Today remind yourself of the importance of feast, toasting, kinship and hospitality. Keep the traditions of Aegir and his hall, remember all of the Gods and Goddesses eating, drinking, boasting and sharing with each other. Build your personal community today, strengthen the bonds of kinship. Relish your friendships.
On this day we also remind ourselves of the virtue of Love. Love is a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes that ranges from interpersonal affection to pleasure. Synonyms: affection, attachment, passion, or devotion.
"Love is the element which, though physically unseen, is as real as air or water. It is an acting, living, moving force… it moves in waves and currents like those of the ocean." - Prentice Mulford
The word 'love' can have a variety of individual and personal meanings. Your religious and spiritual belief and love of Spiritually. Interpersonal love such as the closeness of family members. A passionate desire for a special person like your partner, spouse or lover. Platonic love that defines a close and special friendship. What do you love?
And what is love as a virtue? The bestowing of unconditional love and having a positive impact on the lives of others. Showing a genuine concern for the good of others, with unselfish acts of kindness such as: compassion, caring, thoughtfulness, service, and other humanitarian and noble actions.
Love is truly the most powerful force of life, it ignites our emotions, guides us in a positive light and brings meaning to our lives. Love is the catalyst that bonds all other virtues that make up the content of good character. Without love, our hearts would be cold, our souls hollow and our lives would be empty and without purpose.
When we find ourselves angry or fearful, all love is not lost. We must turn our attention to the principle of love, which calls us to be gentle, kind and to treat others with respect despite the life-constricting emotions of anger and fear. This concept of love is what the ancient Greeks called Agape love - a love that honors all others.
Gary Chapman, in his book, Love as a Way of Life devotes a chapter to each of the seven characteristics of an authentically loving person: kindness, patience, forgiveness, courtesy, humility, generosity and honesty. These are not vague characteristics of a person; they are habits that we train ourselves to put into practice in our daily lives. These habits create profound satisfaction in our relationships. Cultivating these habits in all of our relationships requires we think of love as a principle of respect rather than a transient and unreliable emotion.
This practice is more relevant now than ever before because of the feelings of alienation and disconnect in our high-tech society. When we have love to give, we can express it with respect, kind words and actions, even when the conditions don't seem to warrant loving-kindness. To foster love, we have to be honest in little and big matters.
To demonstrate love, we can give our undivided attention whether we are at work or at home. Just silently listening and being present can be a loving gesture. Never forget that love can be applied to any problem. Since this life is short, savor moments by being fun-loving and relishing connections with others. Each day, make a conscious choice to live lovingly and express love to yourself and others.
Glad Yuletide to Everyone. Hail!