I am writing booklets to present the ABCs of Love to various audiences as relevant to their life experiences. My goal in writing these booklets is to encourage all of us to adopt the principles and practices of love to nurture ourselves as whole persons. Only as whole persons will we discover within ourselves the natural capacity to live in peace and harmony with each other as diversely individualized expressions of universal humanity. Wholeness < Oneness > Wholeness. Unconditional love is the missing link that will empower us to live in peace, hope and joy with ourselves and with Nature as well.
The ABCs of Love guides us into the universal healthcare process in which we are all capable of participating without concern for insurance premiums or medical costs. No amount of external pressure applied by laws or force of any kind will solve the riddle of universal health, justice and liberty we seek to solve. We need first an internal transformation to produce and sustain the external changes our hearts desire. As within, so without. To achieve our shared dreams of a sustainable humanity living in harmony with nature, we must nurture within us our native nature and cease to substitute the ego’s false identity and idols. Please let me know if you have any ideas to offer about how to make love a more universal practice among us as our highest priority.
One booklet is addressed to all people who want to reduce interpersonal violence and planetary exploitation. It presents a curriculum for studying, downloading, installing and using a new “operating system” for individual personal development and for our collective relationship networks. The text of the first draft of this booklet can be viewed at The ABCs of Love for Health, Justice & Liberty: Our Heart’s Wisdom Points Us Beyond Interpersonal Violence and Planetary Exploitation. The cover and Toolkit of six illustrations referred to in this text can be viewed at Cover and full Toolkit for The ABCs of Love for All. I did not place the illustrations within the text so that readers may refer to them as they read various pages of the text.
The other booklet addresses specifically followers of Jesus because that is my path of faith. It presents the same curriculum from the perspective of those who believe in Jesus. The text of the first draft of this version can be viewed at The ABCs of Love for Jesus’ Followers: Let’s See Where Wisdom Points Us. The cover and the Toolkit of six illustrations referred to in the text can be viewed at Cover plus Toolkit for The ABCs for Jesus’ Followers. Again I did not place the illustrations within the text so that readers may refer to them as they read various pages of the text.
According to your preference for reviewing material addressed to a more general audience or to followers of Jesus, please feel free to download these files for your convenience in reviewing this material. I would appreciate receiving any observations, comments, questions, suggestions, etc. about how to revise these manuscripts. Please address your remarks to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am grateful for your investing your own time, talents and energy in joining me to make these booklets as readable, relevant and helpful to seekers of truth and love as possible.
One way of looking at The ABCs of Love is that it presents an operating system for individuals who link up within humanity’s networks. If we are ever going to develop sustainable solutions for the violence and planetary exploitation we are now witnessing, we need an upgraded operating system that resists hacking and corruption by the ego. The ABCs of Love functions as such an operating system, both for the development of individual hearts and minds as “processors of emotions and ideas” and for the development of networks of individuals who intentionally form “villages” (groups or communities of any size) capable of not only raising children within an ecosystem of unconditional love but of also raising us all beyond the ego’s downward dragging and dehumanizing tyranny. I invite you to consider beta-testing this material by learning to facilitate groups who study and practice it. I will help you learn to be a facilitator and, when practical, serve with you as a co-facilitator until you find others to co-facilitate with you. Co-facilitation enhances the value of The ABCs of Love because it presents a model not only of individuals who use the principles in their own self-nurturing but also of relationship dynamics reflecting love’s principles and practices.
I am looking for sponsors for my booklets as my personal resources are limited. Someday, especially with the help of others who believe in this enterprise and join with me as co-authors, I (as part of a “we”) hope to write booklets about love for specific audiences in need of recovering from shame that the ego imposes upon us as a penalty for failing to measure up to the ego’s social standards. Audiences that currently come to mind are
- Ex-offenders – youth, women and men who have experienced criminal prosecution and/or incarceration and now seek to participate in society with maximum helpfulness and dignity
- Those hoping to overcome the pain of having been the recipient of any form of abuse and/or neglect and now seeking to transform that pain into power to help others heal
- Those of any age who are recovering from alcoholism or any other addiction/dependency
- Adult children of families impacted by the dynamics of alcoholism, addictions and/or mental/emotional ill-health
- Former foster children and adults who experienced adoption as children
- Immigrants and refugees
- LGBTQA community members and
- Others whom groups who enjoy popularity, privilege and power have classified as second class citizens, disrespected, undervalued or neglected, allowed to experience such mistreatment or otherwise assumed to be and treated as less than privileged class citizens.
