Remember the great Beatles' tune, All You Need Is Love - Not knowing Paul or John personally, I don't know for sure, but wouldn't be surprised if they really meant it.
The notion that all we truly need is love is popping up all over. Joe Vitale writes about the importance of love in his book, Zero Secrets , based on a Hawaiian system for health and peace.
Dr. Larry Dossey wrote in his book Prayer is Good Medicine , " In the scores of scientific experiments dealing with prayer and a prayer-like state of consciousness, one of the most crucial qualities appears to be love—compassion, empathy, deep caring. Love implies letting go….” (pg 142).
Psychology Today says, “ Love is the best anti-depressant .” Perhaps this why volunteer work is such a wonderful means to pull oneself out of sadness. PT goes on to describe love, “ Love is as critical for your mind and body as oxygen. It's not negotiable. The more connected you are, the healthier you will be both physically and emotionally. The less connected you are, the more you are at risk. ”
I believe love to be a state of consciousness, not to be confused with affection or lust. When we are in a state of love, we are naturally giving, compassionate, peaceful, and well.... loving.
In Hatha Yoga backbends are a wondrous physical motion that opens the fourth chakra and thus our hearts--literally and figuratively. In many ways a backbend puts you in a vulnerable position, the heart is an organ you simply cannot live without. Not only does this put your physical body out in the open, but your emotional self as well. There is a reason we use the term "heart ache." To let go and experience love, we must be willing to go through a state of vulnerability. When you reach your chest high and open the fronts of the shoulders, it's difficult to not release some pent up grudges. Add to that the mental intention of forgiveness and connection with others and you just might feel your heart grow a bit bigger.