IN SEARCH OF LOVE
In our search for Love, lets examine….Love Physical and Love Spiritual, what is the difference and in what way are they connected.
How many kinds of Love are there, and how many kinds of Devotion
Guru Arjan says ‘The people of this world do not know the path of Love and are wandering hither and thither like fools”
LOVE PHYSICAL how do we humans describe it ? lets look at some famous quotes ;
“One is obsessed with the loved one and is unable to concentrate on anything else. One loses all desire to remain independent, and instead desires to merge and subsume…into the other”
“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or touched. they must be felt with the heart”
“Love doesn’t make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile”
“ Love is but the discovery of ourselves in others, and the delight in the recognition”
“Love is loves reward”
“ The best portion of a good persons life; their little nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love”
“Love is a feeling that emanates from the heart and extends to every cell of the body”
“ We are all born for Love. It is the principle of existence and its only end”
“One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life; that word is love”
“Love is the only satisfactory answer to the problem of human existence”
“Love is above all, the gift of oneself”
“Love is the only truly creative force in the world”
“ Love thy neighbour as thyself”
“Celebrate yourself as you are a unique and precious being created by God for very special purposes”
At the human level there are many forms of Love….
Love and Intellect…Love and beauty…Love and knowledge…Love and Power…Love and attachment… Love and Lust…but no doubt the purest form of Love in this Physical plane is the feeling that one has for another that is so strong that one is prepared to fulfil the biblical quote of “ greater Love has no human but to lay down their life for another”…is this perhaps the ultimate test for determining true PHYSICAL love; if our beloved were drowning or caught in a fire would we , without hesitation, risk our own life to save theirs??
But to what end? for we are SPIRITUAL beings having a HUMAN EXPERIENCE ….life is just a stage on which we play many parts in this earthly drama …but like all illusions it ends …
Wouldn’t we be wiser therefore to focus on REAL LOVE, that is SPIRITUAL LOVE…that which has been eulogised in all the Scriptures.
All the saints have been and are worshipers of Love for they say “God is Love”
Guru Gobind Singh says that if we are fond of playing the game of love, then we should come with our head on the palms of your hands. In order to tread this path we have to sacrifice ourself without murmur”
Love is not a shop where one bargains; for where love is concerned, we have to sacrifice body, life and belief…on this path we have to sacrifice ourself.
In Love we have to give up greed ,temptations and desires.
Kabir says if we are prepared to sacrifice ourselves we can drink from the cup of love, but if we are greedy or selfish, we cannot do so, even though we may swear by or talk of Love .
God is Love ! thus Love is another name for the spirit of God ... Love, saints tell us, is the most complete and unshakeable force in life.... it is Love more than anything else that leads us to a balanced and happy life . It is the major subject we learn in this school called “earth”
So Love could therefore be described as “God in action” it is what melts all the boundaries and limits we impose on Life ... it is the most powerful force in the creation…without love, life is dry and worthless.
A mansion will appear as dreadful as a graveyard to a person bereft of love… whilst a hut is beautiful if it is brightened with Love.
Love is the richest of all treasures…without it there is nothing and with it there is everything
Maharaj Sawan Singh says “ Prior to the creation of this world, God was a vast ocean-like All-Consciousness. He was all Love , all bliss and self sufficient.... God was everything in Himself , in a state of blissful quiescence … his basic form was Love , it was not love for any other being…it was for himself, because none existed…it was part and parcel of himself…he did not have to depend on anything else for this…such is the indescribable condition of Love.
Love is the spirit of God…it is this spirit that upholds the universe in balance and harmony…that is why the powerful forces that move in the universe are not in conflict with one another and is how they coexist in perfect balance.... if we put ourselves in contact with the spirit of God we too will enjoy perfect harmony.
The same force that upholds the whole creation is also unceasingly supporting our own life and nurturing it... that force is Love.
The force of Love is the positive power of the creation and includes intelligence, joy and balance…Master come to put us in contact with this spirit of God so that we may break thru the limits we have imposed on Love, and live in that Love with balance and Joy.
The primary essential factors in developing Spirituality are Devotion and Love… whilst they are different names, they have the same meaning…there is however , some difference in degree between Love and Devotion.
Devotion is a spontaneous current of attraction which draws us toward our beloved Lord… whereas Love is another name for union with our beloved and enjoying the bliss of being one with Him.
Love is also our state of mind when we are awakened by deep concentrated joy in devotion to our beloved. At this stage devotion is fulfilled.
Love is true prayer to the Lord. When we , as lovers, are in that state of intoxicating bliss, where his name is repeated only once and we immediately behold and unite with our beloved…at the same time every cell of our body calls out to him, and tears flow from our eyes...we achieve communion with God by floating through the flood of our own tears.
By Simran and Contemplation we are able to reach the temple of his heart very soon, whereas fasting, prayers and worship are dry and fruitless.
All austerities, knowledge and contemplation are useless without Love; and without Love we remain devoid of any knowledge of God’s mysteries.
Various paths have been prescribed for meeting the Lord, such as repetition, austerity, devotion, detachment, knowledge, yoga etc; but Love is supreme and is the very life of all methods… it is only the touch of Love in all these observances that enables us to meet the Lord.
