“I love you if…”
Isn’t it a painful way to accept someone’s love when it has a condition or expectation? You can only receive attention, respect and care when you meet the other person’s standard. You might ask, “Do I deserve love only when I reach an expectation?” It is such a lonely and constricting idea for a loving relationship. However, we believe it is normal because many, around the world, accept this experience. Even if it is a love that we feel uncomfortable and anxious about, we suppress those feelings because we choose our personal reasons and what we see in society. We believe it is alright to be in a relationship that binds us into an image because it fulfills our other needs and we are following the norm. So, when can we say love or devotion is genuine?
In Tiger Singleton’s episode on Opportunity of Focus and Devotion, devotion is described as recognizing and accepting the truth. It is honoring what is real. Being real means being you. It is an allowing of who you truly are. He says,
“All throughout spirituality there's been an invitation of devotion which maybe, in some way or another, is a willingness to give up nonsense and to give what you are to the truth, to devote yourself, to give yourself to,”(TS, 2019).
He adds that the sacredness of spirituality is a devotion or great honoring to what is real. Upon reflection, it means the present. When we look at the present, it is ourselves we find. We see ourselves hoping to be genuine, natural and sincere to who we are.
It also coincides to the meaning of focus which Tiger Singleton explains as,
“It's a focus in what's happening. It is to bring your entire being into the movement that is allowing for distractions to fade, allowing ourselves to lose interest or to surrender that which is not here,”(TS, 2019).
He beautifully adds,
“We can equate focus to love. Focus to give your being, your attention to something fully,”(TS, 2019).
However, from childhood to adulthood, we believe that we need to focus on something to reach a result. It can be praise from our parents or significant other, a reward for a job well-done, or a prize for winning. We must focus now to secure our future. We are made to believe that we need to focus in making ourselves improved for a better education, career, marriage, retirement and so on.
Doesn’t it mean, who we are now, is lacking so we have to give all our energy to be more talented, skillful, and professional? This focus on the future simply brings fear, anxiety and a sense of inadequacy. It is up to us to accept and choose what we want to follow. Do you prefer to focus on the present that allows for your ingenuity or do you prefer a focus for a future that drains all your current energy?
Within us, we desire to devote ourselves to something that can make our life meaningful. We go borders and in every nook to search for our purpose because devotion is natural. It is even observable in the animal kingdom. Mother eagles and lionesses are fierce predators but when they have offspring, they feed, protect, and watch them until the little ones are ready to be free. However, mothers of every kind do not question their babies if they deserve their devotion and focus when they are born. Else, that kind of mother automatically becomes a wicked witch or evil parent.
So, when you find yourself experiencing a superficial devotion, step back and recognize the limitations. Listen to the feelings that emerge when you reflect on your relationship and address the reality. Tiger Singleton emphasizes that genuine devotion is saying,
“I see the truth of what you are and I can’t help to devote myself. I give you everything that I am. I see the depth of your beauty. I see the depth of your divinity. And in that, I can’t help but bow. In that, I can’t help but serve.”
Such devotion is not driven by any wants, expectations and conditions. It is an open acceptance of who you are. It allows you to be real. It allows you to let go of your anxieties where you can’t be this or that and simply invites you to be you.
Permit yourself that happiness despite the provocations of the ego and the world. Find a life of passion to simply be alive. Appreciate everything and be grateful for it.
In conclusion, we have Tiger Singleton’s wisdom in this thought,
“Letting go of everything else in this space. You'll find an incredible focus and a live passion that moves with the profound gratitude for simply being alive,”(T.S, 2019).