I wanted to share this quote from my favorite book today. If you have ever wondered why you always end up in a relationship that makes you suffer, the author Michael Brown explains it very clearly in this quote. His book, The Presence Process, is a collection of amazing insights into our human experience and a system of practical steps how to consciously change our emotional imprinting that we received as children from our surrounding. This book is changing my life, slowly but surely.
“We fail in each attempt to obtain the unconditional attention we seek because unconditional love isn’t like money – isn’t something we earn. Love isn’t something achieved through merit. We don’t qualify for love. Love just is. Love is our birthright. Love is what we already are.
During childhood, the example of love set by our parents’ interaction with us, with each other, and with others becomes our primary definition of love. This is the automatic consequence of emotional imprinting. For this reason, whenever we seek to manifest an experience of love for ourselves as adults, we unconsciously manufacture a physical, mental, and emotional scenario designed to recreate the emotional resonance we experienced during our childhood interaction with our parents. This resonance doesn’t have to be comfortable or in any way pleasant, only similar and hence familiar.
For example, if as a child we received abuse when we required love, then the felt-resonance associated with abuse became part of our childhood definition of love. Consequently, whenever we feel a need for love as adults, we manifest an experience that unfolds in such a manner as to at some point include this abusive felt-resonance. This happens unconsciously, automatically. Why? Because this is the only way we know how to get what our imprinted condition leads us to assume love is. However, because of its condition, the love we end u receiving hurst.
On a conscious level, we may then ask, “Why does this keep happening to me?” The reason we keep manifesting the same hurtful experiences is that we don’t know any better. This is the predicament emotional imprinting perpetuates. This is the open wound in the collective heart of humanity. This is why so many of us assume love hurts. But hurting is a condition, whereas love isn’t – it’s a state.
Throughout The Presence Process, we are gradually taught how to perceive beyond the limitations of our imprint-driven interpretations. We are taught how to grow up emotionally. The consequence of this emotional development is that we begin lifting the conditions set in place by our childhood experience. As these conditions lift, we entertain a different perception of our experience. This different perception isn’t fuelled by our unintegrated emotional charge, but is accessed through present moment awareness.
Confirmation we are awakening into present moment awareness comes in the insights we receive about the predicament of our shared human condition. One of these is that without exception, everyone we encounter, no matter what their behaviour, is seeking the experience of unconditional love. Even if they are being hateful, what we are witnessing is a misguided cry for love. “
The Presence Process