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Listener: In the previous activity we have learned what Love is not, then what Love is?
Acharya Prashant: That same activity sheet also contained a paragraph on that. Didn’t it?
L: Sir, but they were just the reciprocate; the opposite of what love is not. It didn’t actually explained what love is.
AP: (nodding his head in dismissal) It did. It very clearly did that. Is anybody carrying that sheet?
Even looking at that sheet will be a good experience. Read the last paragraph – what is love? Now, give it to me. Let me read it aloud.
Pay attention. Last paragraph, last heading and that’s why it has been highlighted in another color. Do you see that?
It starts by saying, “Love is the action of an immersed mind.” What is love? Love is the action of an immersed mind. Love is the relationship with the other, simple?
What is love? A relationship with the other. What kind of relationship one has with the other depends on the relationship one has with oneself. In the sense that, it’s me who relates to you, right? It’s me. Now the ability to relate vests in me. So, it depends on the configuration of my mind. The kind of relationship that I’ll have with you or with anybody else, with the entire world depends on the kind of mind I have, right?
Suppose, I have a mind that is full of doubts and suspicions then, what kind of relationship will I have? A suspicious relationship.
Suppose I have a mind that is always feeling inadequate and unworthy, then what kind of relationship will I have? A relationship of need and dependency.
So, it says that love is the relationship with the other. The relationship that one has with the other depends on the relationship firstly, one has with himself. So, love firstly is one’s own relationship with oneself which in turn translates into one’s relationship with others. Clear?
Now, then what does it mean to have a loving relationship with oneself? What we are saying is, “In order to have a loving relationship with the other. One first needs to have a loving relationship with oneself.”
So, what is it to have a loving relationship with oneself?
When mind is calm and peaceful, relaxed in immersion in its own source then the mind is not aggressive, violent or ambitious towards itself. When the mind is immersed in its own source that is called “Mind’s own health”. This mind is a very joyful mind. It is not aggressive. What is aggression? I am feeling hurt, so I want to hurt the other, that is aggression. I am feeling hurt and I want to hurt the other, that is aggression.
What is ambition? I lack something, so I want to achieve it. When the mind is immersed, then it feels complete. It does not say that, “I lack something.” Alright? Then it cannot have a relationship of ambition with the other.
In its tranquil dissolution, the mind does not focus on differences, instead appreciates the oneness behind everything. Hence, there is no division or violence or expectation from oneself. This is what a loving relationship of the individual with oneself is.
I am not expecting anything from myself. I am not divided that I want this or I want that. This is called having a good relationship with oneself. Most of us do not have a good relationship with oneself. We say, “We want good relations with others.” But firstly we do not have good relations with ourselves. Now, if I don’t not have good relationship with myself, how can I have good relations with others?
Have you seen how much we expect from ourselves?
Have you seen how you curse and blame yourself? It’s all my mistake. Had I studied a little more, I could have gotten 2.4 marks more. For 2.4 marks, he will curse himself for 2.4 months. Have you seen that? Now, this fellow is violent towards himself. When you are violent towards yourself how will you not be violent towards others?
Such an individual, who is immersed in himself will obviously relate to the world in a loving way. Of course, he will be loving towards his family and friends but his love towards a few people is not at the cost of others. He is loving towards animals, birds, mountains, rivers whatever he comes across. His very presence means wellness for all.
He lives in joy and radiates joy. Love is his being because love is primarily the state of his own mind. Because his mind is in union with its beloved source; the individual is in union with the entire existence. Are you getting it?
This is what love is – a composed, relaxed mind. To put it simply, to love the other is to have a healthy relationship with the other and for the mind to have a healthy relationship with the other, first of all the mind must be healthy in itself. Are you getting it?
How can I have a healthy relationship with you, if I am not healthy?
How can the relationship be healthy, when the mind in the relationship is not healthy?
Is it possible?
Is it possible that the mind is diseased but, the relationship is healthy? Is it possible?
Do you get now, what love is? A healthy mind; the relationships of a healthy mind are called love.
The relationship of a healthy mind are called loving relationships.
Isn’t it so simple? It’s not complicated. It’s not something that you can never understand. It’s so simple that you want it a little more complicated. It’s so simple that you find difficult to enter it.
-Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity
Watch the session: Acharya Prashant: What is a relationship of love?
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