Self-Love: The Key To Personal Liberation

no apologies

They say, the most difficult thing to do is to love one’s self. In my experience, this is true.

What does self-love mean, and why is it so difficult?


  • Self-love is to be honest with one’s self first and foremost. Even if you choose not to be honest with others at any given moment.

  • To appreciate and accept yourself as you are: to give yourself permission to be exactly what you really want to be.

  • To care for yourself enough to live your life according to your own will and not to the demands and expectations of others.

  • To validate and approve of yourself, your choices, your desires, your unique self-expression, no matter what the rest of the world thinks.

  • To love yourself enough to trust yourself.

  • To accept your ‘wayward’ emotions without judgment.

I don’t know if you agree about the difficulty of loving one’s self. I have explored and struggled with this thing called self-love for some time, and it felt like I was challenging the whole world with its agreed upon belief system which demands that we must put others first before ourselves, so that we don’t appear selfish by catering first to our needs before the needs of others. The result of this hypocritical belief is that while we may appear generous, kind and strong on the outside, we may actually be suffering, tormented and fragile inside because we are too scared to show our true feelings, to express our true desires, and live authentic lives.

If we love ourselves enough to give ourselves the permission to be who we are, it will be easier for us to permit others to be who they are. As we accept our idiosyncrasies, our mistakes, our nonstandard or non-mainstream desires, we will find ourselves more understanding and permissive of others’ mistakes and idiosyncrasies. If we love ourselves enough not to beat ourselves up to conform to some established standard of normality or morals, we would not also be as critical and judgmental of others who we think are not measuring up to such social standards.

It is true that, at the core, the way we treat ourselves (consciously and, mostly, unconsciously) is the way we treat others. It is when we are cruel and exacting of ourselves (even if we don’t know or admit it) that we also become cruel and exacting of others.

So when we fully love ourselves for who we are, we set ourselves free. We let ourselves off the hook. And simultaneously, we set others free. For it is in understanding and acknowledging our own complexities, our strengths and weaknesses, our fears and insecurities that we truly come to develop genuine understanding and sympathy for others.

Money Is Power

Honest. Admit it. Whether we like it or not, money is power.

We may be strongly resistant to the thought that our sense of self-worth could be tied to how much money we have, but having very little or no money at all does significantly affect our level of self-confidence. For so-called conscious “spiritual workers”, especially, it is particularly difficult and embarrassing to admit this to oneself, since we loathe the thought that our value and confidence level could be affected by a mere “material” thing, such as money.

However, rather than to go on continually denying (as many Light Workers do) that our feelings are not a bit affected by our financial circumstances, it serves us to understand our confused or ambivalent relationship to money, so that we may find peace with it.

The first step is to see money for what it really is.

money is power

Money is energy. Energy is power. Money is power.

Energy, money, power – they all go through cycles of surges and declines. And just like the ebb and flow of the ocean tides, our emotions are naturally affected by the same energetic movements – the ebb and flow of money in our experience.

So there is really nothing to be embarrassed about when our moods and self-confidence is dampened by the ebb in our finances. It is but natural that we don’t feel so confident and energized when money energy is on the low, as it is natural to feel perky and confident when money energy is on the flow.

However, although we can’t help but feel dispirited when we are face to face with financial ebb, we can always find a way to use the experience to our advantage.

In my next blog post, I’d like to share some of the interesting things I learned when I didn’t have money.

A Dangerous Story

dalai lama on paths

We may believe that stories are only stories. That they are fantasies thought of by innovative, clever minds.

Myths, legends and folklores are used both as educational aids and as past time entertainments listened to mostly by children. And we think these stories are harmless. To children with pliable minds, stories could be easily outgrown and discarded; thus could be harmless.

Adults, however, are different. Unlike children, many adults have fixed mindsets. They are hard to outgrow and let go of stories told  to them by formidable authorities. Out of fear or ignorance, adults tend to stubbornly stick to certain stories – for years, for lifetimes, for generations, for eons.

Stories are only stories, but when you give a man or a woman a story, he or she can become dangerous. Not only that stories are used as weapons but are also the source of much bigotry as when a singular story is glorified, defended, upheld as the one and only true story. People swear to fight for it, and die for it.

Stories are born of people’s actual experiences, as well as their delusions and fantasies. There exist all sorts of stories as there exist all sorts of people with all sorts of experiences. However, in the course of human history, there are a group of people who took upon themselves the authority to select certain stories and make these the “official” stories for all humanity to believe in. Their gods have become the official gods; their rituals are the only sanctioned rituals.

