Don’t let love turn into a relationship || Acharya Prashant (2013)

To personally meet or connect with Acharya Prashant: click here.

Listener: Sir, love turning into a relationship has its repercussions in my life.

Acharya Prashant: Ayushi is saying that love has turned into a relationship and that is having repercussions in her life.

First of all, it is wonderful that you have already understood a very fundamental truth, which is that, whenever anything turns into a relationship, it goes bad. Whenever anything turns into a relationship, it goes bad.

I understand what I am saying is a little puzzling but stay with me and remain attentive. Love is a particular quality of relating. It is right now.  It is not a concept of the mind, it is something absolutely new. It does not happen because you had thought about it. There is no background to Love. That is why when it happens it throws you off your feet. Those of us, who have had a taste of love, would understand what I am saying. Because it is something which is not planned, because it is something which is not premeditated, because real Love is not a thought or conceptual, that is why when it comes, it comes like a fresh breath of air. In fact, I am understating. It comes like a tornado that blows you away. You are off your feet. Now, that is love; that is something new, something fresh. It just happens, it’s almost a surprise. You have not planned that I must fall in love with that fellow. That’s why it rejuvenates. You discover that you are young. It’s so beautiful.

What happens to this then?  Now, this love which had a fresh quality of relating, we give a particular name to it and we turn it into a relationship and relationship is always dependent upon the past.

Understand the difference between love and relationship.

Love is fresh; the relationship depends on upon the past and is very limited.

The moment you declare that I have a particular relationship with somebody, you already have a concept in mind.

Love is not a concept, but husband and wife are a concept. The moment you say that somebody is my wife or somebody is my husband, you already know what that relationship means. Now it is dead, absolutely dead. Somebody has said that “Lovers die and on their corpses husband and wife are born.” It’s only when lovers are dead then the husband and wife arises.

Because love cannot have a name, love is not a fixed relationship. But our mind, our poor little mind, it cannot tolerate the freshness of love. It has no power to live with the absolute uncertainty and wildness of love. So, what does it do? It says that let us give a name to our relationship. Let’s formalise our agreement, let’s take the sanction of the society. So, the first name they will give to each other is, “We are lovers.” Then they will say that “Let’s formalise it even more”, and then they will say that “Now we are husband and wife.” And the more you are formalising it, the more names you are giving it, the more trouble you are creating for yourself. You are thinking that all this is happening out of love. I am saying that all this is taking you out of love. You think that the relationship is born out of love, from love and I am saying that because of relationship now you are moving out of love, away from love.

Have you heard that song?

“Ham ne dekhi hai in aankhon ki mehekti khushbu” 

(I have seen the fragrance emanating from those eyes)

“Haath se choo ke ise rishton ka ilzaam naa do” 

(Do not stain it by labelling it as a relationship)

“Sirf ehsaas hai ye rooh se mehsoos karo”

(It is only realisation; experience it with your soul)

“Pyaar ko pyaar hi rehne do koi naam naa do”

(Let love be love, do not ascribe it a label)


Do you understand what the poet is trying to say? But we are so keen to turn the love into a relationship and the moment it becomes a relationship, love is gone. Now, there will be expectations, now there will be a definite code of conduct.

“You are my boyfriend. How can you look at somebody else?”

“You are my wife. You must take care of me.”

Now love is gone and duty has come in.

Love is not a duty; Love is absolute Freedom.

In your Freedom, you Love.

You are not compelled to Love.

A lover is not constrained to produce kids but a wife must produce kids. If you are somebody’s girlfriend, you can walk away anytime but a wife has certain respectability, she cannot walk away anytime. What can you do? Now, the individuals are lost and images are living. The individual is gone and it’s the wife who is talking.

Have you ever wondered that in all these movies that you see, why do all love stories end at marriage? There will be an entire love story and what happens in the end? Marriage,and after that, ‘The End’. You should ask, “What is happening after this? That is the real thing, show that.” But then, the movie has ended. They will not show you that now she is cleaning the clothes. That’s the real thing that you should have asked. But they are very clever. If they will start showing you that then the society’s objectives will be defeated.

