This article has been a long time coming. Most of my writing focuses on how we can cultivate ourselves to achieve every kind of freedom imaginable. I’ve written extensively on how developing our creativity, curiosity, knowledge, discipline and consistency enables us to expand our power to create a life of freedom and prosperity. This article will supersede all of those.
What is the key to freedom? Here I will answer that question. I will reveal what the ultimate key is. The one which unlocks all the locks and opens all the doors. I will be basing myself on my personal experience. I will explain how this key has allowed me to do things I never would have imagined with minimal resistance and money.
Accruing material wealth has been a challenge for me during my entire adult life. Since I graduated from college with a degree in chemistry, I have earned below the poverty level. I even hold an advanced degree in chemistry from one of the best universities in the world, and still, I have never held a job which relies on my formal training. At this point in time I haven’t had a stable income for four years. Yet this hasn’t stopped me from living an uncommon life filled with friendship, health, adventure, creativity and learning.
How have I been able to do this?
With the key.
It’s called love.
What Is Love? (Baby Don’t Hurt Me)
Love is the recognition of unity in another. While love is undefinable, that’s the best definition I have ever come across. I read it in “The Power Of Now” by Eckhart Tolle.
The definitions has nothing to do with romance or lust or passion. It has everything to do with recognizing that we are all part of a single universal creation. Love is a state of Being, in which acceptance, non-judgment and healing are natural consequences.
Science has demonstrated irrefutably that the universe, and everything in it, including ourselves, is one thing. We are one consciousness, experiencing itself. The separation we perceive between ourselves and the rest of the universe is an illusion, a veil we are here to lift.
Love is being in a state where that illusion of separation falls away. When we love, we are at one with what we love. Loving makes us incapable of hurting others, because we understand, innerstand and overstand that to do harm unto others is to do harm to ourselves.
The opposite of love is not hate. It’s fear. It is our fear of being separate from the universe which causes us to hurt others. When we believe that we are only this limited body, we fear death. When we fear death, we do everything in our power to prevent it. Even if this means hurting another or taking their life.
Please take some time to meditate on what you have just read. Reflect on the times you’ve hurt others. Where did your action come from? Did it flow from love? Or from fear?
Our Civilization’s Misconception Of Love
Love has been grotesquely misrepresented by our civilization. We have been taught that love is possession, holding, need, lust, jealousy and passion. Love is none of these things. These are the constructions of an immature civilization which seeks to create dependent human beings.
The universe is change; everything that has a beginning has an end. Everything is impermanent. When we seek to possess or own something, we are grasping at smoke, chasing illusions. By believing love is possession we close ourselves off to it. We cease to love and begin to fear.
What our civilization teaches us is love is actually it’s opposite, fear.
Love Starts With Each Of Us
All love starts with self-love. If a human being is incapable of loving himself/herself as he/she is, then that person’s capacity to love will be blocked.
Yet, look around. What does our civilization teach us about love? Does it teach us to love ourselves as we are? With all of our flaws and perfections? Or are we taught to love ourselves only when we have achieved a certain status? A certain level of education, perhaps?
Are we taught to be at peace with who we are? Or are we taught to strive, to work our butts off until we become worthy of love?
It’s by conditioning self-love that human beings become dependent. When we can’t love ourselves as we are, we begin to depend on things outside of ourselves to satisfy our need for self-love. But satisfying our self-love with things outside of us is a recipe for suffering. Nothing can replace our self-love.
It’s the conditioning of self-love which is the greatest tool our civilization has to control us, to convince us to give up our freedom, health, peace of mind and openness of heart.
Love Is Unconditional
In my Vipassana meditation courses I learned that love is like the light of the sun. It emanates from us in all directions, bathing everything it encounters in a warm glow. Sunlight isn’t picky about who or what it falls on. It just shines, regardless. This is true love.
By the way, science is demonstrating that humans are totally capable of loving others unconditionally, like the sun does. Unconditional love for others is within our biological capabilities.
True love goes against the foundational principles of our civilization. In our money-driven civilization, everything has a price. Economists do their best to explain all human action as transactions conforming to a utility function. Every interaction is a transaction.
We’re taught we can’t have something for nothing. This includes love.
Observe yourself. Can you see how this belief underpins your relationship with yourself?
The universe is abundant. The earth provides everything a human being needs to thrive in bountiful supply. The air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat and the people we need, they are all abundant.
