I Want Love: Elton John and the Human Condition

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Elton John – I Want Love (2001)

As we get to experience more of life we start to experience more of our human limits, limits often born of the wounds we carry. We are born free, open, and vulnerable. We are also born into a human world where the people around us are wounded and limited to some extent and attempting to relate, work and get on with life as they can. Childhood, for all of us, is about the wonder, discovery, and openness of infancy being taken over to some degree by the struggle to exist, survive and thrive, in this new, unfamiliar, and threatening adult world. The limits of those around us (limits born of their wounds) are experienced by us, even imposed on us. Soon we ourselves are growing in the ways of human woundedness and limit.

As we grow many of us sense, deep down in us, that something is wrong. The limit we experience could be different, should be different. We begin to long for something else, even rage for it. We don’t want to be limited by the wounds and conditioning we carry, and those of others. What is going on? What do we long for that we cannot, seemingly, attain?

Christian spirituality has long asked these questions. Humanity has long asked these questions. The answer, broadly speaking and as Christianity sees it, is that, as Elton John sings – we want love. But we desire a love that is not wounded in the way that we are; one that won’t break us down, fence us in; one that is not fearful of nor rejecting the human struggle; one that loves us because of the scars around our hearts; a love that is ever faithful and committed to us because we are wounded and not all we can be; a love that wants to love us into being simply and freely ourselves. This is the kind of love that, deep down, we want to live in and be a part of. A happy soul is a soul that is living and loving, in some small way, from this kind of love.

Can any human be the source, the creator of this kind of love? Christian spirituality says no. Christian spirituality affirms that this kind of love, this dynamic of full and perfect enfolding, this kind of love can only be divine. Any human being who desires openness to this divine love and wants this love to be operative in their lives, is a human being becoming open to the reality of their own healing. As we let ourselves feel the reality of our wounds while growing in divine love, this love heals us and sets us free to grow in being the unique and wonderful gift of love that we already are.

This love is not romantic in the sense that all it wants to do is feel good and stay on the surface of life. Divine love comes from our depths and invites us, ever so gently, into the depths. As this happens we discover that life has character and adds character when the rough of life can be engaged by us. Sometimes a life of this love ain’t pretty, however we soon realise that it’s the experience of this love that leads to true life.

Perhaps the greatest gift we can be given is to have in our lives someone else who is growing in this divine love and wants to share it. Naming this love as divine is not necessary for growing in it. Experience is everything.

Christian Meditation is one way in which our soul, our psyche, can grow in divine love and it’s healing. As we practice giving attention to the mantra and the mind settles enough, we come to experience – in the soul – this profound and delicious total embrace of divine love. Sometimes it may fill us with deep peace, a deep sense of healing. Other times all we may feel are the deep wounds we carry. All this is okay. What is important is that, at the time of meditation, we refrain from analysis, from questioning and thought as we can. These things will only get in the way of what divine love wants to do: heal all of the inner of us. Faithfulness to the mantra is a way of growing in openness and trust to divine love and what this love wants to do. In this way, all of our soul – the rational and the emotional – are being healed and transformed by and for love.