Guru Arjan says: “repetition”, austerity, pleasure, comfort, honour, fame, power…all are worth sacrificing for one infinitesimal bit of love”
Guru Gobing Singh says “O men,they alone have found the Lord who have loved”
Tulsi Sahib says” Whoever has loved , has found him, without Love nobody has achieved anything on this path”
In fact , all practices are for the very purpose of awakening Love, if there is no Love, then all forms of worship are dry and fruitless ... when Love is present, all his blessings come together; and without love they vanish.
Our family life, business or any other activity will bring happiness and all comforts, even if one particle of Love is mixed with them.
The Adi Granth says “ We should love God and all his creatures because they are part of him, and there is nothing else”
We have a natural connection with all creatures. God is our father and we are all his children…we should therefore treat others as members of the same family.
When there is Love , all thoughts and feelings hatred, anger or ill will vanish .
Love is the path of sacrificing everything. It is another name for giving away our heart…it is a power that is eternal.
Once true love is awakened in us , we are free from birth and death because we are immersed in the unchanging bliss… In this state there is no change , for our soul is fully dyed in the colour of his Love throughout the day and night.
“everybody talks of love, buy nobody really knows what love is. One has developed love when one is filled with it all the time”
Love is such a strong force that it cannot be broken or given up even if we were to try !
Adi Granth “ My love has been awakened for my Beloved, even if I try to break it, it does not leave me. The attraction is so strong, O saints! That I cannot give it up”
Love is the lifestream of this world and it is also the essence of this life…it is the core of purity and simplicity…without it, the whole world is empty…it is the elixir which keeps life in full bloom.
The path of Love is not the path of arguments andreasoning…we have to be intensely one pointed on this path…so long as our mind is scattered in intellectual quibblings and other pursuits we cannot have true knowledge of spirituality
Love unites two hearts into one & thus removes duality. In such a state it is not possible to separate them…just as milk & water, if mixed , become inseparable.
Dadu says that the true sign of true love is that we become the very form of our beloved while engaged in his contemplation. God himself then becomes our lover.
As lovers of the Lord, we are not worshipers of his qualities or attributes, but ourselves become an embodiment of these very qualities.
True concentration can come only through the company of our Beloved…this stage which we may not be able to reach by practice alone, even after many years, can be reached at once by merely gazing into the eyes of our beloved.
Love is such an intense intoxication that it takes us above the physical limitations… above good and bad actions and thus makes us one with God.
If we have a longing for the sight of God, who is pure and spotless, we should first wash away the dirt from within ourselves with the water of love so that we may also become pure and noble.
So how do we develop Love ?
Rituals and outer religious observances act like a nurse helping us to develop Love for the Lord…they serve their real purpose only if thru them the fire of love is kindled and we forget everything about ourselves and our worldly connections.
God is Love , and our soul is a particle of Him…hence love is inherent in all of us, but is in a latent state, because our soul is hampered by so many hindrances.
Love is a kind of fire which burns away all evil tendencies from the mind, it burns away all the dross of attachments that our soul has accumulated, purifying it in a moment, compared to thousands of years spent in other methods of attaining spirituality.
There are two ways of awakening Love within ourselves...One is thru the grace of our master, who is the manifestation of God; and the other is by the means of spiritual discipline.
Electricity is everywhere, but is manifested generally in the clouds, under certain conditions; It is also produced by certain physical contrivances such as batteries.
Similarly we open the treasure of love thru the grace of our master and secondly by practising physical disciplines, Simran (Repetition)…Dhyan Contemplation) and Bhajan (listening to the sound)… by the practice of Simran and contemplation, Love and faith are developed and these help us to be absorbed in the bliss of ecstatic and intoxicating union with God.
God is Nam and Shabd… God is Love… therefore, Nam and Shabd are also Love. When our soul is in touch with Nam, there is a constant flow of the stream of Love.
Love cannot be purchased nor is it produced in the fields , but the very fountain of love is present in everyone in the form of Nam or Shabd.
Guru Nanak says; “ Love is not possible without Nam. One can be within truth only by means of Love”
Nam can be bestowed only by our Master because he is a manifestation of Nam…therefore the most important factor for developing Love is the satsang and the company as well as the grace of our Master.
God is Love …and God is manifested in our Master; therefore only Master is capable of uniting us with the Lord…neither devotion nor love for Nam is possible without Master and Love can only be awakened thru the unbounded Love of our Master.
Devotion to our Master is the fundamental requisite for developing Love, as well as fear of offending him by doing evil deeds), by which our heart is connected with Masters heart.
To summarise then….SPIRITUAL LOVE ie Love for our Master is awakened in our heart by;
SIGHT ….having his darshan (beholding him)
HEARING …listening to his discourses
SIMRAN … repetition of his Holy Names and remembrance or contemplation
In these ways His noble qualities & sublime face enter & get fixed in our heart.
Our soul is a part of God, and Love is present in a latent form in our soul.
There are 2 methods of awakening and developing Love :
1. By means of the flow of love’s current from our Master, which intoxicates our soul with Love.
2. By means of following the path of spirituality, which awakens the quality of Love in us.:
(Sources “My Submission” & “ Philosophy of the Masters” by Huzur Maharaj Sawan Singh & Mira the Divine Lover)