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February 26, 2017

The Love Which Never Dies – Part #2

by Seijaku Roshi

“Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along.”

― Jalaluddin Rumi

Several years ago I wrote an article titled “The Love which Never Dies,” it was during the worst period of my life to date.  I had yet to experience then the two heart attacks and several bouts with pneumonia which would follow in the years ahead.  This was a battle of the worst kind of ailment or disease possible – “A Broken Heart”.  Eventually I did have those heart attacks, I did battle with pneumonia four times, and as some of you know a wrestling match recently with a virus that landed me in the hospital for a few days.  I continue to fight the good fight of staying alive and well, I still know of no other battle more painful than when the heart is broken and left to make its way from the battlefield and thereafter.

Yesterday we all woke to one of those strange “climate change” effects, “Summer in February”.  As I too enjoyed the day with my daughter and friends, (who had not been to my home in a very long time, a kind of “reunion” of friendship), like so many of you I was impressed by the budding of trees and the presence of daffodil’s breaking through the winter soil.  Perhaps like me you thought, “How Strange, how mysterious.”  Well, later that evening I would conclude it was Mystery, the greatest one of all, and it was speaking to me, to all of us.  Perhaps you may have heard Its voice as well.

That night I had the pleasure as I have had on numerous occasions over the past 30 years to have dinner with my oldest and closest friends.  Childhood friends whom I have known for nearly 47 years. More than half of that time they have been lovers and spouses.  Like so many lovers and spouses, they have seen “good times and more than their share of bad times”; been through “sickness and health,” “much better times and more than their share they might tell you of worst times.”  In fact the last time I was with them all parties, myself included, assumed by the end of the evening when he would leave in his car before her, that the “bad times” had won.  That they were ready to part ways not just that night but for the rest of their lives, and say the word the heart never wants to hear, “Goodbye”.  But Love, the kind “Which Never Dies,” which knows no beginning and no end, The Greatest Mystery of All, broke through the “winter of their hearts” and in the winter I saw daffodil’s and once again hope for us all. 

Yep, goodbye was not coming.  As we sipped red wine together “she” reminded me how long they had been together and how long I had been there with them through the years.  She told me how much underneath the pain of the battles was a never ending compassion and love for him, a history which included two wonderful and successful children, and yes the friendship we all shared as friends, and that, “She was taking him on a cruise on the anniversary of their marriage in June”.  Because, at least the Love they shared through it all, was going to be, no matter the circumstances or situations that came or would come, “The Love Which Never Dies,” the One they promised each other at the Wedding I co-officiated at; the one which “Trusts in itself, which Hopes, which alway’s Persevere’s, and Never fails.” 

Yesterday was one of those days we wake up in the morning and later finding ourselves so captivated by our surroundings that we can so easily miss “stopping to smell the daffodil’s” and miss the message hidden in the memory its aroma it awakens within us.  Well, I have been an explorer of mysteries forever and have trained to go at it slowly so I never miss what’s in the details of the flowers petals.  Summer was not the only thing in the air, Love was, and it had something to say, something to remind me. 

The Love which never dies, is the only true love, real love, the real MacCoy.  There are no “alternative facts,” when it comes to Love or anything real for that matter, no “different kinds of love.”  As my Italian family would say, “L’amore è amore,” “Love is Love.”  And, when it is really Love, it can never die.  So as I see it, and as I have seen it since that first kiss landed on me by my third cousin from South Philly in another lifetime, we have no choice, no option, no alternative facts for life – We were born to Love and to Be Loved.  Love is not the destination, it is The Way.  And as Rumi also reminds us,

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” 

Because, it’s the only true meaning and purpose of it all, and it’s the only thing not “of the nature of impermanence”. 

Rumi, you were a little devil weren’t you!

Hey, I intend to love you,

Seijaku Roshi

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