During the past 10 years of my consulting work, I discovered more and more a phenomenon, which surprised me completely. People, who seemed to have lost almost every contact with their spiritual heart, if they ever had it. They seemed to be living without feeling their (spiritual) heart. Whatever they did, originated in their head. All of them were smart and intelligent people, able to feel their emotions. But whenever love came into play, they seemed to be utterly helpless.
Even when they longed for a partner, a loving relationship. No experience in this regard could bring them true fulfillment. They had good friends, but a partner for life, they did not find. They could even fall in love and have a trusting and reliable relationship. Very often they even married, but separated after a short time. Later on, they thought about these episodes, full of melancholy. And why the love, which they thought they had found, disappeared so very fast. Very often they jumped into affairs beside the primary relationship. Always feeling dissatisfied, and in their innermost really unhappy. The wildest and most passionate sexual encounters left them with a feeling of emptiness and the bitter experience of having been abandoned. Such encounters eventually lost every attractiveness. The word „love“ itself made them uneasy. And they asked: „Love, what’s that?“
On the other hand, there are couples who stay a life long in true love. Sometimes they give the impression from the outside, that they do not
even match particularly well. If asked, how they kept their love so long so credibly, they hesitate to mention anything particular. It was definitely no „work“ for them. They seem to have been just blessed with a wonderful present from heaven. For all those who never experienced anything like that, it remains unexplainable.
My consulting work was only with those who had „problems“ with their relationships. I’d like to call them the „temporarily disabled for love“. More often than not, their „problem“ was not even in their relationship, but in another domain.
Not always, but most of the time, we succeeded to transform these people into „lovables“, or men and women to be able to love. Each case needed an individual, sometimes pretty elaborate procedure. There was, however, one overall guiding principle, and it lead always directly to the heart. From the physical to the spiritual. All these experiences led me to the firm conviction that it is possible to lead people to love-ability. A personal growth process of great importance to those going through it. In fact, most often, a real life changing story.
Perhaps it is impossible to provide an „instruction“ on how to acquire love-ability. Nevertheless, I want to describe a few of the most essential steps, which could achieve such a demanding goal.
The first time I became aware of a lacking contact to the heart, occurred 20 years ago. A young capable and intelligent woman suddenly became very significantly unproductive in her work. Before, she was an example in reliability and discipline. And extremely productive. Now, she was always late, even came to work very late, could hardly cope with the demands of her job and wondered aloud how this came all about. Well, she had 5 lovers at the same time. A very demanding logistical problem to say the least. She hardly slept any more and was constantly in a real emotional turmoil. We had a very open talk and she confessed that the whole situation was very distressing. Yet, she did not know how to change it. I asked her, whether she was in love with the men she slept with. Or whether she was just sexually dependent on them. No, not in love at all, rather in need of unlimited sex. I further asked, whether she had ever loved a man. Hesitatingly, she seemed to faintly remember, that probably her first love might have been a true love story. But at the moment, she was not even sure, whether that has been „true love“. „How could I know, whether it was love?“ I said: „The answer to this can come only from your heart.“ „But how do I get this answer? I do not feel my heart at all.”
For a moment I was pretty surprised and tried to find an idea of how to bring her into contact with her heart. Perhaps at first by making a physical contact, e.g. with her hands to her physical heart. She moved her left hand somewhat helplessly to the lower region of her belly. But at least to the left side of the body. At first I thought: „This is not possible.“ And I told her that. Jokingly adding that she would have quite a special heart, which went that far down in her belly. Of course she did not feel any heart beat. So I asked her to feel her pulse at the wrist of one of her hands. It took awhile, but finally she felt the pulse as a manifestation of the activity of her heart. She then moved her hand back to her chest und finally could even faintly feel her pulse there. A physical contact to her heart was established. I recommended, to do this as a daily „exercise“. Several times a day. Touch her wrist and her chest. She did that for about 2 weeks. And she said good-bye to all her 5 lovers in the same 2 weeks. Great surprise. She began to properly rest and sleep, and very soon was as productive as before.
