One of the basic principles in Integral philosophy is that all events and situations – in fact, all of reality – have an interior subjective aspect: the inner experience of an individual or a collective; and it also has an exterior aspect: that what can be seen, touched, measured factually, by an individual or a collective.

It is based on this premise that we say that Love is the inner face of reality. Or, in the words of king Solomon who reigned in ancient Jerusalem: “Its insides are lined with Love”.

This is the revelation that all mystics across the traditions have come to realize. The world is a web of interconnected relationships and what holds the Universe together is a Force which we experience interiorly as Love. The source of all suffering and all pain, personal or planetary, is therefore to ignore or to forget that we are part of that Love and more than that, that we are literally bathing in that Love all the time!

By Love, we do not mean the conditional emotional love we humans experience – although this love is really a beautiful yet more limited version of that purer, more fundamental Love. This Love is what we call ‘Outrageous Love’, a core term in the Unique Self theory and in Cosmo Erotic Humanism as developed by Dr Marc Gafni.

Dante spoke of it as the Love that moves the stars and the other planets. It is the cement that bonds the myriad manifestations of Life as One.

How do we access this Love and why is it important?

It is only when we have clarified our perception and realized that we are sourced by this primordial goodness that we can understand that we are a unique expression of it. With that realization comes a sense of obligation. The obligation to manifest our Unique Self. We understand that our Unique Self is a unique expression of that Love Intelligence in the world.

This is what Marc means when he says: “God needs your deed.” The world needs more people who awaken to that truth, and manifest as unique expressions of the Love Intelligence that moves the stars and the planets and all of creation.

This Love, as we said above, is not an emotion, it is a perception; through practices, and other contemplative exercises, we can learn to expand our capacity to perceive Love. But it is not enough to understand this intellectually. We also need to open our whole being to Outrageous Love. In a human body, this implies that we start the journey from our heads to our hearts. While they are only a short physical distance from each other, these two centers of perception are worlds apart in the ways we experience life.

This is why the Summer Festival of Love is so valuable.

A Symphony of Unique Selves

Every Summer, we gather together around these teachings with Dr Marc Gafni, a true master teacher of the heart. Marc’s teachings have the power to impact us at different levels of our beings and to open us in such way that we may start experiencing ourselves as unique expressions of Outrageous Love. When we gather as a community and engage all together in practices and exercises that challenge us emotionally, spiritually, intellectually and energetically, we start to wake up, show up, grow up and join together. That’s the Unique Self Symphony in which each individual plays their unique and gorgeous part.

Outrageous Love is the healer

When we open our hearts, however, it is not always just sweet and beautiful. With our hearts open, we feel more love, but inevitably, we also open to feeling more pain. The more we allow our heart to feel, the more we will be able to reclaim all the parts of ourselves we had left behind, because they were too painful or shameful. As we learn to open our hearts to these parts of ourselves, we become more whole. As we gradually become more open to feeling our pain, our hearts get bigger, we can take more, and we also open to the pain of the world. Feeling thus, is the healing. This is what Marc means when he says, “The only response to Outrageous Pain, is Outrageous Love”. Outrageous Love is the healer. It is the Force that can move mountains and create solutions for the existential crisis we are facing.

We live in challenging times. The global crisis we’re experiencing today is challenging us to articulate a new story of what it means to be a Human Being. This new story is a story of Outrageous Love, and we hope you will come and write a whole new chapter with us this Summer at the 7th Summer Festival of Love, from 29 July until 4 August 2019 at Kasteel de Berckt in Baarlo, the Netherlands.

We can't wait to see you this Summer!