What a simple and fun phrase. And yet, this statement can become so meaningful when we look a little deeper.
I first heard this line in 2012, when I had the pleasure of attending the incredible event: Lightning in a Bottle (LIB). You see, this was the year I was introduced to ‘festival culture’ and it radically changed my life. I was embarking on a journey of learning, loving, and transformation.
“I Don’t Know You but I Love You” (or IDKYBILY for short), was introduced to me as I was walking down the road at LIB towards my camp. A young woman sat under a black easy-up cover that had a banner across and read these words. I was intrigued, so I wandered over and met Charlene (or Charlizzle as many know her). We had a great little chat where she explained what I would call her ‘movement,’ gave me a sticker, and told me about the talk she was giving later in the event.
I was lucky enough to catch some of her talk, and soon after the festival delved into what it was all about. Charlene’s message is that we can change the world through changing merely how we see others. I Don’t Know You but I Love You embodies this message wholly, because it embraces the act of greeting all others with all of your love.
When you put it that way, it can be difficult to imagine doing this for some. The word ‘love’ scares some people, so they won’t say it to strangers or people they aren’t intimate with on some level. To instead give your love away, not willy-nilly per-say, but with intention and acceptance, we can open ourselves up to more receiving of love then we have ever imagined.
That’s what I’ve come here to talk about. While this piece is a tribute to my good friend and her wonderful message, I also wish to bring it back to practical application into our own lives. It is easy to take awe of an idea that you love, but to see it manifest within your daily life is a powerful experience. Let’s explore some ways we can live in the philosophy of IDKYBILY.
I explore the word Love many times throughout my articles. I believe it to be a powerful and wondrous force in our Universe. Never could I tell another person what love will mean for them. However, we can perhaps all agree that Love is indefinable. Or that it is completely unique for each individual. These could be called Truths. Love could also fall under the category of Truth, if we all agree that it exists. In doing so, let’s say that it is something we can be in, give, receive, embody, or just BE. So, would you prefer to receive fear (this can be separation, judgment, disgust, or otherwise) or love? Therefore, what do you think others would prefer to receive? If we drop the notion that people have to become worthy of love, that everyone deserves to feel it, then why shouldn’t we become agents of sending love rather than fear?
Yes I said ALL. I don’t think that IDKYBILY only applies to humans by the way. Whenever we come into the presence of another being; plant, insect, animal, human, spirit, what have you, we have two choices: to react (with fear usually), or to accept (usually only with love). So, how do you want to greet all those whom you encounter? Do you want to treat them with differing levels of respect because they represent different entities? Or do you want to see them as equal because they dwell here with us as well? It is your choice, as I said, but if we ALL try and greet ALL others with respect, acceptance, and love, won’t this world be a better place?
ALL of Your LOVE
Is there a scale for how much love you give? Why? I believe that our hearts have something of a gravitational field (due to its high electromagnetism), and so we can be drawn to others with the same frequency. This attraction can be increased by opening your ‘heart chakra.’ If you aren’t familiar with ancient Indian knowledge, the heart chakra is the one responsible for giving and receiving love and can be blocked by grief. The seven chakras are a spiraling staircase of our kundalini energy (or what might be called Chi, inner power, spirit, etc). When the heart chakra is blocked, due to a fear that grief might return, we block off the higher areas of our being; self-expression, inner vision (third eye), and Universality (experiencing Oneness, self-realization, Heaven, Enlightenment, etc). Opening the heart fully is a gateway to higher levels of being, and honestly just a more aware, expressive, and complete human experience. Finding the full depths of your love can and will be one of the best experiences of your life. Try and find it every day, just so that you can give it away!
Sometimes, when we get into a spirit of giving, we can start to feel ourselves becoming drained. This is natural and can happen to anyone. There is no way to ‘prevent’ it, but we can be sure that we reserve loving energy for ourselves first, in order to maintain presence and vitality. This is part of the loving intention that we must apply. The second part is equally as important. When we give anything; a card, a gift we bought or made, a favor, loving energy, whatever- we cannot expect anything in return. That defeats the purpose of giving (at least in my opinion). There is another idea that I love known as ‘Pay it Forward.’ This just means to give the gifts at your disposal, and even give what is most dear to you, for you are growing another’s capacity for receiving, and therefore the entire Universe grows at the same time. This action you have taken will come back to you in ways you never imagined and the power that you feel from your energy coming back will shock you. Try it out, I think you’ll like it.
Accepting the Unknown
Should be the easiest, always the hardest. We are afraid of what will happen next. What will they say after I tell them “I Don’t Know You but I Love You?” Will they accept me back? Will they return the love? The truth is, we will never know… but who cares? If you feel your love is lost on someone, then maybe you aren’t even giving them a chance to receive it. Love bombs sort of work, but it can be more productive to see the person for who they are beneath it all, and say what you love about THAT. That is their essence, and if you respond to it rather than their appearance or attitude, you may just bring that spark to life and fully engage with another being. The sharing of love opens both of your hearts and you can move to communication beyond the common-day drab.
Realize that fear exists, and that we all can feel it. However, when you give love first to yourself, and then have the confidence to give it to others, you will see a radical difference in your daily interactions. Let people surprise you, don’t shut yourself down and shut others out. Walk around with a smile on your face, even if you can’t think of a damn thing to smile about! Then you’ll start laughing and see that there’s nothing to NOT smile about. Life is damn good, no matter your situation. Most of it is just made up drama that we tell ourselves to feed our ego instead of just enjoying the world around us and being authentically present.
I hope you can see the wisdom in the words of IDKYBILY, for they have brought about massive change in my life, and it’s only a snowball of good things to come. For all of us. This is just a heads up; I love ALL of you, and soon you’ll all love each other too ❤ Until next time loves. Namaste.