The Real Deal on Valentine’s Day
By Don Ingwerson
Valentine’s Day comes and goes with a flurry of cards, flowers, chocolates, and jewelry.
But is that all there is to love?
Of course not! Sure, these all are all sweet symbols designed to express our love. But our hearts hunger for more depth. Instead we are bombarded with product advertisements that only superficially echo the true nature of our love and support for colleagues, friends, and family.
But Valentine’s Day should – and does – offer us an opportunity to reflect on something more than just a one-dimensional celebration of the power of love.
After all, love has so many dimensions. For instance, what about the love that heals?
Years ago I had the privilege of serving as a prison chaplain and so I’m always heartened to hear prison chaplain stories and the different ways this work serves to address some basic human needs. Beyond the clothing, food, or shelter, that inmates need, this chaplaincy work supplies them with a spiritual connection that can help them find new meaning in life through this love. And that’s also what happened to both prisoners and distressed dogs who were videotaped being brought together in a program called Dogs on the Inside. The effect on both the mistreated and homeless dogs and the distrustful prisoners was amazing. Dogs and inmates were able to learn to trust and overcome past experiences, and when they did so their demeanor and behavior noticeably softened and changed.
There – in prison – the healing and transforming power of love was found.
This power of love has a surprising connection to the world of science. Most view science as analytical answers and measurable facts, while love’s power is by its very nature intangible and unquantifiable. But Albert Einstein, one of the most forward thinking scientists who ever lived, disagreed. According to letters released by Einstein’s daughter Lieserl, Einstein once wrote, “When I proposed the theory of relativity, very few understood me, and what I will reveal now to transmit to mankind will also collide with misunderstanding and prejudice in the world. …There is an extremely powerful force that, so far, science has not found a formal explanation to, it is a force that includes and governs all others, and is even behind any phenomenon operating in the universe and has not yet been identified by us. This universal force is love….Love is God and God is love.”
This echoes a powerful idea clarified by Mary Baker Eddy, author of a time-tested book on prayer-based healing, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and founder of Christian Science: “God is Love. More than this we cannot ask, higher we cannot look, farther we cannot go.”
Everyone benefits if we approach the idea of love – including this day of love – with a more spiritual sense of what it means to care. There will be more harmony and more joy as a result. Because love is God it is the most potent force on earth. Divine love is more powerful than every kind of “prison sentence” that anyone may find themselves in.
What a healing gift to give to yourself and all you meet this Valentine’s Day and every day of the year!
Don Ingwerson lives in Laguna Beach with his wife and they are both Christian Science practitioners. Don blogs on health and spirituality at www.csinsocal.com.