Thursday, May 01, 2014

Speaking of love & affection

Love is such an important subject of our lives. How do we love selflessly and offer our love to all? How do we transform a possessive love to a giving love? How do we purify our love from one of discrimination to one of great compassion? How do we love in the spirit of this common saying " cultivate our kindness without conditions, and ground our compassion on oneness?" 

Love and affection - most people associate love and affection with a man-woman relationship, this is not exactly correct. Love and affection also applied to relationships in families , between friends, and among a nation's fellow citizens.

The world of love is wide and expansive. Besides loving our parents, friends, and countries, we may also love many other things. Some people love plants and flowers, love their pets, some other people love to collect mineral rocks, stamps, matchboxes, cars, phones ,bags, shoes, jewelries, watches, toys , and they derive a lot of joy from their collections. It is just as natural to love sentient beings with whom we can share our emotions as it is to love insentient things that do not understand our emotions.

While some kinds of love are healthy , others are unhealthy ; some are giving , others are possesive. What's love? Love has its pluses and minuses. From the perspective of its pluses, love gives us the strength to make sacrifices, to give, to encourage , to be compassionate. Love is like a roadmap, it gives life direction and a clear visibility of life's destination. Love is a like a blanket, it provides us with warmth and security. Love is like a box of chocolates, it is sweet and full of surprises. From the perspective of its minuses, Love is like a piece of rope, it can be binding and restrictive . Love is like a rock, it can shackle us and make us restless. Love can be blinding , it can keep us in the dark without us even aware of it. Love is like the honey on sharp blade, it can entice us to lick the blade, even at the risk of cutting our tongued and risking our lives. Love can be like a sea of suffering , it's turbulent talk waves can trap us in its depths. 

We all want to be loved. Some go a step further and want to share their love with those whose lives they touched. Regardless if we love or are loved by others, we have to be careful that our love does not turn sour become bitter or unpleasant. Love and hate are inseparable, one shadowing the other. If we do not love properly , if we do not expand our love to all, if we do not elevate our love (for a few) to compassion for all, love can turn into hate.

It is human nature to love someone with whom we feel a special affinity, but when the object of love is inappropriate, our love can bring us many headaches. When we love someone who already has a partner or is married, our love is destined for trouble. It takes two to love, when we love someone who has no feeling for us, it just like banging our head against the wall. Depending on the subject of our love, we should also moderate our intensity accordingly. If not, problems will ensue. 
One of the most common, though faulty, perspectives of love is to view love as some kind of trade. Some people believe that, because of their personal wealth, they can buy love. Others dare not love those who are affluent than they are. Some other people would not consider falling in love with someone without first considering that people's looks, education, profession, or how wealthy his  or her family is. In these instances, love is considered a kind of trade, this is an erroneous perspective of love. True love does not speak of requirements and prerequisites, true love is about giving. 

Some people only love themselves and have little regard for how others feel. In their continual pursuit of personal enjoyment , some even engage in xtea marital affairs. Others let their own emotions cloud thier judgement, they become biased to people they love and overly critical to those they dislike. Sometimes, love is like a pair of colored glasses, preventing us from seeing the true character of those we love. No wonder we sat that love is blind. There's a common chinese saying which we can use our guide," know the ills of those we love and the goodness of those we dislike". When we love properly, love brings out the best in each one of us.

Love is about giving; even if we cannot make huge sacrifices for our lived ones,the least we can do is not to hurt them". When a gentleman breaks off a frienship, he does not speak ill of the other party. While most people would like to see their romance develop into marital bliss, it is important to know how to handle a relationship when it fails. When friends part ways, they should do so amiably and not bear a grudge against the other party. How can one make an enemy out of someone whom one has once loved? To defame it destroy another person just because of a failed relationship is so unnecessary. 

Some people describe the art of loving in this way: young people love with their words, Middle aged people love with their actions, and elder people love with their hearts. In a nutshell, our love matures with age. Likewise, our love also evolved as we grow in spiritual maturity. From loving ourselves, our love grows to loving our families and to loving the entire human race. 

When we speak of love and affection, there are actually many levels of love and affection. Love starts at home, we love our parents, our spouse, our children and our siblings. From here, we extend our love to loving our relatives and friends. Going further, our love encompasses all human beings and then all beings. Love matures from a possesive kind of love into a giving kind of love. Finally love becomes the enlightened love for us. 

Love is like water. On the one hand, it can nurture our lives, on the other hand, it can drown us. Thus, if we do not love properly , love can bring us many problems and ruin our lives. 

Love wisely - we should use our wisdom to purify our love.
Love compassionately - we should use our compassion to manifest our love.
Love morally - we should use morals and ethics to direct our love.

This is a good booklet to read , after read you will ponder and learn more and spread your kind love and affection to serve the community, then our lives will be much fuller and much more everlasting !

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