The Loving Father

A Love That Will Not Let You Go


The Loving Father. A Love That Will Not Let You Go. Picture of a man holding his baby son.

My daughter 35 years ago


The Loving Father - I Just Want To Be Loved

I had a loving father. I knew that I did, but I never felt it.

My father was a good man but very damaged and unable to show his feelings. So I grew up knowing in my head that I was loved, but not feeling it in my heart.

This is a common experience. Many of us, for one reason or another, grow up with little or no sense of a loving father and often we may not even realise the absence of the felt sense of that love until much later in life.

As a child I went through a period of idolising my father and in a way he was like a god to me, but always distant and never felt.

The love of a father has a special quality to it - a deep sense of comfort and all encompassing protection - a feeling of being taken care of, and a source of guidance, direction and inspiration.

Deep within all of us is a basic, primeval need to be loved, loved by someone, loved by anyone, just loved. This need to be loved has been the theme of countless songs, films and stories.

The late Freddie Mercury and Queen nailed it with "Somebody To Love":

"I get down on my knees
And I start to pray
'Til the tears run down from my eyes
Lord, somebody, ooh somebody
(Please) can anybody find me somebody to love?"








Is This The Love That Dare Not Speak It's Name?

The Irish philosopher, priest, writer and broadcaster John O'Donohue expanded on this theme, of the universal need to be loved, to include consciousness.

He spoke of consciousness at the individual level and at the universal level which I refer to as the energy of life and Christians such as O'Donohue call God.  

I am referencing him because he had a remarkable gift for putting into words experiences and concepts about consciousness that I do not have the language for.

Put simply he was a modern mystic - a "Zen Catholic priest" - who could articulate the unity of self and Self:

"There is an incredible loneliness in us for God.

We can have everything else, friends, achievements, possessions and success, but if we have closed off contact with God, something gnaws at us and the heart can find no contentment.

Deep in every heart, this longing is alive.”
 

Many of us who are agnostic, atheist, of other faiths or no faith, struggle with the idea of God because the word comes laden with so much baggage.

Those of us within the Buddhist tradition may recoil from the apparent dualism of the traditional Christian presentation of God. Put simplistically: “big God up there” and “little sinful me down here”.

The idea of a loving God has become so marginalised and under the radar that it is has now become the love that dare not speak it's name.

I want to be old school and offer a different perspective that draws from the deep well of Christian experience of God and that expresses this experience as relationship.

One of the unique features of the sayings of Jesus is his emphasis on the relational aspect of God, his expression of God as Father – a loving Father.



    The idea of a loving God has become so marginalised and under the radar that it is has now become the love that dare not speak it's name.








The Cloud Of Unknowing

In my experience a major stumbling block with the Christian approach to all this is its inherent reliance on a foundation of theological beliefs which you, as a believer, have to believe in. This is head before heart.

This traditional presentation of Christianity is essentially dualistic - as noted above, "Big God way up there" and "little sinful me all down here" - and the Buddhist non-belief in any personal god neatly side-steps all that.

But the apparent dualism within Christianity weakens and fades within the contemplative, meditative and mystical tradition.

Most of this was denied and aborted with the declaration of Gnosticism as heresy in about the 3rd century. However, fragments of the meditative tradition emerged in traditional Christianity around the 14th century as expressed in Evelyn Underhill's translation of the medieval spiritual guidebook called “The Cloud of Unknowing” which was written by an anonymous English monk.

The underlying message of this work suggests that the way to know God as the loving father is to drop all consideration of what is said and written about God, and to be daring enough to surrender one's mind, drop the ego, and enter the realm of "unknowing".

It is at this point that one may begin to experience the true nature of God as the loving father.

This has been described as Christianity with a Zen outlook.

I have shared at some length my experiences of what happens when you start to engage with consciousness via your higher self and how this takes place through your heart not your head.

This engagement is experienced, not thought, and is relational.

In my view, it is this personal and relational dimension that is a major strength of the Christian approach.

Buddhism focuses on the enlightened mind and Christianity reveals the awakened heart.






The Loving Father - A Love That Will Not Let You Go



In Deus Ex Machina I have set out a framework of 4 keys to working with the Energy Of Life [aka God or Consciousness].

I close this article and leave you with a working hypothesis and model of Consciousness, quoting from that article. This model is framed only for your heart.