During another talk, we succeeded to develop an idea of the spiritual heart. This very fine feeling, which is hard to describe. A kind of aura in the heart region. After several weeks and further talks, she started to develop an unmistakable awareness, feeling as exactly as possible her heart aura.
And now, for me, the most astonishing happened. For I had no prior experience with such a process. She surprised me with the news that she had returned to her first love, and now she knew exactly that she had met the man of her life. The love of her life. A few years later, they married and they are still today a loving couple. Would I not have been witness to all this, I would believe that this is a fairy tale.
More than 10 years later, I was confronted with further situations, where people did not find the contact with their hearts. Over time, more and more I was witness to such stories. Each in their own way unique and different in their evolution.
As e.g. that man, whose colleagues described as cold at heart and cynical. With a rasor sharp mind. A top-manager, who was not only respected, but who was feared by many people he worked with.
What made him somewhat bearable was the fact, that he was always very polite and never hurting the feelings of others with his comments. In fact, he was a very tactful man. And with women he could be particularly charming.
At the beginning of our work together, he asked me to help him in developing a strategy for a successful business venture with the young woman he worked with for more than 10 years. Very soon it became clear that this was just the surface of some deeper situation.
The working relationship with this young woman seemed particularly trustful and close. They often understood each other without words.
Rumors among their colleagues hinted at a secret love affair and they gave the impression of a very close couple. I could detect some little signs of him being in love with that woman. They were so subtle that even she did not notice them or at least she ignored them completely. It was strictly forbidden to him to give the minutest sign of his feelings towards her. Otherwise, she would have immediately ended their working relationship. When once he sent her an SMS saying: „I miss you.“ This was the moment for a final and unmistakably clear ultimatum, to not do anything like that any more.
For more than 3 years, he invited me to talks of several hours. To me he confessed how completely he had fallen in love with that woman. He promoted her career wherever he could, as long as she stayed close to him. Despite her resistance to tell him anything that was not absolutely necessary out of her private life, he desperately wanted to get as much information about this aspect of her life. Mostly via her friends and her colleagues. So he was always up-to-date as to her occasional lovers. He did not want to admit it, but his jealousy was almost unbearable.
After about 3 years, the woman told him, that she wanted to change her professional life and pursue a completely different path: working with animals. This started a period of intensive quarreling with each other. My role changed to mediator between the two. A very delicate balancing act. I had to be extremely careful not to provide the other with the least information about all that was given to me.
He tried to keep her by all means, making all kinds of attractive offers. When she was in a very tight financial situation, he even provided her with a substantial amount of money. Money that he would never get back again. Nothing worked: she definitely wanted to separate from him. Freeing herself, as she said.
Accidentally a doctor discovered 2 closed arteries in his heart and he needed urgent surgery. A heart attack was imminent. Maybe a sign of his „broken heart.“ In all secrecy the operation was performed in the USA, and was successful.
He did not stop believing, that he could somehow keep her under his sphere of influence. And they continued to quarrel ever more fiercely.
But all of a sudden, the wondrous change to the better occurred. He could let her go, and told her so. He knew now that his love to her could still be in his heart. By the way, during their many years together, they never exchanged any tenderness or affection.
Later, during a lunch, he declared to me what a revelation his discovery about unconditional love was. 5 years ago, I really thought that we would never ever reach this point: it was like arriving at the peak of Mount Everest. After this lunch in spring, we agreed on another meeting in late fall that year. It should not be. During early fall, on a hike in the mountains, he sat on a bench and said: „Never in my life have I been so happy.“ And right after this, he died of a heart attack.
His death let her mourn in a way that surprised me: she seemed unconsolable. A year after his death, she asked me to spend a few hours with her. She hardly could bear the thought that he was not here any more. We looked at a „fairy tale“ which we recorded on video while working during that quarreling period. When he read the story he had composed to us, he suddenly burst into heavy tears. This cold and cynical man! Now, one year after his death, it was obvious that he had become her guardian angel. Her heart was now in deepest connection with his soul. Since then I lost any contact with her.
