Are love and need inextricably linked together? Can love stand on its own without need? Over the last year, I’ve reflected on the relationship between love and need. I’ve come to conclude the two are indeed connected in a formula that can be either positive or negative. First, let me provide the two ways the formula can be expressed.
Positive: “I need you because I love you”
Negative: “I love you because I need you”
In the positive, when we truly love another, we feel a need to express that love. Love flows harmoniously and generates energy that is self-perpetuating. It’s like the battery in your car. When the engine is running, it continues to recharge the battery. Turn off the car, and the battery is waiting there to once again get the engine started. We experience a heartfelt need to share our love and experience bursts of positive energy when “I need you because I love you”. When two people are connected in this way, the flow feeds itself in a continuous and virtuous cycle.
On the other hand, love rooted in self-serving need is conditional. When our needs are no longer met, we withhold or withdraw love. This would be similar to using a battery to charge your engine but never recharging it – sooner or later that battery will cease to support you. In truth, this is not love at all. Someone who takes without giving in return will someday find the battery dead. At that point, they may simply discard the relationship and find a new source. Until they change the formula, they’ll continue to experience dead batteries.
Relationships where one person is wired to the positive and the other to the negative is like having the cables switched up. Sooner or later, something breaks down because the flow of energy is impeded. Healthy relationships have to be wired correctly to function. It can be as simple as checking both ends of the connection and properly reconnecting. In some instances however, there may be no way to make it right as if the cables weren’t meant to fit together.
Over the last year, I’ve been called to evaluate many of my closest relationships. I’ve asked myself two questions.
Is my love for this person rooted in self-serving need?
Do I believe their love for me is rooted in need or real love?
In each relationship, I evaluated both ends. I asked myself if I was bringing authentic love and sincerely wanted to express it or was I drawing energy from them only to meet my own wants/needs. I would then look at it from the other perspective. However, because I can’t read another’s heart, this required me to share my perceptions and feelings and ask the other person to do the same. I also challenged them to carefully evaluate their own response to the first question.
In some cases, I had to admit I was the one applying the negative formula. I then had to decide if I was willing to change the flow and if not, I needed to let go. There were some relationships where I had to conclude the other person was wired in a negative way and that wasn’t likely going to change. Here also, I had to let go. In many instances where either or both of us was connected in a negative way, it was a matter of being humble enough to admit it and take steps to switch the cables around. I’ll admit, it’s easier to take a wrench and move cables on a battery then it is to change what has been in some cases years of relationship. This process isn’t over yet. In fact, I’m finding it important to evaluate and reevaluate on a regular basis to make sure each relationship is rooted in authenticity.
It’s common practice to “jump” a dead battery by connecting it to a functioning one. It’s critical to get the jumper cables connected to the right terminals in order to bring the dead battery back to life. Get it wrong and you have the potential of ruining both the good and bad batteries. Relationships are no different. We all find our batteries depleted at times and need a charge from someone. Once we bring the failed battery back to life, flow is reestablished. Asking for a “jump” every once in a while is fine, but relationships where one person constantly needs a restart won’t last long. As I examined my relationships, I realized that some of them simply needed a “jump”. But before doing so, we did a reset to ensure we had the cables connected properly. To do that, we examined the root values of the relationship and reaffirmed our commitment to them.
I also discovered another way the formula can be expressed and experienced. In this particular case the formula is not only negative it’s absolutely destructive!
I love you when I need you
This is nothing short of manipulation. Some of the relationships I examined were like this. In a few cases, there were those whose love for me was “evident” only when they needed something from me. These were relationships I decided to sever unless/until the person was prepared to change.
Does the God of the universe come to us in the same way or is the formula one of human love? I’m still pondering this question, but I can see where God interacts with us out of need to express pure love. After all, God’s love is experienced when it is shared. I believe God may in fact need us as a means to express eternal and unconditional love. As to the question of whether or not love exists on its own without need, I leave that for deeper reflection.
I believe in the transformative power of human connection to elevate joy, restore balance, and support inner healing as you seek your highest purpose. My purpose in life is to be a guide, to share the wisdom of the Universe I’ve been gifted with, and to see others succeed. Nothing brings me greater joy than to see others step into their purpose in a vibrant and highly energetic way.
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