This select group of people act as the grown-up leaders to the rest of us who they regard as mere children to be herded. In order to propagate only one story, the story that serves and sustains them, they killed other competing stories. They burned ancient libraries, distorted the Teachings, and silenced and demonized other storytellers.

The singular story is being preached in pulpits, broadcasted in the media, and taught in schools. It gained so much influence and many mouthpieces that it became almost impossible to think beyond its contents. Any other story that diverged and conflicted with the official story is branded as madness that must be destroyed before it spreads and poses a real threat.

As long as we keep believing in only one story, we are tuned in to only one limited frequency, which continues to trap us in a singular, limited reality. This reality is an invisible prison. This is why, in spite of our “authorized freedom”, many of us feel like we are not truly free.

Yes, stories are more than what we think they are. They are not only for entertaining children and the unsuspecting masses. Myths, legends, epics have always been cleverly used as mediums of control and manipulation.

So never take stories for granted.


public education

Five Guaranteed Ways to Become More Lovable

puppy n mantis

Become like a cat or a puppy, cute and adorable without trying.

Become like a flower, confident in its beauty, whether it’s a rose or a sunflower.

Become like a tree, lofty yet grounded.

Become like the sun, warm and generous.

Become like the breeze, cool and refreshing.

black cat

 . . . meow . . .

Self-worth and Accomplishments

For most of us, self-worth is tied to our perception of our accomplishments. We feel less worthy when we have no accomplishment for the day, for the week, for the month, for the year, or in our entire lifetime. We want to do more, to accomplish more – so that we can prove to ourselves and to others that we are worthy – worthy of others’ attention, affection or love.

There is nothing wrong with reaching out for more. In fact, desire – the summoning of Spirit – is what calls us to move forward in life. And as we move forward, following what makes us tick, following our passion, our joy, we expand our Be-ing. The expansion of our Be-ing is our goal. But then there is no end in our expansion because we are infinite Beings on an eternal journey. So in effect, there is no real destination, no end point. The destination is the journey itself. So why not enjoy the present journey instead of living in an illusory future which is always out of reach?

There is nothing wrong with wanting to accomplish more, and more. It is OK to set a goal and reach for it, because it is in reaching for that goal that the inner life-force – seeking to be expressed externally – is stimulated and summoned. It is OK to accomplish so that we can feed our family, so that we can make our lives comfortable and so we could fully enjoy all that life has to offer.

And there is absolutely nothing wrong with proving our self-worth through our accomplishments and attainments. For a long time, this appeared to be the most natural process and it is the modality society believes in. It is indeed logical that when one is accomplished in something, say for example, one excelled as an artist, scientist, spiritual guru, businessman, scholar, etc, it is almost always that this person is looked-up to as someone worthy of our admiration, respect, and attention. But what if someone is perceived to have no accomplishments, or not accomplished enough? Is he or she not worthy of our respect, attention and affection by virtue of their being a valid expression of the God Source?

Accomplishments are something we use to compare ourselves with others. Once we compare ourselves with another, however, we are unnecessarily making life more difficult for each of us. Nobody is exactly alike. Another’s journey is different from yours – not superior not inferior, just different. Their accomplishments, or lack thereof, is maybe what is relevant to their current journey of self-discovery. You are not necessarily meant to exactly accomplish someone else’s accomplishments nor your accomplishments to be made a standard for everyone else to follow. Remember: what you value is not necessarily the same with what another person values. How you sing a song is not necessarily how another wants to sing the same song.

A sense of self-worth premised on accomplishments is an upstream journey. We believe that we would only feel our best and prove our worth after we finish a big project, or when we have a certain amount of money, or when we are in the relationship that we want, or when we have attained spiritual enlightenment. It is a perpetual struggle because the sense of self-worth we are trying to attain becomes elusive. We are always trying to get somewhere, yet we are never arriving. It is a long, precarious process, until we tire and give-up frustrated.

When we believe in our inherent self-worth regardless of our accomplishments, we are deliberately putting ourselves in an excellent starting position. This is because our full awareness of our self-worth becomes the very stable foundation upon which our confidence to pursue what we want to pursue and accomplish what we want to accomplish, is based on. Believing in our inherent self-worth thus makes our journey of accomplishing, even much easier.

If we come to think of it, accomplishments are actually only an excuse we use to believe in our self-worth. Our hard-to-please reasoning mind tends to fail to acknowledge that regardless of so-called accomplishments, we have always been worthy by virtue of our inherent divinity.