“You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not to to be found anywhere.
You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe
deserve your love and affection.”

A dear friend of mine died a few weeks ago in London. He was my first love after I came to Osho in my early twenties. He was a wild and crazy man, a brilliant professional actor. He was on the stage with the Royal Shakespeare company and the National Theatre and was in several movies and TV series. One of them had him cast as a wild man trapped down on the London Underground, and after so long not being around normal people, all he knew how to say was “Mind The Gap” (between the train and the platform). I can never be on a tube in London without hearing those words and thinking of him. He lived in that gap.

He suffered from depression in the last years
he talked about killing himself, but in the end he died of natural causes. I didn’t see much of him lately but I miss him and his spirit is very much with me. Even though he carried the existential pain and suffering that so many of us work so hard to keep at bay, he touched everyone that knew him and he was loved by so many.  He had a wicked sense of humor and could have us on the floor with belly laughter, mimicking himself and others. He was always uncompromisingly and impossibly himself. I will always remember the many crazy times we shared.

Why I am writing this now is because it is Valentine’s day. And even though we were lovers long ago, everyone I have loved has a special place in my heart. And more so because he taught me that being loved has nothing to do with what we do, how we show up in the world or even how we feel. In the last years of his life, Tosh really didn’t do much of anything, in fact sometimes he could not even get out of bed. But still he was loved just for who he was and how he touched and inspired people.

As I prepare for his funeral on Monday, I am reminded that it is never the accomplishments that we most remember about someone we love, but who they were and how and what they love that most moves us.

So I invite you on this Valentine’s day, to take a moment and think of those you love, and the essence of who they are. Think of the various qualities that make you love them, the way they smile, or make you laugh, or touch your heart with their particular kind of quirkiness. Don’t wait for death to come to remember how much you love those that you do.

And now let yourself sense all the people that you have touched and that love you just for who you are. You don’t need to be anything other than just the way you are, to be loved, totally, absolutely, in all your unique humanity and all your divinity. And know one thing, The Divine loves you always, absolutely, unconditionally, just as you are, without you needing to prove a single thing.

“A true friend is someone who lets you have total freedom to be yourself — That’s what real love amounts to — letting a person be what he really is.”
~Jim Morrison