Every summer solstice for the past 15 years or so, a group of my close friends have gathered on a remote beach in northwest Scotland. Initially, we went there to scatter the ashes of another dear friend who was tragically killed in a motorcycle crash. Back in 1990, we vowed to return every year to remember our young friend and his extraordinary life. He was one of those rare people who burned the candle at both ends – who lived entirely for the moment, who died as he had lived, explosively and with great vigour.
Now, many years on, we still visit that remote beach, where we camp at the water’s edge, sit around the midnight fires, plunge into the icy waters, watch the Hebridean skies and take some time to dream. You never quite know who will turn up – but not a single year has gone by without someone holding our vigil of the midnight sun. It has become one of the few certainties in my own life, and even if I myself am unable to make the long journey north, I draw comfort from knowing that someone I love is holding our dream, no matter what the wayward Scottish weather may be doing…
The Summer Solstice is the zenith of our year, and as with all things human, that carries its price. Inherent in zenith is decline. Contained within life is death. The only constant in any of this life is Love, and that is why I have decided to write about Love today. There are times when logic needs to be thrown out of the window – when charts and scrolls and systems should be put down, and midsummer is one of those times. You cannot love and think at the same time. It is just one of those things. When someone close to you dies, or is suffering, can you find any logic in that? There is no solace to be found from the mental realm.
I live in a culture where real love is considered to be embarrassing – where people are generally afraid to speak openly about their feelings. I live in a culture where sharing is no longer commonplace – where people distrust their own neighbours – where love is repressed. I am not just talking about England, but more or less the entire Western world. Love is about giving, and it is also about gambling. When your heart is moved – by anything at all – a friend in tears, a moment on TV, a suffering animal – anything – that is a sacred moment. How many of those moments will you be able to count when you are old and almost gone? It is a great and foolhardy risk to love. But if you do not take that risk, what is the point in being here at all?
As we track the passing of the year, there are universal reminders of the sacred – like the summer solstice, and at other times there are personal reminders – like when something happens to us on an ordinary day and in that moment we suddenly come alive – we suddenly break out of the numbness and feel what it’s like to be alive again. A wild spirit breaks out of us, through the hard edges of our conditioning and all of a sudden, there is sunlight inside our bodies…and then, sooner or later, its gone again, as swiftly as it came, and we are back to the humdrum and the tax returns, shopping, worrying – thinking.
For most people, this is life. A few bursts of sunlight amidst a generally grey backdrop. But we all know it doesn’t have to be this way – that there have always been people in the world who live in a different way – in a fresh and vibrant way – whose lives are utterly original, spontaneous and dazzling – even amidst the mundane. We all know someone like this. How are they able to live like that? Of course, the answer is Love. They must have found something or someone in life that they absolutely utterly love. That is enough. That is the only requisite for life – to love something or someone. If you do not or cannot, then you are not really alive. When you find that thing, or that person, my advice is cling to it for dear life! Don’t try and be all Buddhist and detached and safe. We have to hurl ourselves into love – if detachment arises, it will arise after we have been so burned that there is nothing left of us. Wisdom cannot be a goal – it can only arise after Love has exploded.
Over the past year, for some unaccountable reason, I have been learning about bees. I am big on bees. When the knowledge that I call the Venus Sequence arrived in my life, a knowledge based only on Love, all these bees came with it. It is the strangest thing. Anyway, bees are truly magical role models for us humans. In a nutshell, here is what I have learned from them:
The Bees are our thoughts. The Hive is our body. The world is the orchard. The flowers and blossoms are our experiences in the world. As the bees draw the pollen from the flowers, so we have to draw as much sustenance as we can from the experiences that come our way. Like the bees, our thoughts always return to the Hive, our body, and it is there that they store the precious substance they have gathered from their adventures. Deep within the Hive, an alchemical process takes place, as life is broken down and its essence is extracted and refined. All this work is done by the bees. Those wonderful, busy bees.
But there is one more thing. Within every hive there is a heart. This heart is the Queen. Collectively, the bees serve the Queen. If the Queen is removed from the hive, or if she dies, the entire colony will soon die. The Queen bee actually secretes a physical substance that galvanises every individual bee into service of the whole, and every individual bee visits the Queen to sip of this substance. The substance of course, is Love.
Here in the West, our most natural lineage is actually one of Love. Our greatest teacher is represented in the figure of Christ, whose sole teaching was about Love. To be strong in love you have to honour your own heart above all else, just as the bees serve the Queen. But the greatest secret of all takes place deep within the hive of our bodies – as our thoughts work to extract that vital ambrosia from our own lives.
No matter what cards we have been dealt, no matter how harsh our suffering or how steep our learning curve – the purpose of it all is Love.
To find out more about your Venus Sequence, you can visit www.genekeys.com and explore Part 2 of the Golden Path Program.
The 64 Names of Love
“Love is the only name that you will keep forever”
This selection of excerpts from Richard Rudd’s popular course delivered in Victoria, Canada, journeys deeply into the heart of all things.
Using his signature poetic style and anecdotal stories, Richard Rudd guides us to our own individual points of breakthrough. An insightful and practical reflection into relationships and a compass to the truth and nature of Love.