If you are a member or ally of one or more of these or similarly disrespected and undervalued communities (or as an individual have been mistreated in any manner), feel free to contact me with any suggestions you may have, including suggestions about gathering additional resources to promote publication and distribution of The ABCs of Love. Whatever good comes of sharing The ABCs of Love, it will come forth as the result of collaborative efforts far beyond my own personal contributions.
Although the process is currently on hold, I am also writing a longer book titled The ABCs of Love: Healing the Violence of Modern Society. Here is the current version of the cover for this book: Current cover for The ABCs of Love. Through this book I am introducing concepts, principles and practices that transform lifestyles from fear-based to love-based. Unconditional love is our natural social environment that we learn to tune out of our awareness as we grow up. We tune it out because we’re taught to substitute the ego’s fears for our natural freedom to love and be loved in return. Our typical social training at the hands of those who identify with their egos changes our lifestyle orientation from love to fear because we believe this change is necessary to belong and not be alone. Responding naturally as cooperative beings, we do tend to become temporarily the products of our fear-saturated, emotionally toxic environment. We need to intentionally detoxify emotionally by lavishing care upon our hearts. As we change our social environments and adopt a renewing, upgraded emotionally healthy orientation to life, we can re-emerge as our naturally loving and lovable selves. Just as an acorn does not need to be told how to become an oak tree once it’s planted in a nourishing environment, we naturally become loving and lovable trees of life once we nurture those qualities within ourselves and re-root ourselves in a social environment that encourages us to develop and express our true nature as wholeheartedly loving beings.
In our natural hunger for social approval, we mistakenly accept the ego’s artificial ideas and practice them until we accept them as our beliefs and make them our habits. In the process, we form our own egos and identify with them just as our social trainers did before us. Under the influence of ego-driven social training, our orientation to life becomes increasingly limited by fear instead of constantly liberated by love. Within fear’s orientation, we fail to foster joy, deeply abiding peace of mind, heights of wholehearted meaningful satisfaction and heart-nurturing intimacy as our normal experience and instead hunger for these qualities of life as if they will always elude us. We wind up stuck in quicksand, where every struggle for greater satisfaction only causes us to sink deeper into the bog rather than soar free. To free ourselves from the frustratingly futile struggle into which the ego seduces us, we must unlearn the ego’s ways and adopt love’s ways as our own. We must strive for Authenticity, develop Bonds of trust and Cooperate with Courage, Compassion, Creativity, Curiosity and Commitment in the process of transformation no matter how much we may fear change or fear trying something that feels so new and yet also feels so good.
Lessons in the ABCs of Love remind us of our natural orientation to love’s power. They present concepts of wholeness that allow our minds to envision an alternative structure for our lives that is not dependent upon what fear has taught us in the past. Through our current lessons in applying the ABCs of Love, we learn again not to be dependent upon fear’s past lessons and release our future to be far more promising than our past ever was. If we don’t examine the lessons of our past to root out the ego’s teachings and restructure our lives within love’s orientation, we remain trapped by fear and our future replicates our past.
Think of the difference this way: as the builder of our lives, ego lays tracks for our train of thought that ultimately run in a circular pattern, doubling back and creating a closed system of thought ruled by fear of not conforming to the circle of social connections we’ve established as our comfort zone or familiar territory. As fear comes to dominate our thinking, this circle and the zone it includes may even shrink smaller from what it once was when we were younger, bolder, more curious and less tied down. Love restructures the route for the tracks upon which our train of thought runs, introducing alternatives that fear does not envision or allow. Under love’s oversight, our train of thought need no longer run only in circles and our comfort zone need no longer be our unwitting trap or prison.
