In the past I can honestly say that I had little to no genuine appreciation for men.
I used to see men more for the roles they played, or what they could do for me, or for their family. Sometimes I was aware that some men should be avoided as they gave me unwanted looks or attention that made me feel uncomfortable. At other times I gave my power away to men as I thought they knew more than me or they were forceful and imposing with the way they delivered their knowledge.
To add to this I also had very little appreciation for myself, and women in general too. I liked what I saw in each gender and thought some things were nice or pleasing but when I reflect on the level of appreciation I now have for myself and others, I can see that in the past there was very little true appreciation.
It is only because of Serge Benhayon and all that he presents and lives, along with his unending care towards people, that I have become aware of this. With the support of Universal Medicine practitioners, the amazing reflection of all the caring and vital men and women that make up the students of The Way of The Livingness, as well as my willingness to deepen, unfold and change old patterns, I have connected to and can appreciate the deeply loving person I am and can also see and feel others to be.
In this past year I have been fortunate enough to meet two amazing new male friends who have inspired me. If I had met these men in the past, I am sure I would have been oblivious to their amazingness and/or I probably would have found it confronting to be met with such care and in such an engaging way, let alone appreciate them for it. I have met many people over the last year but these men stood out for their very genuine qualities.
One man is a painter who I was recommended to use. He has a high level of integrity and an amazing work ethic and consideration for his clients. The other man is retired and volunteers a lot of his time; I see him when my husband and I walk our dog near the beach. He has a beautiful way about him that includes everybody around him. He always gives his full undivided attention to the people he speaks with, and he lifts people up by simply smiling and saying a joyful hello. Both men have integrity, are very respectful and value relationships with other people and have a beautiful way of connecting with people.
Whenever I am around each of them I feel met and cared for because each of them takes the time to stop, really listen and hold a very caring level of eye contact throughout the conversation.
I simply feel how amazing it is that these men – who just go about their day – work hard doing what they do (whether they are paid for it or not), are living life to the full and yet have held on to the beautiful tenderness and self-connection they would have had as young boys. Today they share that in the interactions they have with others. They are not shut down or dismissive, racy, forceful or imposing; instead they are patient, open, engaging, humble, gentle and genuinely caring. These are men to admire, who definitely have qualities worth appreciating.
I love that I can see these amazing qualities in others and myself. I now know what true connection feels like and I can have it with other people in my everyday activities.
Written in the full appreciation of the lived loving way of Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine.
By Johanna Smith, Bachelor of Education
The Gorgeousness Of It All: Falling In Love With Myself, Others and The World
Magic of Knowing… We are All One & the Same on the Inside
If we don’t appreciate ourselves, how can we truly appreciate another? To what depth can that level of appreciation really go?
I have felt my appreciation of men deepen hugely in recent times. It’s gorgeous to be reminded this is a reflection of the deepening of appreciation for myself too
Great to read your blog again Johanna. I am learning to appreciate myself and others more and more. It supports us in so many ways and it is a beautiful way to bring joy into our everyday when we fully appreciate ourselves, everything and everyone around us.
Gorgeous to read this, it is so important to appreciate ourselves and each other for the beauty that we all bring.
We can so often project our ideals and beliefs on another, and in this never see or meet who stands before us. If we are open to love, we allow the full sight of another’s glory to be seen.
The more appreciation that I have for myself the more I am able to appreciate all those around me. Appreciation is a huge building tool to enriching life.
Elizabeth you are the pinnacle of appreciation in my eyes. You live all that you just shared, and all are showered in this appreciation when they meet you. A true gift.
It certainly is Elizabeth, I am experiencing this too and my life has changed due to appreciating myself and others more and more. I agree appreciation is the key ingredient to nurturing ourselves, our relationships and life.
Appreciation is the registering of something of value which in turn acts as a confirmation and seems to somehow solidify it so that it can be used as a platform from which to then take another step forwards.
“They are not shut down or dismissive, racy, forceful or imposing; instead they are patient, open, engaging, humble, gentle and genuinely caring. These are men to admire, who definitely have qualities worth appreciating.” This is how every man can be if they but be open to the love that resides within. Beautiful to experience and appreciate men living who they truly are.
How ‘normal’ is this though? Men and women get confirmed that it is normal by what they see and experience around them in life. The men who don’t subscribe to that stand out because they are not being ruled by time and that is a divine reflection.
Both men and women love to be adored and appreciated. We flourish and expand when we receive confirmation of how gorgeous we are. The more we adore and appreciate ourselves this expression naturally flows out to everyone else. It is beautiful how this works.
The more we appreciate men for the tenderness that they are, the more they are willing to drop their walls and protection, and maybe even some of their lifestyle bubbles they love so much.
How we are with ourselves is definitely key to how we are with others, as if I slack off with my own self appreciation and care, it does ripple out to others and I can miss a moment of appreciation that is there to be expressed.
This is very beautiful, knowing the reignited appreciation you share here is builiding a loving way to live for all.
It is a great point that we often don’t appreciate the wonderful qualities of those around us because we don’t appreciate them in ourselves. Self appreciation is not about appreciating what we do or achieve, but about appreciating the being that we are, and all that goes with that.
It takes one to know one Johanna! We can appreciate the qualities in others that we ourselves have. To be appreciating this depth of connection means that you have it too. Very beautiful.
I appreciate men a lot and yet I don’t always express my appreciation. Thank you for this reminder to speak up and share how I feel.
Me too Elaine, it is beautiful to express our appreciation for people around us, it leaves us feeling warm and tingly, it is confirming and deeply supportive for everyone. Why hold back expressing our appreciation when it can be so magical to express it?
Taking responsibility for our own feelings around men/others shouldn’t be a big ask, but if we haven’t accounted for our own hurts regarding men or others, we can inflict those unresolved emotions onto our relationships with others, and then judge them as lesser or lacking in some way. Better to fess up about what a situation brings up for us before we dive in and blame another.
Why are we so quick to mistrust? One man or woman behaves in a way that hurts us and we write-off the whole gender as being insensitive and unloving. Why is there even a saying, ‘being sworn off men’? But it’s not just men and women, some of us are sworn off humanity too. The more we can deal with and take responsibility for our hurts, the less blame and separation happens.
Johanna, this is beautiful to read. I have noticed how much more I appreciate people now that I have started appreciating myself, I did not used to appreciate people and would instead be judgmental and be in self doubt when communicating with people and so there was no true connection. Having been inspired by Universal Medicine courses and events to connect to the true me I have found that I have developed much more confidence in myself and I can now see my qualities and beauty and now i can also see this beauty in others, it is very lovely to feel.
” I now know what true connection feels like and I can have it with other people in my everyday activities.” This is gorgeous Johanna. All true connection begins with having a true loving connection with ourselves first.
As a woman I have always been very guarded with men, this year I am working in an all male team. I have at times found it confronting when I am asked to deal with challenging situations and I am learning to not harden up or be guarded when there is little communication. I am recognising how much is communicated through the body and how much men pick up on this- I know that I need to be more open and learn to express my enjoyment of them more.
Thank you your appreciation of men, we need more appreciation of men in the world to often I hear stereotypical moans about men, this can never be honouring of the real tender guy inside.
Thanks Johanna, you’ve reminded me of some of the male friends I have that I appreciate dearly, and whom I would not know how to appreciate had I not begun to start appreciating myself. I too was always very very vary of men, and the truth is…it’s often still there, particularly with those I don’t yet know. In the meantime as I open myself, I’m able to practice with those that I trust and feel comfortable with, and it’s awesome to see them as who they are and not as just the opposite sex.
Beautiful Johanna, I feel the same about the level of appreciation I now have for men and women. There has been a deepening of love within me that has allowed me to see the love in others.
Prior to Universal Medicine I was actually very protected around men and women but with men I just felt really awkward. It was like I didn’t know who I was so relating with the opposite sex was a bit of a mystery underneath all the gender roles people generally play out. Now I don’t meet so many men as my work is mostly women but I do meet fathers of the families I work with. One I met prior to his release from prison and what’s lovely is being able to connect with the very sensitive man beneath a lot of the outer impressions one could have bought into. The conversation was amazing. I know I wouldn’t have had this conversation had I still been relating to men in the stereotypes that I had kept them pigeon holed to before.
When a man reconnects to whom he truly is, he shines like a gem… And is an inspiration for all around him
It’s amazing how we can see or receive the world and how this is governed by how we see ourselves. If there is little appreciation for yourself then your eyes will very rarely also see this quality in others whereas if you bring this to yourself even if its through appreciating others first then the whole world will look different. We can have many views of the world and this depends on how you are with yourself, how you are in your internal world. What if our eyes don’t see but they receive and what if they have a filter on them that is controlled by how you see yourself, some may say be careful what you wish for. Appreciation is huge in this mix and if you spend time with it, no matter how small, it will feed you back in some way. If we all took the time to appreciate, truly appreciate the small or big things around us then the world would change. Would the look change? Well yes but the quality would change, how we are in the world would change. We only think we have no control over things and life just passes us by, when in fact we are the drivers of our choices. We only need to take more care in what we choose.
It’s interesting how we can be fooled by a false confidence in another especially (as in my case) by a man. I no longer fall for this and see it for what it is. This in turn allows me to see and feel the true qualities in another first and supports me to observe and not absorb.
When I start appreciating myself it is like opening the floodgates and I appreciate what I see everywhere. Appreciation of others just pours out and at the same time confirms what the other already knows about themselves. I feel a joyous giggle like bubbles inside when I see a man express his gentleness and warmth and express who they are.
It is joyous to be with people and see them for who they are, to see them in all their beauty and tenderness and deep care.
As a man its beautiful to read this, as its not about the things we do. The real gold comes from giving our full and undivided attention to another person… its about connection first. You don’t have to try at that, its not exhausting, and yet another feels the power and influence of our presence way more than what we can do for them.
On a certain level I first see all people as people and not so much as male, female, gay, black, child, old, fat or whatever. Certainly we all have different qualities, bodies, forms of expression etc. It seems when we first look at the outer difference without feeling the one loving essence we all share we create a form of separation which already stops us from truly connecting with each other.
As men letting go of the images we place on oursleves about the roles we play allows us to connect to the essence of who we are, the level of tenderness and caring nature. The more we appreciate and comfirm this in our bodies first the more others can truly appreciate it in us.
I too have been able to allow myself to see past the act many men put on in an attempt to dull or hide their sensitivity and awesomeness. Whilst it can be hurtful to feel, it’s understandable given the pressure society places on them to be a certain way. Just learning to appreciate them and all they bring really makes a difference in the interactions I have with Men, and that’s definitely something worth continuing.
Yes Elodie choosing to focus on a man’s qualities, i.e. naturally caring and gentle, and appreciate these qualities – and much more – instead of focusing on what he is not, is well worth learning. In fact, it is very beautiful when we allow ourselves to feel the true qualities within men, knowing who they are, regardless of how they may be choosing to live.
Quite simply if we are in appreciation of the amazing person we are our life is going to be flowing, joyful and loving. As soon we we stop appreciating ourselves we can not truly appreciative another and we will be constantly be relying on the outside world to confirm us rather then knowing who we are.
‘I love that I can see these amazing qualities in others and myself. I now know what true connection feels like and I can have it with other people in my everyday activities.’ Once we appreciate ourselves, our qualities it feels very natural to have appreciation for others, to connect to the love and tenderness in each other.
Knowing the essence and qualities I bring, accepting that’s my expression, appreciating I need be no more or no less, I am just me which makes it easy to meet others just as they are, no imposing energies makes for a simple joy full interchange, be it men, women and children.
Appreciation is gold. Learning to appreciate others – and myself – for who we are and not for anything we may do has made me realise how much there is to appreciate.
It is beautiful to feel your appreciation for these 2 men as they live their lives being true to themselves and meeting others in their loveliness. Like you I would, prior to attending Universal Medicine presentations, have failed to appreciate the depth of their tenderness as I had so little appreciation for myself and was so shut down to others that I lived in a fog of protection that kept others at a distance despite my longing for deeper connections.
Beautiful Johanna. Indeed men are to be appreciated. That is indeed not that easy to see their qualities because of all the layers they have taken or roles they think they should play. Perhaps the biggest one is that men very often live in a bubble living amongst people but not really being and connecting with people.
As others have shared, that appreciation of others comes when we appreciate ourselves first. I would not be in the situations I find myself in, in the company of some very gorgeously tender men, if I myself had not chosen to care for myself in such a way that says ‘yes I deserve this company’. Because how we treat ourselves is often reflected in our environment and the company we have around us, it’s like the quality of relationships wants to group together and it shows.
For me what I am really beginning to truly feel in my body is the absolute true love and care Serge Benhayon has and holds for everybody. He never meets a person for their hurts or holds any grudges or his own hurts against them. This is making me realise how often I take things personally, hold hurts or past hurts against people, therefor never truly letting them in, or getting to feel how lovely they really are.
There are indeed so many truly gentle and tender men out there in life some still bound by the roles and expectations of life and many others who shine out in our daily lives unheralded and unseen.