The next love stories I will only briefly summarize, which is somewhat unfair. Unfair to their many aspects worth mentioning, unfair to their richness in emotions, their very complicated processes and their mixture of happiness, melancholy, remorse and reconciliation with partners and destiny. Each in their own ways beautiful.
A very attractive, smart and intelligent woman found the man of her life very early. Maybe somewhat too early. They married young, but right after the wedding night, the woman fell in love with another man and started an intimate affair immediately. At first this seemed not to do any damage to the married couple. But when the woman moved to the other man, it was too much for her husband. He could not forgive, but still did not want to divorce. It was her, who finally took all the steps to be finally separated.
She never found any man since then, who could have been her permanent partner. Till today she is single. Professionally very successful. She only misses being a mother, and she would certainly have been a very good one. Of course, all her later affairs with men were complicated and full of all kinds of conflicts, controversies, quarrels and basically most dissatisfying. Although I had many talks with her, over many years, I did not succeed to lead her to her heart.
The first love of a very young woman, was for everyone, who knew the couple, a pretty „asymmetric“ affair. Highly intelligent, disciplined and with an exemplary work ethic, she went for a university career. He was a waiter, who never worked at the same place for more than 3 months. Any further development of his professional life seemed out of reach for him. She loved him as intensely as one could love someone. But he played very nasty games with her. Was making fun of her ugly feet and ears – the two sore points in her perception of her body. And when she once developed a rash, she panicked and thought he would leave her for good. They separated at least 5 times, and re-united shortly after each separation. Always on her initiative. He „graciously* „admitted“ her again, and continued his nasty games. Elements of the story of Anna Karenina were recognizable. When her soul was in such great pain, that she became ill, confused, and her studies were in jeopardy, she turned to me in sheer desperation.
It took almost a year and many long talks to make it perfectly clear to her that this relationship was neither based on love nor did it have any chance to last. Seeing that clearly, still did not let her make the final cut. Another half year was necessary, and she still tried to establish contact with him over and over again. As soon as he sent her a basically meaningless SMS, she could not resist reacting to it. She really started to believe that she would never ever find a man, who found her attractive enough. During this time the young boy had many affairs with other women.
Eventually, she succeeded in making the cut definitive, and felt really released from her mental prison. Now it was suddenly very easy not to react to his approaches any more. I once offered her a bet, that he would make contact and she did not believe me that this would ever happen. When it did, she was completely surprised to have lost a sure bet, and since she was really short of cash, she hated to pay. While she had lost a bet, she had won freedom.
Today she is together – after having found him about a year ago – with the man of her life. A real soul mate as both are convinced of each other. After a long time of suffering, finally a preliminary happy end. She now not only has the man of her life, she also established contact to her heart.
The last story I want to tell very briefly here is definitely almost to much of a banality at the end of a very incomplete list of events. Only because it happens so often, it merits to be mentioned here.
He courts her, reads every wish from her lips. Knows sometimes what she wants without her saying anything. A perfect charmer of women. As soon as he has „conquered“ her, he goes to the next woman and starts his game anew. But despite all that, the original one gets pregnant, and they marry. This despite the fact, that she always knows that he is the wrong one. They stay together less than one year. Today, the woman is raising her son, and works as a single mother. Filling her life with joy is her son. She remained a very capable, cheerful woman. Fully competent in her profession – she is a nurse – and says that she could not be more satisfied with the life she lives. No need to get to know another man right now if not ever.
Adultery leads in the majority of cases to separation and divorce. It is so frequent that it seems, in a strange way, as to have become a „normal“ phenomenon. A phenomenon that in reality most often is filled with lots of pain, anger, fear, desperation and hopelessness. The worst amongst these are those who are coupled with a change in sexual orientation of one of the partners. From hetero-sexual to homo-sexual. Interestingly enough, can a change from hetero to homo be taken a little bit easier to cope with by the partners than a change from hetero to lesbian. At least every case I know shows this.
