Love wholeheartedly, be surprised, give thanks and praise – then you will discover the fullness of your life.Br. David Steindl-Rast
In the English language, we use the word love to describe our deep affection toward everything from children to chocolate, beloved friends to favorite songs. While a wide range of words might seem more appropriate – some languages have many words for love – there’s something wonderful about the capacity of one word to convey so many distinct and nuanced meanings. It is testament to the richness of the many forms that love can take – as affection or appreciation, compassion or desire, or – in the public sphere – the motivation to improve our communities and the world.
It seems safe to say that all of us want love in our lives. We want to be loved, feel love, and express our love. But amidst the busyness and challenge of daily life, we can neglect to appreciate, nurture, and communicate the love that exists in our lives and in the world. Whether it feels abundant or in short supply, the presence of love is worthy of our attention and care.
We invite you to journey through this free 7-day practice focused on attending to love in its many forms. Each day offers a guided reflection and practice. By turning our attention to love – witnessing it, receiving it, and expressing it – we become more awake to life, both our own and the life all around us.
The light of love is always in us, no matter how cold the flame. It is always present, waiting for the spark to ignite, waiting for the heart to awaken.bell hooks
We recommend you bookmark this page and move through the practice days at your own pace. You might move through the practice alone or consider exploring it with others, as part of a group experience.
Day 1: Celebrate the Love That is Alive in the World
Being awake to all that is alive and thriving in the world is a guiding principle of grateful living. Beginning today and continuing through the week, make time to seek out, notice, and celebrate the places where love is alive in the world.
Day 2: Tune In to What You Truly Love
Today’s practice offers an invitation to bring yesterday’s outward gaze on the world back toward ourselves and to tune in to what we truly love. If we’re fortunate, we sometimes feel a perfect resonance between what we love to do and how we spend our days. Other times, there’s a gap.
Day 3: Shine Your Love on Another
Today’s invitation is simple on the surface but can feel profound in practice: Choose one person in your life to be the focus of your love today. This of course doesn’t preclude shining your love on many, only that there’s one particular person who will receive a bit of your extra care and love today.
Day 4: Love the Earth
Today’s practice centers on turning our attention to all the ways that the earth nourishes us. While we depend on the extraordinary labor of our fellow humans to transform the earth’s bounty into the necessities and luxuries of our lives, the earth’s raw offerings – the source of all that sustains us – are staggering in their abundance.
Day 5: Love in Action
Today’s practice is an invitation to turn your attention to a person or entity that is embodying love in action, express your appreciation for their work in the world, and consider how you yourself are inspired by love to take action in the world.
Day 6: Love on the Hard Days
When faced with struggle, loss, or grief – or even just the small frustrations of daily life and relationships – we may find it harder to operate from a place of love. Today’s practice is an invitation to identify one specific difficulty in your life that could be eased or softened by intentionally approaching it with love.
Day 7: Love Yourself
We began the week celebrating the ways that love is alive and abundant in the world around us. As we come to the close of our seven days, how can we love ourselves with the same intention and generosity with which we’re trying to love the world?
Feel moved to support future practices?
We warmly welcome contributions!
Feature image by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona