By Adam J. Pearson
For a recorded reading of this poem, feel free to listen here:
Love affirms connection;
Fear sees separation;
Love accepts in safety;
Fear trembles, insecure.
The deeper I love without conditions,
Without requiring anything in return,
The safer I feel,
And the more fearless.
I cannot offer safety to others
If I myself feel unsafe,
But when I discover within
A security that cannot be threatened,
Then I myself become a refuge
And safe haven.
I cannot make anyone else responsible
For my own love, joy, and peace,
For to do so is to give them a burden
That is not theirs to carry.
Instead, I look within to find these things
Unconditionally present within me,
For what I find within is secure within,
And what depends on fleeting conditions
Itself is fleeting and impermanent.
When I feel abundant,
I pour out that abundance to others.
When I feel lacking,
I drain others of what I feel I lack.
Therefore, because I want to be happy,
And offer happiness to others,
I cultivate an abundance of joy within.
Because I want to be peaceful,
And offer peace to others,
I reveal an abundance of peace within.
And because I want to be loved,
And offer love to others,
I inflame an abundance of love within.
I cannot receive
What I do not got give,
And I cannot give
What I have not found within.
What I find within,
I can share without fear of loss,
For unconditional love
Is not lost by being shared;
Is not diminished by being offered,
And unconditional peace
Is not lessened by pouring out to others.
For a boundless cup
Cannot be emptied.
When love, joy, and peace are shared,
They not only do not diminish;
For offering love is extending it,
And what is extended is greater than it was before.
Just as love begins by kindling gently within,
Like a minute flame
On a lonely twig,
So does it grow in intensity as it spreads,
Like a wildfire
Through a great and ancient forest.
Just as a thirsty traveler,
Lost in the woods,
Rejoices to wander into an open clearing
And find it filled with life-giving streams
And waters that run clear,
So do I delight to find that peace
Is a nourishing clearing within,
A boundless inner space, vast and aware,
In which all thoughts and feelings appear,
Like clouds in a boundless sky,
That remains untouched
By the passing of the clouds.
Just as a small light,
Beamed into a hall of mirrors,
Begins as a thin gold stream,
And as it reflects off the polished glass,
Grows and spreads to illuminate the hall,
So does joy, having dawned within,
Swell into resplendence
All of these, I look within to find–
A beam of joy,
A clearing of peace,
A wildfire love.
For a recorded reading of this poem, feel free to listen here.