At the beginning of my consultancy in love matters, my first question is always: „Do you love him or her?“ Most of the time the answer is: „I do not know or do not know any more.“ When I continue asking: „Did you ever love him or her?“ The answers are pretty similar to the first ones. „What was it then, which brought you together?“ A big variety of mostly „practical“ statements follow: „I always wanted to have a family, my own children.“ „ I looked for financial security.“ „I wanted to move ahead socially into another class.“ „At the beginning, I found him or her very attractive – his or her views, his or her looks or whatever.“ „But tell me, how can I know that it was love?”
This last question I try to fill in my answers with my clumsy theories. Some very shy approaches to depict the mystery and secret of love in observable terms.
He or she who loves has no demands, no expectations. Above all, no demands for possession of any kind. Respects the other as he or she is, does not want to educate or change him or her. Nevertheless he or she interacts intensively and lively. Resolves conflicts. Brings them to the open fast. Is open and honest about his or her wishes and needs. Does this with requests and never with demands or even – worst of all – in form of reproaches or accusations. Reproaches are a real killer of love.
The highest form of love does not know jealousy or the fear to be left alone. This might at first sound quite strange, and impossible, as jealousy very often is considered a true sign of love. Now, if you begin to doubt, whether your jealousy is a sign, that you are not capable of true love: do not take this conclusion. You are just not there yet. He or she then learns very profoundly to enjoy what their partner enjoys.
This somewhat home-baken list of characteristics of true love is obviously pretty incomplete. But it still might give some clues as to what could represent love-ability.
For a truer picture of our topic I refer to my next blog, the „texts about love“. Poets are still the best messengers to honour this most beautiful of all the abilities of men.
Leaders could be people who make boldest dreams come true. But where are the leaders who work on making the dreams of John Lennon in his song „Imagine“ come true?
Dreaming without doing keeps us where we are. In a world where those who speak the language of power are in control. Or seem to be so.
People who are getting extra-ordinary things done, are obliged to communicate with those in power and to know the rules of power games. Without that, they are not taken seriously.
To be successful or simply to survive, we learnt that we need to be ever better, stronger, faster, smarter, more powerful and fitter. And by striving for all that we also believe we’ll stay healthy. Healthy and not healthier. As for health any comparison is futile. A shy reminder of nature that there could be a world without comparison.
As long as we are healthy we take health for granted. Except in some reflective moments when gratefulness is with us. But most of the time we forget how precious it is. Only when we become seriously ill, we realize its true and unique value. Especially when getting well again becomes quite demanding.
As long as we are healthy, we tend to underestimate the necessary effort to stay well. All our tasks keep us from paying special attention to staying healthy: physically, mentally and spiritually. This neglect of our own health very often runs parallel with the neglect to pay attention to the health of our relationships, the health of our areas of responsibility and our communities.
Great leaders are focused on the outside. Not themselves. This is true even for narcisstic leaders. They all are gifted in leading others to extraordinary achievements. Bringing demanding projects to a sussessful end. Getting the approval of vast majorities and sometimes even gaining an admiring entry into the history books.
We praise true leaders for their audacity, their bravery, their visionary power, their integrity, their being a role model and their capacity to inspire and encourage us. But is this praise also accompanied with our love to them? Strange question maybe. Love alone seems not sufficient to make leaders effective. More often than not, leaders need to rely on respect if not outright fear.
No wonder that leaders who are still ready to learn and develop themselves concentrate consciously or sub-conscously on „outside things“: how could I be more convincing, what do I have to do to be credible and trustworthy, how to go about to be truly influential, how to exert my power carefully and responsibly?
If you are a leader who finds time to ask such questions, you probably belong to a minority of men and women who even find time to focus on these. Rather than running constantly from meeting to meeting, or worse from crisis to crisis. Rather than being constantly reachable on your handy, even in your „free“ time. For all those who are completely „eaten up“ by their almost inhumanly dense agendas, all that I am going to propose here is probably too far away as to have even the remotest chance to be taken into consideration.
