterworth communicates Unity principles and ideals.
I will tell you, however, that as I’ve been reading through books written by various Unity authors, I find the topic of love less frequently used than I would have expected. And it’s not that the idea of Divine Love is not within Unity teachings. No, as I go through my classes at Unity Worldwide Ministries, I sometimes feel as though we make the spiritual journey more complicated, more wordy, more esoteric than we should.
I completely understand that we each have our individual approaches to spiritual fulfillment. No two people will arrive at a higher spiritual experience by the exact same path. We are each at different levels of consciousness, we have had different experiences with spirituality, and we continue to live in a mortal reality that affects how we move along our pathway to oneness.
However, I personally think we could make the path just a bit easier and much more impactful if we simplify the goal. The easier it is for us to realize that for which we strive, the easier for us to measure our progress, wouldn’t you agree?
And, the other reason to make the pathway clearer is so that we can truly affect the world around us in profound and immediate ways.
Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I am no tenured theologian. I have not been to seminary yet, nor have I read all the books on metaphysics, new thought, christianity, and so on. I really don’t even think I could do all that in a 100 lifetimes!
I only know what I experience, and recently I experienced a bit of clarity on Divine Idea.
Paul Hasselbeck and others in Unity write that the trinity of Unity is Mind-Idea-Expression. It’s our metaphysical way of understanding the Father-Son-Holy Spirit trinity of mainstream Christianity. God is Divine Mind that create Divine Ideas, which, as our Christ nature, are expressed in us and in our world.
But as many will try to list out Divine Ideas, they come up with terms like justice, beauty, equality, diversity, etc. And while I could not argue that these are not worthy attributes to which mankind should aspire, they leave a huge room for subjectivity. What is justice, for instance? We have a Supreme Court of nine well-scholared, reputable jurists who very seldom agree on any interpretation of the Constitution.
What about beauty? Isn’t that in the eye of the beholder? Mankind’s idea of equality is certainly fluid and ever-changing, as well. If any one of us tries to determine the absolute Divine Idea of any of these, we’re bound to be more subjective than objective.
But, for me, the very one, singular Idea for which I could not find any subjectivity is that of Divine Love.
We all know intuitively what the Love of God means. I think we can also agree that there is no wiggle-room for interpreting what it is or what it looks like in our existence. The Divine Idea of Love is, for me, the root of everything we do, everything we experience, and everything for which we strive.
I could be found to be incorrect here, but, just for a moment, contemplate anything going on in your life or in this world. I think that without much digging you could find how the presence or absence of Divine Love, expressed through us or missing in us, is the root cause of whatever you’re contemplating.
If we’re angry, we’re not loving others or ourselves. If we’re afraid, then we are not realizing that God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son – us – and that by believing in that Son of God, we have eternal life. Love yourself the way God loves you, and you have nothing to fear.
I have deeply tried to realize a single aspect of humanity for which the absence or presence of Love is not the cause.
Love, Divine Love at its highest expression, can cure anything. I truly believe that.
And here’s the really cool part. It’s free. It’s immediately available. I mean immediately! I know you could, if you wanted to, simply close your eyes and feel the absolute love of God wash over you.
And, as they say, “But wait, there’s more!” This love that you can feel can be expressed. It can be shared. In fact, if you want to receive love from others, then you first have to give it. And you give it by seeing it in other people.
If you see someone today or tomorrow that makes you feel threatened or angry or uncomfortable in any way, look into their heart area and imagine a dim, but steady light glowing just behind their breast bone. Know that they have the very same Holy light that shines in your chest right now.
When you can see that light in others, it will glow a bit brighter and you’ll immediately see a change in that person. When you see that light – and I’m speaking from personal experience here – you will see that person evolve into a more loving person. It might not be a huge change, and it might not be permanent, but it’s moving them in the right direction. And, more importantly, their light makes yours shine even brighter.
Back in January, I remember hearing on the news some talk about a viral outbreak in China. There was some alarm or else we would not be hearing about it, but for most of us, that was happening in China, a world away.
Here we are less than 5 months later and over 4 million people in the world are infected and thousands are transitioning each day. The ability of a single, microscopic organism to replicate and spread so rapidly is frightening and astonishing.
