A Self-Love Affirmation
One way to open our heart to self-love is to frequently look into the mirror and say to ourselves:
“I am Beautiful, Perfect and Divine!”
Once we are able to see ourselves as beautiful, perfect and divine, affection and appreciation of ourselves happen naturally and we would find ourselves so pleased and in love with ourselves that we would not feel diminished so easily by the words and opinions of others. Thus is self-love essential for healing ourselves emotionally.
Once we are able to see ourselves as beautiful, perfect and divine, our consciousness rises and our perception of everything else also changes, and then suddenly, we realize the world is also beautiful, perfect and divine. Such a realization, when it is profound enough, is capable of opening us up to an experience of universal love. Additionally, having a positive perception of both ourselves and the world greatly opens our heart and expands our consciousness — sometimes to the extent that we might even pierce through the illusion of our separateness (or subject-object duality) and come face to face with the reality of our oneness. Such a realization of oneness further deepens our experience of universal love. While the experience of universal love in the first instance comes from letting go of our negative perception (and thereby transcending positive-negative polarity), the deeper experience of universal love in the second instance comes from letting go of our separation perception (and thereby transcending subject-object duality). Although one form of transcendence can happen without the other, having experienced one makes it easier for us to experience the other. While Positive Psychology and Positive Thinking focus on releasing negativity and transcending polarity, Advaita and Zen tend to focus on realizing oneness and transcending duality. New Thought and New Age, each being an amalgam of various disciplines and practices, aim to do both. In any case, transcending both polarity and duality, and the rediscovery of universal love, are essential for healing ourselves spiritually.
And once we are able to see both ourselves and the world as beautiful, perfect and divine, chances are both will go on to become even more beautiful, perfect and divine. After all, life can be quite a self-fulfilling prophecy. Thus is having a positive perception of both ourselves and the world essential for healing our earthly reality.
Suffice to say though that love isn’t attachment or possessiveness, lest we become so besotted with our outer earthly reality that we lose sight of the real treasure within. As Rumi put it, “why are we so enchanted by this world when a mine of gold lies within us?” And this gold mine within is none other than the beautiful, perfect and divine feeling of love, peace and bliss, which is our natural state of being, our ultimate state of wellbeing and our real identity.
Oddly enough, transcending also helps us with integrating. When we are able to see that we are naturally and unconditionally beautiful, perfect and divine, having flaws, warts and all, and accepting them, will not deter us from loving ourselves unconditionally. It is due to fear that we are unable to integrate. When we love ourselves unconditionally, we are not afraid of accepting and owning up to our flaws and mistakes. In fact, when we let go of our negative perception, we do not even see our flaws and mistakes as negative, they are just what they are. They are simply what is. They are part and parcel of being human, of learning and growing.
Ultimately, we are all beautiful, perfect and divine because we are all love, peace and bliss. If only we could see the soul instead of the person, or see the soul in the person, and interact on a soul to soul level, we would soon realize that we are all indeed beautiful, perfect and divine.