Love is the joy of life. Strangely, “it is in giving that thou receiveth”, but most of us “demand” love and are impoverished thereby. Love begets love, this is a universal law. Loving others is a subtle art, and art follows no rules, it has to be artless to be called art! Any situation can be used as an opportunity to draw closer to someone in life.

Since we misunderstand that “being loved” is love, we always try to look beautiful and dress smartly so that we are loved. We run to gain power, wealth , status and glory because we believe that these ‘buy’ us love. Dependent love always meets a sad end in this world of change. Marriages,relationships and family ties change when conditions change. Love that depends on reciprocity alone, is commerce. A lover of the Lord will love His creation.

True love gives of himself easily and with joy. Worldly love is disgustingly commercial. We barter away our love for what we might receive. Such love comes under the laws of exchange in the market, it can never elevate, it can only degrade. So you “fall” in love. When there is abject dependence then each will have to continuously enrich the other for love to survive.

Love that liberates the beloved,  that does not seek his possession or subservience, frees us from our sense of “separateness” and achieves a blissful fusion.One feels uplifted, enthralled, sacred, even divinised and in tune with all. The Upanishads, Geeta and the Puranas thunder forth this ecstasy and freedom from fear. Love alone can hold homes, communities and nations  together. Such love  comes naturally to saints, but it must be cultivated and taught to children delicately, only by living it yourself in homes and communities. Love is another name for happiness.

Prarthna Saran, President, Chinmaya Mission, Delhi.