The real love is where you love without expectations, and purely unconditional – and that’s how it should be.
When we are in love, the world and our lives become beautified. Everything takes on a vividness and richness unseen before. One’s world undergoes a transformative beauty in the presence of the beloved. As an Urdu poet of the past century, Sant Darshan Singh, says:
The autumn-stricken paths suddenly bloomed and blossomed,
In whatever direction the Beloved turns, there is only spring.
What is it like for the soul to be lost in love with its beloved Lord? It is more beautiful than being with your beloved in gardens landscaped with dancing fountains surrounded by a myriad of fragrant flowers. It is lovelier than sitting together on a hillside and watching the brilliant colours of a setting sun. It is more peaceful than sitting by a gently flowing stream in a cool forest. It is more uplifting than the haunting violin and the angelic harps. It is like being permeated from head to toe with divine love.
Along with the intoxication and madness of this love comes another aspect: This love is unconditional. It knows no discrimination, no prejudice, and no separatism. Our soul is loved unconditionally by the Lord. We, in turn, can reflect that love and radiate unconditional love to those we meet.
There are few examples of unconditional love in our everyday relationships. In examples of the greatest love relationships in the world, there always seem to be some conditions placed on them. In the parent’s love for a child, there are expectations. The parent may want the child to behave a certain way. When the child grows up and the parent grows old, there may be an expectation that the child will take care of the parent. Thus, this love is not entirely unconditional. In the love between spouses, there is always an expectation that the lover will make him/ her happy. We want the lover to provide us with the fulfilment we seek. If the lover’s behaviour does not meet our expectations we may argue and fight, and in some cases even break up.
The soul loves unconditionally, because God loves unconditionally. The soul and God are one and the same. If we tap into our soul and look at the world through its eyes, we can not only love unconditionally, but also feel God’s unconditional love for us. The Sun does not discriminate as to which flowers it will shine upon. It sheds its light on all equally. Thus, roses and violets, tulips and weeds all receive the same light. Same is the case with God’s love. It shines on all of us, whether we are man or woman, Hindu or Muslim, Christian or Jew, Sikh or Sufi, Parsi or Jain. It shines on us no matter what colour our hair, skin, or eyes are. When we experience our soul and begin to identify with it, we too can grow in our love of all people.
One of the most powerful illustrations of unconditional love is found in the teachings of Jesus Christ. The foundation of Christianity is based on the concept of love and forgiveness. As Christ said:
Ye have heard that it hath been said, thou shalt love thy neighbor and hate thin enemy. But I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that have you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you (Matt. 5:43, 44).
The world is in need of unconditional love. Just as we wish to be loved unconditionally, so too can we love those around us unconditionally.
True love means loving everyone. Saints and mystics point out that if we truly love God, we will love all of God’s children. As Christ said, “If anyone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen”(1 John 4.7-20).
When we tap into our empowered soul, we can become blind to outer differences of religion, culture, colour, and nationality. All can be seen as one family of God, and we can learn to channel the love of our empowered soul to all we meet.
Seeing Love Everywhere
The soul recognises its own nature of love in every living creature and in all life itself. As Sant Darshan Singh wrote:
He is hidden in every instrument, in every song and melody.
All creation reflects His glory.
There exists not a sparkling wave nor a fiery star that does not owe its radiance to His Light.
Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi has said:
The current of love from the one God is flowing through the entire universe. What do you think when you look at the face of a person? Look at him carefully. He is not a person, but a current of the essence of God which permeates him.
And Lord Krishna said:
He who is able to see My form in everything, who realises that there is no difference between different beings is, in fact, the true seer. Such a person I can never forget.
Seek the Love within
How can we find the intoxicating love of our empowered soul? It is not in the stars, or on the mountaintops, or deep under the sea. It is within us. Kabir Sahib said:
Within his navel the musk is hid, the bewildered deer hunts for it in the forest.
So also dwells the Beloved within the heart, yet the world knows it not and seeks Him outside itself.
We look for fulfilment in the ‘outer loves’ of this world which may give us transient joy. But we can have permanent joy. We can experience the love of our empowered soul. We can enjoy a richness to our relationships.
The writer is a spiritual leader.
Writer: Sant Rajinder Singh
Source: The Pioneer