How to Love Everything Does Not Mean that We Have to Like Everything
Have you ever noticed that there is a difference between “like” and “love”?
Often these terms are used as if they are the same thing. To me it never felt that way. But just recently I noticed the actual difference.
The difference between like and love
Let’s take a cup of coffee, for example. I prefer dark, slow roasted, fair trade, organic Arabica coffee with flavours of chocolate and vanilla. Once, I went to a fancy coffee place and ordered an elegant special. The coffee they served me was of great quality. It had an apple-like flavour – bright with a smooth acidity. Very unique. I did not like it at all and left most of it for my husband to drink.
Do I reject the coffee plant which produced that fancy coffee bean? Or the people who lovingly harvested the coffee? Or the people who created the roast? Not at all. I love the plant for growing those beans. I have high respect for the people who are harvesting the coffee. And I admire the coffee roasters for a fancy, well created coffee.
I dare say that is a lot of love, right there. I just did not like to drink the coffee.
There is another aspect that gives us a hint: Judgement.
Do I judge the coffee for this elegant flavour? Or the people who made it? Or the people who served it? Not at all. There is no judgement. At the most, there is admiration for the variety of flavours available in a coffee bean.
Why it is important to stand in for my own dislikes
Why is the difference between “like” and “love” important?
Because it means that it is ok to dislike something. We dislike things and situations all the time. And that is ok. It does not even mean that we lack love for the things we dislike.
Dislike merely tells us that something is not for our greatest good.”
Let’s stay with the example of the coffee a little longer:
I did not like this bright coffee with the elegant acidity because my body cannot take too much acidity. It’s not good for me. The taste of bright coffee causes a warning signal in my system saying: “Caution: Too much acidity!” It’s ok for me to not like it. It is even good for me. And it was good for my husband, too, because he can deal much better with acidity and enjoyed my cup of coffee a lot.
How dislikes can serve as a sign post back on my path
It’s true, of course: When we feel dislike, it gives us a chance to take a look at our judgements and if there are any, to clear things up.
If the dislike persists, it might be a sign that we are not quite aligned with the path of our heart, anymore. It may tell us: “Caution: This is not good for your system!” Or “Caution: This is not for your greatest good!”
And hey, isn’t the greatest good of each individual part of the greatest good for all?”
It is a wonderful gift to love everything unconditionally. And sometimes, allowing ourselves to dislike something can help us with that.
Have you experienced situations in your life where standing in for your dislikes has helped you to align more with the love in your heart? Would you like to share that insight in the comments?Much love, Steffi