The search for love
We search for love and try to get love, and yet it seems we never get enough. Even when we’ve found it, it can easily slip away as time passes. What if there is a source of love that never fades and is always available? What if you have been looking for love in all the wrong places?
How can I get more love in my life?
The problem with this question is that it assumes you don’t have enough love right now and that you have to do something about it. It also assumes that love is something we get from other people. When we believe we lack love, we create a sense of lack within ourselves, and that sense of lack becomes somewhat of a self-fulfilling prophecy, as people sense that we want something from them. When we are looking to get something from people, even love, it’s coming from the ego, which is a place of self-centeredness, tension and discontentment ”What can you do for me?” Those who are looking for something to fulfil them from the outside aren’t likely to find it because we can never get enough love from outside ourselves to fulfil the ego’s sense of lack. The only solution to wanting more love is realizing the truth about love: The way to have the experience of love is to give love. When love is flowing from us, we experience love. It doesn’t come from others. The source of love is inside us and we experience love when we choose to give it to others.
We think of love as a feeling, an emotion, but true love is more of a being and a doing, a giving and an outpouring. It’s a state of acceptance, openness, kindness and receptivity to another. Loves gives, it listens, it caresses, it nourishes, it nurtures. It does what ever is needed of it. Love naturally responds to life as life presents itself. Love flows whenever we aren’t complaining about life, wanting something different or judging and evaluating what is going on.
Romantic love isn’t like that at all. Romantic love is a giddy feeling, an excitement, and anticipation of getting something from someone. It makes us feel like a kid at Christmas “Yuppie – I’m getting what I want” Romance is exciting, fun and feels wonderful but it’s not really love. It’s too self-centred for that. When we are in love we are often oblivious of the needs of others, as we have only the beloved on our mind. We become fascinated and obsessed with the beloved to the exclusion of everything else. We love the beloved, not for what he or she is, but for what we think that person might mean to us and to our life. The feelings of romantic love are created by an illusion (psychological Projection) and by the release of certain chemicals in the brain. Romantic feelings are a very different kind of love than true love.
Why is it so difficult to love unconditionally?
Love as an unconditionally state of mind is a challenging and difficult condition to achieve because of our ego (thoughts and beliefs), which is programmed to react to difference, is running the voice in our head. So as long as we identify with the voice in our head we are bound to feel tension between others, and ourselves especially when we perceive differences. Since every person is entirely unique from one another this tension is nearly on going.
The ego’s approach to differences is to point them out, judge them, argue with them, attack them and trying to change them. That way it feels superior, defensive or angry instead of loving, kind and compassionate or even curious.For the ego, relationships are difficult and stressful and other people are never quite right. It’s convinced; the problem is that the right person just hasn’t come along. “If only the right person would come into my life, then I could relax and live happily ever after” Even those in relationships often secretly dream of another more perfect relationship.This is how the ego deals with every aspect of life, not only relationships. It longs and hopes for a better this and a better that. It isn’t satisfied with life, no matter what life brings. It sees life as falling short no matter what happens and sees relationships this way as well. As long as we identify with our ego/thoughts we will never be satisfied with life or with relationships.
Being in a long lasting relationship
As all the social, political, and economic structures in our society seems to enter the final stage of collapse, the relationships between men and women reflect the deep state of crisis in which humanity now finds itself. Never before have relationships been as problematic and conflict ridden as they are now. As you may have noticed, they are not here to make you happy or fulfilled. If you continue to pursue the goal of salvation through a relationship, you will be disillusioned again and again. But if you accept that the relationship is here to make you more conscious of yourself instead of happy, then the relationship will offer you real enlightens.
The dysfunctional relationship
Since we have become increasingly identified with our mind, most relationships are not rooted in Being and therefore turn into a source of pain and become dominated by problems and conflict. Millions are now living alone or as single parents, unable to establish an intimate relationship or unwilling to repeat the insane drama of past relationships. Others go from one relationship to another, from one pleasure-and-pain cycle to another, in search of the elusive goal of fulfilment. Still others compromise and continue to be together in a dysfunctional relationship in which negativity prevails, for the sake of the children or security, through force of habit, fear of being alone, or some other mutually "beneficial" arrangement, or even through the unconscious addiction to the excitement of emotional drama and pain.
From deniel to acceptance
Every crisis represents not only danger but also opportunity. Why not cooperate with it instead of avoiding relationships or continuing to pursue the phantom of an ideal partner as an answer to your problems or a means of feeling fulfilled? The opportunity that is concealed within every crisis does not manifest until all the facts of any given situation are acknowledged and fully accepted. As long as you deny them, as long as you try to escape from them or wish that things were different, the window of opportunity does not open up, and you remain trapped inside that situation, which will remain the same or deteriorate further. With the acknowledgment and acceptance of the facts also comes a degree of freedom from them. So whenever your relationship is not working, whenever it brings out the "madness" in you and in your partner, be glad. What was repressed is being brought up to the light. It is an opportunity for change. The relationship then becomes your spiritual practice.
Taking your relationship to a higher level
If you both agree that the relationship will be your spiritual practice, so much the better. You can then express your thoughts and feelings to each other as soon as they occur, or as soon as a reaction comes up, so that you do not create a time gap in which an unexpressed or unacknowledged emotion or grievance can fester and grow. Learn to give expression to what you feel without blaming. Learn to listen to your partner in an open, non-defensive way. Give your partner space for expressing him or-herself. Be present. Accusing, defending, attacking ― all those patterns that are designed to strengthen or protect the ego or to get its needs met will then become redundant. Giving space to others ― and to yourself ― is vital for love to flourish. When the ego has been transmuted and you are no longer identified with mind and mental positions, and if your partner has done the same, you will experience the bliss of the flowering of relationship. Instead of mirroring to each other your pain and unsatisfied mutual addictive ego needs, you will reflect back to each other the love that you feel deep within, the true love that has no opposite.