Deeper Than Love
By Catherine Kasper
"What should I write
about for February?" I asked.
"It should be about love," she answered.
"What could I say that hasn't been said before?"
"Well, it's all been said before, Mom."
"But," I protested, "everybody will be writing about love this month."
Well," she said thoughtfully. "Write about what's deeper than love." At that she walked out of the room, content she'd lead me out of the maze I'd been in.
But I wasn't out of the maze; I was somewhere very near the beginning of it. In my imagination I looked up to see my angel, Bernard, sitting in the window of a tower. From his vantage point he could easily see the entire privet hedge maze and my place within it.
"A little to the left," he suggested.
"Thanks loads," I answered, shaking my head. I looked up to heaven and sighed just to see if he'd notice.
"I saw that," Bernard said, laughing. "Think now."
I pondered. What's deeper than love? Deeper, depth, I looked at the ground. Underground! Seeds lying dormant in the heart of the wintry ground are possibility and potential waiting to be called forth. They are examples of patient waiting.
"Go on," Bernard urged. I continued walking and turned to the right, within the maze this time. What would it be like to love deeper than at the surface level, beyond the level of receiving gifts or presents? It would have to include loving even when someone is crabby or difficult to get along with. It would include loving someone who is in constant pain or frozen in their fear. I took a quick turn to the left.
It would also include devotion in the face of devastating illness. "Remember when you read, Tuesdays With Morrie?" Bernard asked.
"I used up most of the box of tissues," I answered.
"Go deeper still," he suggested.
Next would be caring for oneself and one's children in the face of abuse, I thought. Loving one's self so much that the horrible fear of choosing to put yourself first wouldn't matter. I walked into a long open straightway.
Holding the hand of another and being present as they reveal their very self to you would have to be next on the list. Being brave enough to talk with them about the incest or the child abuse they had suffered, even though you're really frightened to go there. Helping them face their demons as they travel their inward path. Listening and hugging and doing whatever you can do. Doing these things is surely love that goes deeper than saying it with flowers or sending a box of chocolates.
"Close your eyes," Bernard whispered.
With eyes closed, I saw a door in the hedge. I instantly knew where it was when I opened them again. I parted the branches and found the door. I walked through. Love, I know is not just gazing at the face of God in the pretty icon's picture, nor facing Spirit through the religious view. Love goes into real theology - the intimate knowledge of God, the personal knowing.
A theologian once told me that "fear of the Lord" does not mean being afraid of God, His vengeance and power to inflict destruction. "Fear of the Lord" means intimate knowledge of God. If we truly fear the Lord we go deeper than a surface understanding of God. We go deeper into the God part of our very selves, deeper into our own souls.
When we truly love, emotions, feelings, and bodies go as deeply within as possible. The triad body, mind and soul (spirit) holds true here. We go deeper than the surface into an intimacy with the other, into intimacy with the divine.
Have you ever been asked if you have "a personal relationship with God?" When I attended a prominent Southern fundamentalist college's Bible Conference in the 70's I was asked that question many times. My new acquaintances wanted to know if I had been "saved". I don't know how often I succeeded in keeping my face straight when answering. It was all very different from anything I'd ever been exposed to. Saved from what? I wondered. I'd envisioned myself being "saved" for later, closed into a huge plastic storage container and of no use to the rest of the world, stuck into the deep freezer of the Almighty, saved for next week Thursday.
How deeply into love is it possible to go? How is it measured, in feet, meters, and fathoms? (In lengths of privet hedge, fancy cars and expensive houses?)
"Can you see the exit now?" asked Bernard from his vantage point.
I barely heard him. How much knowledge of God is possible for us who are on the earthly side of the veil? How much have we forgotten in order to play this grand game? The knowledge of God is found in the knowledge of each other and the knowledge of all that each of us is beneath the surface. It is when we are willing to go, as Anna describes it, deeper than love, that we come face to face with God who has let the mask down, who has allowed us to see the heavens by allowing us to know each other.
In front of me was the end of the maze. By going within and allowing my angel to assist, I had gotten out. "You know, Bernard, I'll still send Valentines. I'll still teach children to cut hearts out of red paper and glue them to cutout paper snowflakes. I'll still cover cookies with pink icing and send them over to the neighbors who've plowed so much snow for me."
Bernard came to stand beside me. "When you do so, remember to look beyond their faces, past the sparkle of their eyes and into their souls so you find the Angel who dwells within," he said reassuringly. "Go beyond the surface - deeper than love."
I looked at my Angel and saw myself. "Thanks, Bernard," I said. I gave him a hug.
"My pleasure," he answered. He picked up the wheelbarrow I am so accustomed to seeing him with. Gardening tools stuck out over the sides atop bags of compost and peat moss. His green boots stuck out from underneath his robes. "There are more seeds to plant," he stated simply and walked back into my deepest heart.
"See ya, Bernard," I whispered.
From someplace within my heart I heard the familiar words; "Love
is. Love always is."
Copyright 2000, Catherine Kasper
Catherine Kasper first met her Angels when she was less than a year old. She saw balls of light that seemed to be woven into her favorite blanket. They talked to her often and reminded her of Home. As she grew, Catherine's Angels stayed with her, speaking through her favorite toys. Later on, they sat by her left shoulder in the form of balls of light and whispered explanations of the things she was experiencing. Today, they are simply here, she says, constantly with her, comfortable as old teddy bears, and she speaks with them daily.
Catherine has been an educator for nearly 25 years. In her job as an Elementary School Art Teacher and Library/Media Specialist, she teaches over 500 students a week to access Spirit. Catherine says it is wonderful to be the section Editor of the Angel area of PlanetLightworker and that she expands the range of her instruction here.
If you would like a private session with Catherine and her Angels, please call (262) 670-0134 or send email to Catherine@PlanetLightworker.com More of Catherine's work may be found at her website, http://www.flowerdance.net