Author Topic: LOVE - Editorial in Mountain Path - July - Sept. 2013  (Read 1314 times)

Subramanian.R

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LOVE - Editorial in Mountain Path - July - Sept. 2013
« on: January 18, 2014, 01:20:57 PM »
Love is a dangerous word.  It means so many things.  It has been overused, misused and cheapened to cover a variety
of delusions and half truths.  In the course of misrepresentation, its worth has stretched to cover the most unrealistic
expectations.  We all want to be loved, but do we realize that to receive it, we must be capable of love ourselves?  The
well known karma yogi, J.P. Vaswani's saying, 'If you want to be happy make someone else happy.', can equally be
applied to love.

Mostly people experience instinctive and emotional love.  Rarely do they encounter intelligent or conscious love.  Love in
its purest form is impersonal.  It cannot be bought nor is it a presumed right.  It is a knack like any other skill and requires
effort, patience, and perseverance.  It is not something we are naturally endowed with though the potential is there.  It is
not an object we can consume or own, in other words, it is a material but a living principle that cannot be 'gained' except
by the surrender of our own selfish interests.  We do not possess it, it possesses us.  We can enter the zone of love but
we cannot manipulate it for that is anathema to the principle of that which is freely given is also freely received.

On a physical level, love is confused with chemistry.  Our physical bodies are composed of certain elements which uniquely
combined create 'me', the physical body we are so attached to, and by which we measure our happiness, which more often
than not, is confused with pleasure.  We are attracted or repulsed by others because of the electromagnetic elements which
give life to those bodily elements of ours.  It is impersonal though we can it oh so personally if we are liked or more noticeable,
disliked for no apparent rational reason. Ultimately it has nothing to do with our conscious preferences.  There are some who
are immediate friends spontaneously and there are others who will be our adversaries no matter what we say or do.  Love and
hate at this level are two sides of the same coin and one can easily flip over into other.  Instinctive love is guided by the law
of affinity, nothing more.  It does however govern most marriages and relationships both personal and public. Hence the
perpetual insecurity and anxiety we tolerate hoping that all is well while at the time there is the wild ricochet of uncertainty.
Nevertheless, there are admirable examples of instinctive love such as mother's unconditional love for her baby, where the
baby's well being transcends all other considerations.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.               

Subramanian.R

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Re: LOVE - Editorial in Mountain Path - July - Sept. 2013
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2014, 10:43:09 AM »
continues....

Today we have loaded love with so many expectations that it is absurd and cannot but cause unnecessary suffering through
ignorance, both of our own motives and those of the recipient.  In more traditional societies a person is defined by his duties and relationships to other members  the extended family.  Increasingly, today a person defines himself by his own dreams, desires
and expectations.  Unless this motive is consciously altruistic, narcissism dominates our impulses.  It is a self love that has its
own agenda and cannot see beyond the walls of its own creation.  Ultimately it is petty.  It is like thinking the whole world
is encased in one trifling space while outside it the magnificent unbounded stars stretch beyond all horizons.  In simple terms
we want others to love us because we want to be loved and not because we warrant it.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.   

Subramanian.R

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Re: LOVE - Editorial in Mountain Path - July - Sept. 2013
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2014, 12:31:55 PM »
continues....

The second form of love we experience is concerned with ideals and aspirations.  It is the power which generates aims and
fosters ambition.  The emotional energy we generate finds its fulfillment specifically in beauty, wealth, fame, power and in
general, the satiation of our desires in whatever form they may take.  National pride and self esteem, identification with a
sports team or a movie star are but some examples which characterize the craving to express the surge of energy which
courses through our nerves.  It is heroic and inspirational but more often than not it can be blind.  Our fantasies are for the
most part doomed as they have little relationship to the hard rock of our normal reality.  However, not all our dreams are
necessarily delusions but can sometimes be the blue prints of a higher and nobler existence.  We may dream of being at one
with Arunachala and his tenuous thread can guide us to its actuality.  Dreams are a beginning; their certainty is on an
entirely different matter.