While fear has taught us to see and accept only fragments of our true nature and to try to force-fit those incomplete fragments into a working model for life (as unbalanced and easily upset as it may be), wholeness introduced by the ABCs of Love shows us the full picture and outlines all of life’s elements within a sturdy yet flexible and resilient structure that makes sense of both the fragments we’ve been displaying to others as “us” and those we’ve hidden away and hoped others would never notice or discover about us. Ironically, once we embrace all of who we are, we discover that we keep our balance more readily and are upset far less frequently. In short, wholeness presents us with an alternative to the tiny, teetering image we’ve been hoping others will accept as “us” and frees us instead to step from behind our shaky public image to enjoy being true to our natural and more complete self. Authenticity is not only more enriching and rewarding. It also more naturally sustainable and truly attainable in the first place. Two of the teaching tools I use are the Wholeness Archetype – Universal Human Nature Blueprint and the Healthy Emotions Map found at the links provided. At this link is the Introduction to The ABCs of Love – draft 15.01, my current draft of the Introduction to The ABCs of Love: Healing the Violence of Modern Society.
The key to our success in making our transition from fear-based living to love-based living is our will power. In terms of wholeness, our will is our “volitional potential” that we develop either in favor of the ego and fear or in favor of authenticity and love. Our free will holds all the power we need to be successful in unlearning and learning all we need to unlearn and learn to reduce the influence of fear and increase the influence of love throughout our lifestyle. Fear has imprisoned our will so that it is no longer free. Love sets our will free again. As we choose love over fear, we gradually emerge from fear’s imprisoning hold on our hearts and minds to enjoy a love-enriched, fruitfully productive and joyously celebrated life.
During one-on-one or group lessons about the ABCs of Love, I will introduce you to key concepts by which to learn to use your “willingness to love and be loved” to unlock your most promising future. As you practice these concepts, you choose to –
- Enrich your life
- Enhance your love
- Enthuse your laughter
You’ll benefit from mastering the ABCs of Love if you want to
- Feel good while being true to yourself
- Gain freedom from pride, shame, guilt and blame
- Cultivate greater courage to love and be loved
- Grow beyond heartaches and losses
- Honor sensitivity, empathy and compassion
- Ensure justice and liberty for others
- Transform boredom or self-doubt into rebirth
- Enhance your creativity and passion
- Impregnate your imagination with hope
- Feel more significant and appreciated
- Relax with greater peace of mind and joy
- Experience maximum personal power
Qualifications to participate in lessons about the ABCs of Love
You must be at least 16 years old to enroll in a class and at least 17 to receive tutoring. Parents may accompany a child or children under 17 but at least 14 years old if both child(ren) and parent(s) intend to participate. The only other requirements for participation are a genuine desire to learn about the topics presented, a willingness and capacity to participate with focused attention on the topics offered and a reasonable ability to understand and communicate in English. If you do not communicate in English but will provide a translator to enable you to participate, I will consider that option.
Cost of lessons in the ABCs of Love
Typically I charge by the hour based on a sliding scale that takes into account your ability to pay and motivation for learning. I also am willing to allow you to pay in installments over time or later when you are better able to pay. I’ll also consider teaching you if you are committed to community service that benefits others significantly. The cost of lessons covers introductory handouts and materials I supply. If you want to learn about the ABCs of Love but believe that you cannot afford to pay, please let me know. We’ll talk about some alternative arrangement suited to your ability to pay and circumstances. I’m very flexible in that regard.
Enrolling in tutoring or a class on the ABCs of Love as convenient to you
The locations and times for classes will be arranged based on inquiries received from people interested in participating. If a class has already been scheduled, its location and time is posted below. If you’ve not yet expressed interest in a scheduled class, please contact me to express interest. Enrollment in each class is limited and made available on a first-come, first-served basis. If you want to encourage me to set up a class at a time and place convenient to you, please let me know. Please also contact me if you want to arrange for one-on-one tutoring at a time and place convenient to you.
Classes in the ABCs of Love in your own home, workplace or community gathering place
Scheduling a class or series of classes for friends, family, colleagues and/or members of your spiritual community will create a unique opportunity for folks you know to enjoy the benefits that learning about the ABCs of Love offers. If you are interested in setting up a single class or a series of classes in your own home, workplace, spiritual community or other gathering place, please contact me. We can work out an arrangement suited to whatever occasion and location you have in mind. You can enliven any social gathering by including the ABCs of Love as an opportunity for those who gather to learn what their hearts are likely to be longing to learn.
© Art Nicol 2017