The society does not want you to love. The society does not want lovers. It wants husbands and wives. The society hates lovers but it loves husbands and wives. It will say go, quickly get married. You don’t love each other, doesn’t matter. Go and get married. Marriage is good, love is bad. And marriage is a name, so is any other relationship. I am not advocating a live-in kind of a thing even that is a name, even in that there are expectations. And I am not talking about just the love between a man and a woman.

In every relationship, there are no individuals. Take example of Father and son. Do the father and son really talk to each other? No, it’s the father talking to the son, not an individual talking to an individual. That’s why sons are restless with their fathers and fathers are never happy with their sons. Because a father can never be happy with a son. An individual can be happy with another individual, not a father with a son. But, we are so eager, he is my son, he will not say that he is an individual. Have we ever seen our father as an individual?  Very difficult and that is why there is so much suffering in our relationships. That is why our relationships are so dead. We constantly feel like moving away, there is certain suffocation there. So, it is good that you are realising that relationship causes trouble. Great! That you have realised this. Now, you are free from life.

All your life, if you are learning a lesson then you will avoid relationship. Yes, you will relate, but like a free bird.

Relating is another thing, relationship is totally different.

It is a wonderful thing that it is happening to you at such an early age. There are people who grow forty years old, fifty years old, they still don’t realise. And they die wondering, what did I do wrong? They think probably life is suffering, they say life is hell, what can I do? They say, “You know what, man is born because he is a sinner”, then they come up with all those fancy stories.

Life is not hell; you have made it into hell. Life is worth living only in love and you killed love. You killed love because you are so insecure; you quickly wanted to get into a relationship.

Haven’t you seen, three months of dating and the girl will start asking, “When will we get married?” And she thinks it’s cute. It’s monstrous. You understand monstrous. Look at her face and see the devil and run away. Run away for your own dear life. The day she says when we will get married, run away. She knows no love. Had she known love, she would not have been insecure. You know what she is thinking. That before you go away, let’s get married, that way there will be a bond.

A really loving person would say, “Marriage or no marriage, how does it matter? I am not even thinking of marriage. This is sufficient. This fullness of love is sufficient. Who is thinking about marriage? Marriage is such a trivial thing, who wants to talk about it?” But you want to talk about it as the first thing. I have seen people who even before loving, for them loving is an action, before loving, they will check, which religion, which caste, which gotra. “Now, it is alright. Now I can love. And, what is her age? She should be at least six months younger because my parents do not like the girl to be older than the boy.” So, everything is verified, all checks were done, and now I will love. This fellow, can he ever love? Are you loving or getting a credit card? With so many checks. “My name is Alok Sharma, she looked quite pretty. I go close to her and find out her name is Razia Sultana” and Alok Sharma runs heels over heads. My goodness. And just two minutes back he was singing all the romantic songs and he was feeling completely in love. “I have discovered the nectar of life, she is the princess of my dreams. I was always dreaming about her.” The moment he comes to know her name. “My goodness, there are so many traps in the world. The world is so deceptive.” There should be a nameplate somewhere so that the moment we look there, we first see the name plate and we are warned. Does love look at names? Does love want names?

We are occupied with names, labels, brands. Once, I was in Bangalore, looking at all these matrimonial ads, how did they read? B.Tech. Comp. Science knows C++, also good in java. These are the matrimonial ads. Now, will you talk C++ with her? He is telling her all the operating platforms. But that establishes your brand. “Java. Good! IIT-IIM, this is a love worthy fellow.”

Let it be like a wild flower, when it grows, it just grows.

It can grow even on a rooftop or by the side of a small stream.

Let it just grow.

Don’t call it anything; don’t try to freeze it; don’t try to limit it – it will be dead.

If you try to capture a flower, what happens to that flower?

If you try to capture a butterfly, what happens to that butterfly?

It’s gone, it’s dead.

All you will be left with is a skeleton.

Do you want to live with a skeleton? Then why do you want to capture love?

Why can’t you just love and let it be? Don’t raise expectations, let it flow.

Excerpted from a ‘Shabd-Yog’ session. Edited for clarity.

Watch the session video: Don’t let love turn into a relationship || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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