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Trials of love

Love is meant to be a free gift. Give but don't expect....

A mother loves her child unconditionally. From day one, she gives everything to the child. She puts her child’s needs ahead of her own. She teaches the child how to walk and navigate through this world. She teaches the child how to protect himself. If or when the child is in danger, she shields the child with her own self. She not only defends the child against danger, but she also teaches the child to recognize danger.

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Whenever the child is in pain, the mother suffers multifold-- she feels the pain of the child and she feels the pain in her own heart. When the child grows up, becomes a teenager, it is the age of revolt, it’s the age when the child enjoys newfound independence, it’s the age when the focus of the child is on their own self and their friends. At this age, in the back of their mind, the child knows what is right and wrong, but the child wants to experiment and take risks. The child is on a different high. The mother watches, worries, guides, and prays for the child’s safe return. A safe return is all a mother can pray for. Nothing more and nothing less.

After many years, when the child grows up, after exploring and experiencing much when they return to their mother, they are usually weary and tired from this world. No one, no one can match a mother’s love for her child. That is the power of unconditional love.

So, what is unconditional love? As long as you keep giving, nourishing, andcaring with open hands, love will remain there, it will always be there.

However, if you attempt to close your fingers around it or try to possess it, you will be unsuccessful. Love is meant to be a free gift. Give but don't expect. Love blossoms with faith, grows with gratitude, and is destroyed by demand. This may sound simple but it isn’t, because in those whom we love the most are hidden our greatest tests. To understand this, we will need to step outside the frame and look at the bigger picture.

God loved us even before we were born. Divine love created us and nourished us. We were born from love. Love is our true essence. Love is not outside us, it's inside us. And yet like the musk deer that searches desperately for the source of fragrance, not knowing that the fragrance emanates from itself, we too run desperately after the creation looking for love that resides within us. The need to give and receive love was put in us by God. The purpose of this need, the purpose of this search was to bring us back to God. When we seek to fulfill this need from creation, we get off-track and lost. The more intensely we seek or want the creation itself, the less likely we are to attain it or get enough of it. Anything of this creation sought for its own sake will either evade us or fail to satisfy us. Why? It is because anything of this world or this creation is part of the maya, the illusion.

They are our false attachments.

When we rely on an illusion, it is bound to cause distress sooner or later. When we experience pain or discomfort from our relationships, the purpose of the pain is to alert us-- so that we do not depend on others, so that we do not seek them, but we seek God. Rather than responding to pain negatively, we are expected to respond to pain with an awareness that it is a divine expression of life. Through pain or struggle, our inattentiveness to God comes to light. Pain compels us to mend our broken relationship with our Creator. Through pain and struggle, God detaches us from our false attachments and re-routes us to Himself. With each feeling of discomfort that we experience from others around us, we lose the attachment to them, until we have nothing in our heart but God. This discomfort is intended to help us free ourselves from distractions so that we may return to Him for lasting peace and stability. God wants to offer to us a solid and real anchor- Himself. Initially, it might not be possible to avoid pain completely, but by adjusting our expectations, our response, and our focus, we can avoid devastation. Step by step, we can get there.

SGGS Ji, Page 504, Line 19:

ਨਾਮ ਰਤੇ ਕੇਵਲ ਬੈਰਾਗੀ ਸੋਗ ਬਿਜੋਗ
ਬਿਸਰਜਿਤ ਰੋਗ ॥੧॥

नाम रते केवल बैरागी सोग बिजोग
बिसरजित रोग ॥१॥
Nām raṯe keval bairāgī sog bijog bisarjiṯ rog. ||1||
Imbued with the Naam, the Name of the Lord, I am detached from the world; I have forgotten sorrow, separation and disease. ||1||

When we wholeheartedly turn ourselves towards God, we reach true freedom.

Interestingly, after all the pain and struggle, we realize that the less we chase after the approval and love of the people, the more readily we receive it. The less needy we are of others, the more people feel secure around us and seek our company. Our greatest strength is in knowing that in God we have found a hand-hold that never breaks.

May our lives be an expression of His love.

May God allow us to feel love even where we can't see it.

May He allow us to hear loving words even where they were not said.

May He allow us to transform for love where change is inevitable.

May He allow us to bring love wherever we go.

Tvisha Ahuja

Waves of life bring happiness and sadness, and I am learning that suffering can be prevented by developing inner strength. I want to share what I am learning - Writing has great power, and I hope to use it to make this world brighter. 

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