The third force at work we can call conscious love.  It is the love we hold for truth, it is the power that drives us to sacrifice
ourselves for others whom we cherish, and it is the sense of at-oneness with all creation.  "The conscious love motive, in
its developed state, is the wish that the object should arrive at is own native perfection, regardless of  the consequences
to the lover."  (Orage, A.R. On Love, first republished in 1924, and thereafter frequently reprinted and anthologized.  It
is easily available on the internet at www.holybooks.com/on-love-adapted-tibetan-orage/

Though it is generally thought that Bhagavan was a pure Jnani (Self Realized) free of any spiritual, emotional or personal
attachment, we see in His poems to Arunachala that He was just as much a bhakta (devotee).  There is no contradiction
in this.  Those who think that one must be devoid of all human qualities to qualify as a Jnani do not understand the profound
integral harmony which exists in a truly self realized being.  Bhagavan was a friend to all who came to Him with an open heart.
He loved to laugh and was amused by the foibles of human behavior. He listened intently to the stories of the saints, so
much that He wept for all the suffering they had endured. He was a supreme listener and rarely interrupted.  He cried with those
who came to Him in search of solace at the loss of a dear one.  His compassion was as broad as the sky.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.                           

Subramanian.R

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Re: LOVE - Editorial in Mountain Path - July - Sept. 2013
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2014, 10:32:52 AM »
continues....

There are innumerable reports by those who were fortunate enough to receive that inimitable glance of grace from
Bhagavan by which their lives were transformed instantly.  He was no cold statue observing from on high the troubles
of others but one who easily shifted from one level to another to offer comfort and guidance.

All this may be interesting as historical fact and we could perhaps say so what, how does it help us?  It is difficult to argue
unless one has intimate direct experience of His Grace. All one can say is that that entity we call Ramana Maharshi is still very
much present.  How or why is beyond us, but the indubitable fact is that  'He' does exist and does intervene in our lives to
our benefit and undying gratitude.

Love as we know requires two separate entities: the lover and the beloved. What we are asking for is that two become one.
Mathematically that is impossible.  However if we realize there is no difference between us, the lover and the beloved merge
into one.  Again, that is impossible physically and it seem even more impossible between a supposed Hill of stone and a human
being.  The one way it can occur is if we give up our sense of identification with who we think we are, and dissolve the sense
of separation by holding onto Bhagavan through love in the heart.  'Better than viewing Him as other than oneself is to hold
Him as 'I' within.  (Upadesa Undiyar, Verse 8).  At this point Jnana and Bhakti and Yoga meet.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.           

Subramanian.R

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Re: LOVE - Editorial in Mountain Path - July - Sept. 2013
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2014, 07:31:10 AM »
continues.....

Bhagavan has expressed pure love in Sri Arunachala Aksharamanamalai, which is an ecstatic hymn of praise, poetry,
entreaty, prayer and gratitude.  It is also an exposition of undiluted Jnana Yoga.  How then can we possibly emulate Him?
We can by turning to His poetry and seeing the power and passion which drives His adoration.  We learn through observation
and imitation, and the dynamics of spirituality is no different.  To those who say they feel no love in the hearts the apparently       
cynical advice, 'If you can't make it, then fake it.', has a surprising efficacy. If when all else fails and if one persists in the
appearance of spirituality, it is amazing how often pure spirituality results because here appearance is reality.

How is it with Bhagavan that it seems effortless?  Bhagavan does not see the same way as us.  He is like us but yet He
is not in a most fundamental way and we should be very careful not to confuse the two.  Just as with discrimination we can see
behind the facade of others, so Bhagavan with the eye of devotion sees beyond the stony surface that covers the Hill of Fire.
And in just the same way, He sees behind our crippling sense of limitation the same glory of divinity in all of us.

Bhagavan is an intimate, caring, tender friend but Hi is also a lion who is implacable in the face of deceit.  Make no mistake --
it would be foolish of us to take Him for granted or to confuse Him with a historical personage. We will not find Bhagavan external
to our self.  Bhagavan is not in a statue or a Lingam or a photo.  These are aids to focus, nothing more.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.       

Subramanian.R

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Re: LOVE - Editorial in Mountain Path - July - Sept. 2013
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2014, 07:14:54 AM »
continues.....

Once He was a historical figure but not now, -- He is not bound by any concepts we may cultivate .  He is a force,
a stream of Consciousness and much like the measured tides of the ocean, His authority is impersonal and it washes
over us with benign intent or cool refusal to be deceived by our false pretences.  We approach Him with a receptive
mind and a trusting heart.  If don't it is impossible for us to receive that unmistakable flow of grace.

"He lays no great burden upon us; a little remembrance of Him from time to time; a little adoration; sometimes to pray
for His Grace, sometimes to offer Him our sorrows, and sometimes to offer Him thanks for the benefits He has given us and
still gives us, in the midst of our troubles....the least remembrance will always be acceptable to Him.  You need not cry very
loud. He is nearer than you think."

- Brother Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God.

concluded.

Arunachala Siva.