It’s only when we believe that love is conditional, that we accept that the earth is a scarce place, in which competing against others is the only way to survive. Our relationship with ourselves determines our relationship with the universe.
If we condition self-love we condition life. Therefore, our task in this life is to let go of fear and allow love to flow.
Love Unlocks A Higher Realm Of Life
Here I will tell how love has opened the doors to a higher life in a way nothing else can.
This website is called “Explode Your Wealth”. I chose the word “Wealth” because it refers to a quality present in a magnificent life. The word “wealth” does not necessarily point to monetary wealth. People can be financially well-off, yet be poor; confined to living in scarcity and fear. Conversely, people can be financially broke, yet be profoundly wealthy, living life abundantly and lovingly.
I fall into the second group.
I have not worked a traditional job for almost four years. Four years ago I had some savings which I used to travel to Europe from Mexico City. Since then, those savings have dwindled. I have worked a couple of contracts and done some freelance language teaching and manuscript editing, but those activities don’t provide for more than a couple of months of living, at most.
And yet, I have lived the most adventurous, wonderful, healthy and plentiful life I have ever lived. Since I left my traditional job four years ago I have:
- Built a life with an amazing romantic partner.
- Taught languages in the Czech Republic.
- Walked the Fisherman’s Trail in southwestern coast of Portugal.
- Eaten pierogi in Warsaw.
- Swam in the crystal blue waters of Corfu, a Greek island.
- Camped in the sublime Jasper National Park in Alberta, Canada.
- Visited Vancouver with a fantastic group of friends.
- Gone to Barcelona for a week on a work contract.
And so much more…
How have I done this?
By loving; freely, openly and fearlessly. By laying it all on the line for love, trusting the universe has my back and leaving it all on the playing field.
I’ll tell you exactly how.
How I Stepped Into The Flow Of Love
Our heart is the master of love. The more in tune we are with our heart, the more loving choices we make. Sadly, our civilization teaches us to think all the time to make our choices, but the real wisdom is found in our hearts. There is emerging science which supports this, by the way.
Ignoring my heart caused me tremendous grief without my realizing it. This continued until heartbreak cracked my heart open and invited me to investigate what my hear truly desired.
So after my heartbreak, while my heart was healing, life sent me another invitation to love. I fell in love again. Once again, life invited me to lay it all on the line for love. My heart pleaded me to follow its desires.
This time I listened.
I quit my job, moved to the Czech Republic so Petra (girlfriend) and I could be together. I had no job lined up, I didn’t know the culture nor the language, I had no friends and I had very little money saved up. I didn’t even know if Petra and I would make it once we lived together! Would we work?
There was only one way to find out.
I was afraid. But I did it anyways. I had learned about the consequences of not listening to my heart, through the painful lesson of heartbreak. I didn’t need to learn it again.
The moment I listened to my heart’s calling was the moment I stepped into the flow of love. And I didn’t even know it. It has taken me years of living this way to realize what that means.
The Flow Of Love, What Does It Mean?
The flow of love transcends the flow of money. Money is the currency of matter. Love is the currency of spirit. When we step into the flow of love, we begin to loosen the conditioned hold money has on our choices. The deeper we immerse ourselves in the flow the less important money becomes.
This is not to say money isn’t important! But money is a tool. Too many of us are controlled by money, the tool, as opposed to controlling it. There are more important things than money, things it can’t buy, like health, friendship, romantic love, sleep and creativity. Money can be the fertilizer which allows these things to grow. But the essential elements; the soil, water and sunshine, those are provided by love. Self-love.
I love myself as I am, with a profundity as vast as the undiscovered ocean depths in our beautiful blue planet. It is because I love myself so deeply that I only make choices which fortify my health, peace of mind and joy.
What Self-Love Creates
I only do meaningful work, even if it pays less than other types of work. If a relationship costs me my peace of mind, I let go of it. Nothing is worth more than my peace of mind and self-respect, not a job title, nor anything else. If a relationship with a person or place brings me joy I do everything in my power to nourish that relationship. In this way, both I and the other party in the relationship benefit and grow from the joy we share.
I do all of this because I love myself.
See how our relationship with ourselves determines our relationship with the world?
