The capacity to love, fully without holding back, is inherent in the heart of each and every one of us.
So why do we so commonly withhold our love? Who is it that we are “punishing” when we withhold our love? And is there a demand that we place on the other; i.e. who they need to be, or what they need to do, before we will allow our love to be expressed?
How familiar is it for you to withhold your love? To shut down your own energy, hold a tight constraint in your chest, compress your breath. When you were young and without the tools and experience of an adult body and adult consciousness, there was a limit to how you could control or believe you could control your environment. Your entire world may have been the sphere of your crib, bedroom, house, mother, father, siblings. As a baby you would have noticed, even at this very early developing stage of consciousness, that if you were able to restrict that flow of energy thru your body, you would affect not only on your own internal domain, you would have noticed an effected on your external environment. What if in that withholding of breath, feeling, or flow of energy you received a response from your environment? Someone noticed, and a change occurred. Consider just how powerful that would have felt. With child consciousness it is important to remember that any such response good or bad, healthy or unhealthy would have felt empowering and would have therefore become a foundation pattern to how you would interface with your own body and the world around you.
In addition you may have observed a behavior pattern in your primary and most cellularly influential teacher, your parents or caregivers It’s easy to imagine a situation where as a young child you witness your mother, perhaps upset at your father, withhold her love, attention, and energy and to withhold her full capacity to be in full relationship with your father. If this modeling from your parents was prevalent in your environment, it is likely that this is a behavioral pattern you would learn, even if you were at a pre verbal or pre ambulatory age.
As a child with exceptionally impressionable consciousness we learned and discovered ways to interact with our world that enabled us to have a sense of control. We developed a set of tools that enabled us to survive, and thus we began to create a sense of self that can interact with our environment.
The limitation of this pattern is that, as we grow-up and develop mentally, physically and especially emotionally, it becomes exceedingly difficult to shed behaviors that were hardwired into our very impressionable consciousness when we were so young
This withholding pattern thus becomes firmly embedded into our psyche. We then consciously or more commonly, subconsciously, use it as a tool to control, communicate, and affect our environment, just as we did when we were young.
The transformational moment occurs when we first begin to observe this pattern and begin to recognize when and where we use it. Any time you withhold your full presence and anytime you shut down, withhold your love, get tense, or hold your breath in order to transmit or show another how you “feel”, this pattern is at play. By paying attention you will be able to feel this in your physical body. You will actually feel this in your chest. The heart, of course, is associated with love, or more accurately, associated with our capacity for human connection and relationship. With this, and most of our relationship patterns, there is a demand that the one we are with be or respond in a particular way. When they don’t, our default reaction is to drop into child consciousness, reach into our set of tools and pull out the pattern that remembers how effective and empowering to withhold and shut down our energy, our love can be.
The belief that underpins this is the belief that you will be able to punish or hurt another by withholding yourself, your full creative, loving self. You believe that by transmitting your disappointment in this way it will affect your environment, just as it did in your childhood.
Anyone familiar with this ‘I will withhold my love’ pattern (which is everyone) can begin to see how this will be a contributing factor in the development of heart disease, the primary cause of mortality in the United States. Energetically, health is a function of balance and flow. The universal life force, qi, prana, vitality, or spirit, is the etheric energy that enlivens the physical body, as well as our emotional and mental bodies. Anytime we withhold love we directly decrease or stop the energy that flows through the heart and the heart chakra. As this happens, we begin to damage the physical functioning of the heart. Our ability to give and receive love, the main energetic function of the heart, becomes increasingly impaired. This creates a snowball effect within our physical, mental and emotional bodies and an ingrained habitual pattern develops. As we do this, again either consciously or subconsciously, we then model it for our children. They learn to do it. It becomes the norm within our family, it becomes the norm within our community, and it becomes the norm within our culture. The goal of transformational work is not to vanquish these patterns. The goal of transformational work is to be actively responsive to our environment so that we can consciously choose which, if any, of the many patterns in our toolbox we wish to employ at any moment.
Unwinding this pattern begins by recognizing when it is in play. The physical body becomes our tracking device. As mentioned, you will feel it in your body, chest becomes tight or there is will be a shutting down sensation, or even a sense of numbness. You will recognize the pattern as one that has been used in your family of origin, likely going back thru the generations. You will feel separated from whoever is in this dynamic with you; you will likely feel justified in your behavior. These are the hallmarks of a defensive belief pattern at play.
Unwinding this pattern continues as you breathe into your heart, allow the tension in your body to dissipate, take a look at your demand you have projected onto the other that they do, or be, a particular way. Consider the possibility that your capacity to love is not dependent on someone else’s action or their particular response. That the capacity to love, fully without holding back is inherent in the heart of every one of us. Take a risk to allow this love, even if just slightly, to move through your heart. You will notice a sensation that is significantly more pleasurable then withholding. The pain that is inflicted when you ‘punish’ by withholding your love will be felt by others, but above all, the pain of this ‘punishment’ will be felt most intensely in the center of your own heart. Consider that you will have a much more profound and empowering effect when you allow love to flow through your heart. The love that flows through your heart will be felt by others, but the pleasure you experience will be felt most profoundly and deliciously within your own heart. The more we enrich our lives with heart healing choices, the more we enrich the lives of others.