C. G. Jung once said: „Those who look outside – dream. Those who look inside – are woken up.“ So, who are the real dreamers and who are those who make the good dreams come true?
Now a few words as to power: Power is important. Without power there would have been no survival. We need constantly power, physical, mental, even spiritual. It needs power to win debates, fights, battles and in its extremest physical form to win wars. We need brain power for research and innovation, for convincing and winning other people. We need power to reach extraordinary and ordinary goals. No wonder the language we speak most often is the language of power. Yet in almost all power disputes there is a winner or winners and a loser or losers. Only in a minority of cases, there is neither a winner nor a loser, and even one party can feel as a winner and a loser.
If we only know this language, we might become unable to speak the language of love. Which is needed to express love. But more than that, it is probably needed for those problems that can only be solved by love. Using the language of love. It is needed for making peace, for truly working co-operatively together, for finding win-win solutions, for finding solutions to problems that seem unsolvable, especially when approaching them with the language of power. All those problems that mankind today shys away from. Therefore my urgent call to all the leaders of the world: start looking inside. Ask every once in a while, maybe even as a daily exercise: When did I make use of the language of love. And if you find out that it did not occur to you: Listen to my call: Let’s learn the language of love.
As human beings we cannot find truth, but love.
And this despite the fact that besides all which makes us wonderful beings, we also bear with us all our ingratitude, our cowardice, our falseness, our bigotry, our greediness and our meanness. When we succumb to our ugly parts it becomes easier for us, to realize the unimagineable evil than the imagineable good.
But we have the choice in every life situation. Basically there are only 6 to 7 choices as described in the “Manifesto to the Earth Flag” below. If we choose carefully, using our brains sensibly, we will experience life as the wonder that it is.
Earth Flag Manifesto
As a human being, I am a unique part
of planet Earth and the Universe
and I can:
love you and myself,
keep learning and smiling,
clean up my own mess,
use just what I need,
give and contribute all that I am able to
and be meaningful for you and for me.
Listen to the Song of the Earth Flag Manifesto under the following link: https://soundcloud.com/rolf-fink
And here is the text to the song:
When I’am low and when I’m down
life seems gray and all is dark.
But when my eyes turn to the sky
I hear a voice that tells me
who I am and what I can:
I’m a human being
and I’m unique.
A precious part of planet Earth,
and the Universe.
And I can, yes I can
love you and love myself
I can, yes I can
keep smiling and learning
with joy and with ease
I can, yes I can,
yes I can clean up my own mess
yes I can
use just what I need,
not more not less
yes I can,
give and contribute
all that I am able to
and be meaningful
be full of meaning
for me and for you.
When I’m strong and keep on sailing
On neverending waves of bliss,
and listen to my throbbing heart
I hear a voice that tells me
Who I am and what I can:
Credits to the Earth Flag Manifesto Song:
Music: Roman Riklin
Idea and Lyrics: Rolf Fink
Produced by Roman Riklin
Vocals: Icarus Perez, Monica Schär, Rachel
Choir: Ndlovu Youth Choir, Conductor: Ralf Schmitt
Piano, Guitars, E-Bass, Drum-Programming, Cello, Metallophon, Violoncello: Roman Riklin
Recordings: Roman Riklin, Skarabäus Studio Dietikon
Vocal-Recordings: Frank Niklaus, Somastudios Zofingen
Choir Recordings: Tristan Trent, Figure of 8 Studios, Johannesburg
Mix and Master: Dave Hofmann and Frank Niklaus, Somastudios Zofingen
Ndlovu Youth Choir (founded in 2009)
Yound people’s choir of the Hugo Tempelman Stiftung in Elandsdoorn, South Africa
70 % of these girls and boys are orphans of AIDS infected parents and/or are HIV-positive
The loveliest light –
we do not see.
The loudest –
we do not hear.
The strongest –
we do not feel.
The weakest light
brings us closest
to our core,
which glows the brightest,
when our souls
Author: Rolf Fink
Translated by Thomas Trostmann and Rolf Fink