As discussed in that article, we wear our beliefs lightly, as a guidance only, and not as immutable certainty.

"So please hear these words in your heart and not your head:

  • I want to offer you a model that positions Consciousness in metaphorical terms as a loving father.
  • I don't know about you, but my relationship with my own father was always distant, so this is a tough one for me, but please try it on for size and see how it makes your heart feel.
  • Imagine that Consciousness knows everything about you, and always has your best interests at heart.
  • Imagine a Consciousness that loves you more than you can ever know.
  • Imagine a Consciousness that seeks deep relationship with you, deeper than any human relationship you have ever experienced or ever will.
  • Imagine a Consciousness that knows your life purpose and that knows what you need before you ask.
  • Imagine a Consciousness as your Loving Father."

Here is a document which is compiled from over 50 different verses drawn from all over the bible.

It is written in the voice of God as Father speaking directly to you his child: 

Here is a love letter spoken directly to your heart.








    I have been misrepresented by those who don't know me.

    I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love.

    And it is my desire to lavish my love on you.

    For I am the perfect father.









Next Article: Your Ebenezer Stone Of Help

Return from "The Loving Father" to: Walking The Talk

Or to: What Is Spirituality?





English Chinese (Traditional) Russian French German Italian Spanish Vietnamese


LATEST ARTICLES

  1. The Challenges Of The Road Less Traveled

    Issues You'll Face When Playing The Long Game. The challenges of the road less traveled is loosely based around the phrase popularised by M.Scott Peck with his book "The Road Less Traveled". This arti…

    Read More

  2. How To Benefit From the Unseen Margins - 5 Key Tips For Success

    These Unseen Margins Can Have A Very Dramatic Impact On Your Life. To understand how to benefit from the unseen margins we need to start by understanding what they are and where we find them. In this…

    Read More

  3. The Art Of Thinking Clearly - How To Do More Than Just Survive And Reproduce

    3 Key Tips The art of thinking clearly starts with the sobering realisation that our brains are designed to achieve two things: Survival and Reproduction! 98% of our thinking is unconscious, automatic…

    Read More

  4. Algorithms to Live By - 5 Useful Rules Of Thumb

    5 Useful Heuristics From Algorithms To Live By The thesis of the book "Algorithms to Live By" is that algorithms developed for computers can be used by people in everyday life in a wide range of situa…

    Read More

  5. Finding Signal In The Noise - How To Avoid The Noise Bottleneck

    The Art Of Being Wise Is The Art Of Knowing What To Overlook. We are blessed and cursed to live in the digital age. We have access to more information than we can possibly handle yet we struggle to fi…

    Read More

  6. The Checklist Manifesto - Your Personal Safety Net

    A Checklist Is A Safety Net That Encourages Better Results And Prevents Avoidable Mistakes. The volume and complexity of what we know has exceeded our individual ability to deliver its benefits correc…

    Read More

  7. How Not To Be Stupid - 4 Key Tips

    How To Avoid The 7 Causes Of Everyday Stupidity. We are all capable of everyday stupidity as we undertake routine tasks in our business and working lives and also in our personal lives. This is not ab…

    Read More

  8. Beginners Mind And The Voice Of Experience

    Only The Experts Survived Evolution. "In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert's there are few." These are the famous words of Shunryu Suzuki in "Zen Mind, Beginner's Min…

    Read More

  9. The Art Of Being Alone Is A Skill

    Let's Make Today A Good Day. You may not have chosen the condition of being alone, and it may have been imposed upon you by circumstances beyond your control, but your response to the situation is wit…

    Read More

  10. Intuition & Anxiety - Are There Angels Or Devils Calling Here?

    How To Tell The Difference Between Intuition and Anxiety. How do you know whether the voice of your intuition is real or just the product of your inner anxiety? We all struggle with these inner voices…

    Read More

  11. Like A Prayer - Life Is A Mystery

    It Isn't The Process Of Prayer That’s The Problem, It’s The Way It’s Framed. Regardless of what we feel about Madonna or her song the topic of prayer often arouses strong reactions. Usually, it is som…

    Read More

  12. Fear Of Missing Out - "I'll Have What She's Having!"

    We Follow The Herd - We Mimic Other People's Choices. Fear of missing out - or FOMO as it is popularly referred to - is the feeling that everyone else in your peer group is having much more fun than y…

