Sometimes it seems that we are born to be unloving.
I was reflecting on this after listening to a speaker claim that indeed our essence is to be loving and that for various reasons we stray from that essential, core space in our daily lives. This statement, while appealing, doesn’t seem to exactly fit with my experience.
I am concerned that such a belief in our loving nature might not resonate in people’s experience and therefore be dismissed.
If not essentially loving, then what?
It seems more true to me that we were born as social animals and that social connectedness is our essential being. We were born into social relationships. We could not have survived without the care, nurturing and support from other humans. Indeed, one of the most painful experiences a human can experience is being excluded or ostracized from his/her family, clan, group, or society.
As well, it does seem understood that happiness, good health and acceptable social behaviour is predicated upon the degree, extent, and quality of our social relationships.
It may be that the better the quality of our social relationships and the better we are at developing, tending to, and nurturing these relationships, the more likely we are to experience this feeling we call love.
In other words, love is not so much our essence but is rather a consequence of our essential being, which is, connected social relationships.