Listener 1: There was no restriction about the percentages. My parents expected from me to just pass. So I really lived all my school life and even after that as I wanted. But now I see that I am regretting it. At present I think I shouldn’t have done that. But, I really loved what they liked. I loved it myself.
AP: Exactly! That’s exactly what we have been saying. There is one who is expected by parents and teachers to top the class. So he tops the class! Let’s say this man (pointing to a person in audience). There is another man whose parents expect, “You just pass and that is alright.” He also, just fulfils expectations! What expectations we had from him? (Pointing right) He will top. He topped. What expectations we had from him? (Pointing left) he will just pass. So he just passed. Both are regretting!
It is obvious that you will regret because you are only meeting expectations. You are only again meeting expectations. You are saying that “I am expected just to pass”, right? So you are just passing! You never went to the books. You thought that books are there just to pass. You never really knew what it is to go close to something or somebody. Remember,
Attention is love.
You never loved your books. You are just fulfilling somebody’s expectations. The expectation is, “Son will pass.” Son passed! Now son is getting irritated!
Listener 1: Sir I was living my life as I wanted…
AP: You didn’t wanted that way! You were fulfilling expectations! You just said that. “That I was expected to just pass.” You are fulfilling expectations. You attend to this case study very-very closely. In meeting expectations, we often fall in the same trap! We start thinking that I am not meeting somebody’s expectations, this is my own desire! In his words he is saying, “I loved it!” You said that twice, right? “I loved it” No, you don’t know love.
Love is not about meeting somebody’s expectations. Love is an internal call! It arises from that untouched point in the mind where there is no conditioning.
You don’t know love! You are using love in a very abusive manner. Love is not a light word! Love is a very-very important and sacred word. You don’t say, “You know I love to break somebody’s window panes. I come from a small town and I love to loiter around. I love to gossip. I love pizza.” All these are misuse of the word ‘Love’. “Oh, I love the way she walks”, you are misusing the word ‘Love’! You are in fact abusing it. You don’t know love.
Till the time, mind is not clear, how can it know love? Is love about having a good time pass? Is love about fun and entertainment? Is love about being in your small town and just loitering here and there? Wandering? Whiling away time? Is that what love is? Is that what love is?
But, I am not blaming you. That is the way the word ‘Love’ has been presented to us throughout our life. That is the way movie songs have brought the word ‘Love’ to us. There is that muscle man, chikna hero and there is that glamorous, doll like heroine and they fall in love with each other, is that love?! But that’s the love you have been brought upon. So it’s understandable if you have started thinking that that is love. That is not at all love. That is some deeply rotten stinking thing! Getting it?
Listener 1: Sir but I have been thinking on this topic since one or two days that I should have something… for example I watched the movie “Three Idiots” so I started thinking to myself that I should love something but I am not able to answer myself that what do I want?
AP: So let’s do something… What’s your name?
Listener 1: Ehsaan.
AP: Ehsaan. Ehsaan is saying, he saw a movie and after that he has been thinking that he should love something. Now he is puzzled, “What should I love? So let’s do something, let’s go out on a two month exploration tour. I am trying to find something to love.” You know just as people, they decide for deadlines. “Three months I must find a bride for myself.” You have seen parents? “Before the end of this year, I will get my daughter married.” That kind of a thing. Is love that kind of a thing? Where you will say, “I ‘should’ love something!” Where you will give yourself a compulsory discipline? “Go and fall in love!” And then what do you do? Anybody you see, you say “I love you!”
There was one fellow in my hostel, he used to fall in love every sixth day. Actually fall in love! And he would even get fractures, he would fall so badly. (Audience chuckles). So I asked him, “How do you know when you see a girl that you love her?” He said, “It is very simple! The girl is only there to fill in the blank. Love is already there! I have already decided that I have to love somebody by today evening. By today evening, I will find a girlfriend!” So that is the fill-in-the-blank. By today evening my girlfriend’s name is… “I should find love.” What is this ‘should’ business?
Is love a compulsion? Is love a discipline? Is love a forced affair? Will you force yourself to love something?
Love is freedom! Love is not about trying to find love. Love is about letting yourself absolutely free! That is it. That is it!! Love is not object based. Love is not about, “I love this person or I love this work or I love this book.” Love is your inner state of mind. Do you know what love is?
The purest definition of love is, when the mind is very-very joyful then that joy shows up in all your relationships. Mind you, all your relationships! Love is your internal joy spilling over.
I am so joyful that I come across a dog, I pat it! I eat in love. I come across a man, I smile at him. I don’t know him still I am smiling at him. I look at the neighbour and I wish him well. That is love. It is object independent. First and foremost, love is your internal state of completion. “I am complete within and joyful!” When you are that then that shows up in every relationship. Remember, every relationship, like the fragrance of a flower. When a flower blooms, the fragrance spreads in every direction and goes to everybody. The fragrance does not say, “That I will only go to my girlfriend, that I’ll go only to my owner.”
When the flower blooms, the fragrance spreads all around. When you are joyful then that joy shows up in all your relationships. You want to give and share that joy! Love is the name of giving and sharing your internal joy! Which means that only those people will experience love, know love, who first have that inner joy. The man who does not have inner joy, will never have a loving relationship. Because to give joy, you must first… you must first?
Listeners (in unison): Have it.
AP: Have joy! We are so occupied with loving somebody that we forget ourselves. We are so occupied with loving somebody, that we forget ourselves! But love is first and foremost your own inner state. Have so much that you can give to everybody! What? Money? What? Knowledge? Have what? Have that contentment which is everybody’s birthright. Have that contentment which is everybody’s essential nature. When you have it, you spread it! This spreading is called love. I and you are related, this relationship right now is a loving relationship. Love is not the name of some exchange. Love is not the name of some attraction. You cannot go out… you said that I watched three idiots and now I am thinking that I should love something. What is this?
Love is not about finding something. Love is about first and foremost dropping something, “I have my mind which is burdened under beliefs, a Lot of load, a lot of unnecessary luggage and opinions.” When those beliefs, opinions, conditionings, when they are dropped, what remains is the empty space called joy. When that joy spreads, that is called love.
Is that becoming clear?
The mind is conditioned, that conditioning is suffering, when that conditioning is dropped, the empty space that you have is called joy. The empty, clear, sacred space that you have is called joy. That joy has the nature of spreading. When that joy spreads to others in your relationship that is called love. So love is about sharing your joy, giving it! But to give it, you must first have it. To have it, you must first be clear of your conditioning. Clear of your opinions, beliefs, goals, targets, such things. A man who is full of opinions, will never love! Beware of such a man. A man who is ambitious and always looking at goals, he can never love. Be cautious of this kind of a man.
-Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity
Watch the session: Acharya Prashant: Love is letting yourself be absolutely free
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