And yet, we’re missing the opportunity this epidemic is teaching us: that we can spread whatever we want in like fashion, with similar speed and penetration, too. I always like trying to find the positive in a situation and despite the tremendous hardships and grief this pandemic is causing, we can still find incredible uplift and hope.
One aspect of this crisis that warms me is the fact that we are finally honoring the real heros in our lives. We don’t thrive because of Hollywood actors, social influencers, or sports celebrities. We survive and grow because of our teachers, our medical professionals, and the millions of hard-working people who deliver and stock our shelves, tend to our pets, and transport us in buses and trains. Finally we are recognizing the real heros of society instead of made-up personas who only usurp our imaginations.
Because of this, we are beginning to wake up, I believe. We are growing to see within us what is the most important aspects of our lives. Those with children at home are treasuring the gifts provided by teachers and appreciating more what teachers do each and every day. We are all taking stock of what we really need to live. Cyndi and I have revised our diets, our exercise routines, and our purchasing habits because we have paused to reassess that which is most important to us.
But all our individual introspections are not enough, folks. Even when we can feel and see and hear the Holy Spirit in our meditations and prayers, it is not enough. We cannot change the world for the better, defeat this virus, and uplift those in need by sheltering our minds.
Being in quarantine does not mean we cannot get outside of our minds. It does not mean we cannot share. It does not mean we cannot infect.
Yes, infect. Infect others with Love.
Just for a moment, let’s consider Love as a virus. It’s spread by sharing with others, but not just by overt actions such as telling someone you love them. No, for the Love virus to spread we have to infect the other person by seeing the love in them. By fueling their heart-light to shine brighter. And if it shines brighter, it will fuel other heart-lights.
Think of this: you love one other person so much that they begin to love more. They share their love with someone else and so forth. It is very possible that if we stop with all the anger and the worry and the grief and begin to share our love, we could infect the world.
Too ambitious? I don’t think so. Recall that Jesus started with 12 devotees and ended up infecting billions and billions. Just 12. About half the number of people watching this message live today.
If everyone watching right now were to single out one other person each day, connected with them – even on Zoom – in a very heart-felt, loving way, I believe we could infect the world.
If Kim Kardasian can go viral with booty pics and Taylor Swift can disrupt the Internet with a single tweet, than isn’t it about time we disrupted the world with love?
I’d like to challenge each of you to infect one other person each day for a week. Let them know what you’re doing; tell them that you love them and would like for them to connect and love others in like fashion. Encourage others to find something to love about someone else.
We could go viral with this. And, we’re going to help. We’re going to be posting a series of Facebook and Instagram posts about spreading love that we encourage you to share on your social networks. You’ll find them beginning today on the Unity of Lake Travis facebook and instagram accounts. Share them, and share them often.
You see, that’s what our way-shower did some 2,000 years ago. He went from city-to-city, village-to-village sharing nothing but love. Everything He did was driven by his understanding of Divine Love. That God loves us without fail and without reservation.
This was not how God was seen back then. People felt a need to gain favor with God. You had to honor political and religious leaders, too. The Grace of God was not something readily available to everyone.
Just imagine if our government today said that we owed an involuntary allegiance to leaders. What if those we admired were centered on material wealth and gain? What if we lived in a world where people were judged by their ability to take from others and the weak were ridiculed? What if we considered some people more valuable than others?
That is our world today, isn’t it? As I said to you before, this pandemic is of our own making. God didn’t unleash this on us; we did it ourselves. But not to punish us: to wake us up! This “reset” as I call it is not a call to arms, a call to hate, a call to fear. It is a call to love. To love ourselves as the child of God and, as importantly, to love all others as the child of God.
We can do that, you and I. We can answer this call and begin loving everyone in our lives. Even the casual contact in the grocery store. Even the person delivering your prescriptions. Even yourself.
Don’t grieve and fret. That only brings into your reality that which is not of the highest good. Begin spreading love and you’ll very quickly and powerfully see a better life. A transformed life. A life worth sharing right now.
And by taking our love viral, we can overcome anything in our path and move more quickly into our true Spiritual Self.