Most of us human beings have been conditioned since childhood to not love ourselves as we are. We’re taught that we’re not good enough unless we become someone else. We are conditioned to reject ourselves; our joys, interests and talents. It’s this lack of self-acceptance (self-love) which keeps us dependent on things which hurt us; relationships which steal our peace of mind, corrupt our health and close off our hearts.
I know this because I was there. I know what it’s like to reject myself. The price we pay for doing so is immeasurable.
Being in the flow of love has gently opened me up to loving myself more deeply. Every day my self-love grows. And every day my life becomes more abundant, peaceful and joyful. My friendships flourish, my health is top-notch, creativity bubbles out of me and my life is filled with adventure.
Living in the flow of love is our birthright as humans. It’s something we’re all capable of doing.
What Being In The Flow Of Love Means For Me
Being in the flow of love takes different forms for different people. But one thing is constant throughout; when we’re in the flow of love people who want to help us appear.
For me, the most helpful person has been my girlfriend Petra. Many people have helped me, including my parents, my brother, my dear friends in Mexico, the United States and Europe and my extended family. I am profoundly grateful to all of them.
And Petra has been the incarnation of support. She has provided the money which has made our life of health, adventure and love possible. It’s her work that has given me the space which I’ve needed to discover myself and create what my heart desires. Her love has taught me in more ways than I could ever have imagined at the outset of our relationship.
And it all started because I followed my heart and moved for us to be together. And it continued because I chose to follow my heart again and move to Canada together, where Petra got a position at a top-level medical institution.
Yes, Petra is a badass doctor. She is gorgeous, smart, funny, fit and cares deeply for the people in her life. Also, her laughter makes my heart sing.
She has been the financial engine of our relationship.
So What Do I Do In The Relationship?
What is your idea of me now that you know this about me?
Some people in my life have called me a deadbeat, a parasite and a person who doesn’t contribute. I’ve been told that it’s my responsibility to contribute financially to our relationship, that letting Petra earn all the money is irresponsible and unfair.
That’s money talking, not love. That’s the belief that all humans have to offer, especially men, is financial in nature. We all have something to contribute, unique to us, which supersedes money. After all, parents don’t get paid for parenting, yet it’s the most important role a person could ever play!
Both Petra and I understand deeply that what our relationship gives us goes above and beyond whatever money can ever give us. Our relationship is companionship. It’s support through the uncertainty of life. It’s a hug at the end of a long day of work, laughter at an inside joke and sharing in the beauty of life.
Our relationship isn’t perfect by a long shot. We have days when we argue. But throughout it all we both make the choices which prove to us that our relationship comes first. Money comes second. That’s us putting money in it’s place, rather than letting it control us, which is sadly what most people allow it to do, again, men especially.
The love we give others is a reflection of the love we give ourselves. Since I love myself so deeply, what do you believe people get from me?
I’ll let you consider that for a moment.
Anyone Can Enter The Flow Of Love
Someone might read this and say “Well, Erick got lucky because he met a wonderful person who can make enough money to support both of them while he finds his feet financially.”
To which I would answer: “Was it luck?”
Remember, we attract what we are. A loving, educated, beautiful and successful woman like Petra is only romantically attracted to a man who is her equal, at the very least. That’s some Jordan Peterson for you.
Would I have attracted her if had I been a rude, uneducated and slovenly man? Would our romantic relationship have blossomed if I were a deadbeat who spent his days laying on the couch drinking beer and dulling my mind with television?
In order to attract her I had to be educated, fit, cultured, charming, handsome and, most importantly, loving.
And you know what? These are all things we can control. We can’t control who our parents were and what they taught us. But we can control whether we stay where we are or we rise to the best within us.
And yes, we can control even our handsomeness and/or beauty. A good haircut, nice clothes, exercise, nutritious food, and good posture do wonders for a person’s appearance.
So we have no excuses. Actually, we can have excuses, but having them will do nothing to change our situation.
Invest in yourself. It’s the best investment you will ever make.
Will You Enter The Flow Of Love And Create Freedom?
This article is one of the most important one’s I’ve ever written. It’s a call to love and self-improvement. We all have more than we know, all it takes for us to discover it is to look, patiently and persistently.
The flow of love is real. It’s the realest thing there is. It has always been there. It’s just that most of us are conditioned to attend to other things, to chase illusions, rather than focus on love, which is the highest gift we have to offer the universe.
I hope this article has inspired you to take action; follow your heart, improve yourself as you go, you’ll be amazed at what results.
To our wealth and success.