    Read More

  13. Free - Self Improvement Resources

    Exercising Balance and Discernment. I have just updated these self improvement resources with a number of additional sources of material that are practical and can help you change your life. Check it…

    Read More

  14. Your Higher Self - Your Hardwired Portal To The Universe

    This Is The You That Is Beyond Your Thinking Mind. This is the big you, the transcendent you, the you that is often referred to as your higher consciousness or higher self. This is the you that acts a…

    Read More

  15. The Power Of Gratitude - It's Good For You!

    Gratitude And Attitude Are Not Challenges, They Are Choices. The power of gratitude quite simply is that it is good for you! Many of us were raised by parents who instilled in us the social niceties o…

    Read More

  16. Living With Your Thoughts - 4 Tools To Help You

    Develop A Good Working Relationship With Your Mind. The first step in living with your thoughts is to understand and develop a good working relationship with all areas of your mind. The key to develop…

    Read More

  17. You Are Not Your Thoughts - How To Escape This Ferris Wheel Of Suffering

    The 4 Stages To Dealing With Your Thoughts. You are not your thoughts, at least that's what your rational mind tells you most of the time, but that's definitely not how it feels at 3 am when you have…

    Read More

  18. Finish What You Start - Action Will Destroy Your Procrastination

    4 Key Tips To Help You Finish What You Start. So why do you fail to finish what you start? Or in my case, why do I fail to even get started? There is a wealth of information out there about how to avo…

    Read More

  19. Going The Extra Mile - The Power Of One More

    Life Is Non-Linear, Which Makes The Rewards Of Continued Effort Disproportionately Big. In the pursuit of a long term goal you have to go countless extra miles to set yourself up for a big success. Go…

    Read More

  20. Tao Te Ching - Connecting To Your True Source Of Power.

    How To Be Lived By The Tao. The Tao Te Ching is one of those books that many people read, few understand, and even fewer put into practice. The only way to know the Tao is to experience it, and it is…

    Read More

  21. Dying To Self & Dropping The Ego

    Everything Does Not Revolve Around Me. The two phrases dying to self & dropping the ego are Christian and Buddhist expressions of the same fundamental truth - the need to correct the inbuilt, hardwire…

    Read More

  22. The Confident Mind - 4 Keys To Peak Performance

    Peak Performance Is Meditation In Motion. Peak performance is grounded in the Tao practise of Wu Wei which means "doing with out doing". This is all about how you take action by being so immersed in p…

    Read More

  23. Going With The Flow - The Balance Of Being And Doing

    Steer The Boat Each Day Rather Than Plan Ahead Way Into The Future. Going with the flow is about learning to become comfortable with uncertainty, and learning how to exploit the potential hidden withi…

    Read More

  24. 8 Principles For Success

    A Timeless Foundation On Which To Build Your Success. There are Universal laws and processes that work to support us and guarantee that we achieve all our goals. But first we need to know what they ar…

    Read More

  25. The Loving Father

    A Love That Will Not Let You Go. I had a loving father. I knew that I did, but I never felt it. My father was a good man but very damaged and unable to show his feelings. So I grew up knowing in my he…

    Read More

  26. Your Ebenezer Stone Of Help

    How To Stay Connected To Your True Source Of Power. Approximately 2,500 years ago the Israeli town of Kafr Qasim was close to the site of two battles between the ancient Israelis and their neighbours…

    Read More

  27. The Stockdale Paradox

    How To Deal With The Attrition Factor. The Stockdale Paradox is named after the late James Stockdale, former vice presidential candidate, naval commander and prisoner of war during the American-Vietna…

    Read More

  28. Embrace Your Fear Of Failure And Uncertainty

    We Celebrate Success And Ignore Failure. Numerous studies have been undertaken on successful people to understand what it was that they did to become so successful, how they did it and when they did i…

    Read More

  29. The Wilderness Years - 3 Keys To An Exit

    How You Got Into The Wilderness Matters Less Than The Lessons To Be Learnt There. The wilderness years can be described as any lengthy time, longer than a year, that is spend aimlessly; without an imm…

    Read More

  30. Boredom – Your Greatest Threat to Results

    We Live In A World That Glorifies The Results And Not The Process. We all know what we should be doing, but the trouble with that is that sooner of later we get bored. The enjoyment fades, the excitem…

    Read More



Get new posts by email:









Zen-Tools.Net





Support This Site