The Depth of Love
Love is a strange thing. We learn about it so easily and yet, we often distance ourselves from it – from loving and being loved. Either time makes us forget, we change our minds, or we simply move on. Where does that love go? Why does its intensity change and flicker on and off like a light bulb? When we read what the mystics say about the degree and depth of love they felt for their Beloved, it leaves most of us speechless.
Don’t hold back, there’s more where that came from
How do we develop the love spiritual Masters talk about? First of all, we must realize that this reservoir of love lies deep within the core of our being. It is the reason for our existence and our permanent link with the divine. We were born with this wonderful gift, and it is always with us independent of our circumstances. It is not something we acquire along the way as we attempt to satisfy our never-ending desires. Being ignorant, we are unaware of this treasure within.
As human beings, there seems to be a restlessness and a feeling of emptiness within us that makes us constantly search outside, as though one day we will miraculously stumble upon what we are looking for. We are so confident of our judgment in handling worldly matters, but in spite of our maturity, education and social standing, we are all children on this path. In the process of growing up, we have grown apart from that state of happiness within us. We can spend an eternity pursuing it, but our search will never cease until we strike upon the simple truth: that true happiness can only be found when we take refuge within in the Lord’s love. Nothing can fill that void within us except when we merge with the Beloved. We know that love is the one resource that grows exponentially the more we give. It is with divine grace from the Lord, that we gain the knowledge of how and where to tap into this love.
Longing for love … love for union
A devoted disciple once wrote to her Master that in spite of having an intense longing to see him, she saw only her vain attempts and got frustrated time and again. Why would the Master keep a disciple away when the need to see him was so intense, she pleaded? His answer was ever so simple: “Sister, longing is the foundation of spirituality.” Longing to belong. To be one with the Beloved. To experience a love so pure and unsullied that all our worldly cravings and sensual desires just fall by the wayside. To feel that type of love means to go beyond words, to contact the Shabd and drink unceasingly from that ocean of nectar within.
This is what we must strive to achieve through our meditation. It is the only thing that makes sense in our lives because it is the one thing that can be truly ours and that we can present to the Lord. When we earnestly cry out to our heavenly Father, we create our treasure in heaven. All else, the mystics point out to us, will be left behind. It is so simple: love, love and more love. That intense longing to merge with the Beloved helps true love to shine forth in our lives.
Saint Kabir proclaimed that love is the state of giving away one’s heart. At some point in the journey of our lives, we begin to understand that meditation teaches us the most important of all lessons: how to love and be loved. We can best show our love through more meditation – simran and bhajan. When we contemplate on our Beloved in the silent hours of our meditation, we will eventually experience what Kabir, and for that matter what all spiritual Masters talk about: union with the divine.
Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere.
They’re in each other all along.
Rumi, The Essential Rumi
As Maharaj Charan Singh commented in Light on Saint John:
When you come to me inside, I will show you things that you have never dreamed of and that are beyond the comprehension of the mind. Your happiness will know no bounds when you meet me within yourself.
We then experience for ourselves the full power of the Creator, the celestial music resounding within us, loud and clear, marking the royal road ahead of us. Life begins to have a different meaning, and at every step of the way we move forward with confidence and courage, accompanied at all times by the guiding and loving force of our inner Master, the Shabd, the true Word, the Logos.