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What is True Love? A Deeper Insight

By Sadhguru Email By Sadhguru
January 2021
What is True Love? A Deeper Insight

Ever wondered about the meaning of true love? Want to know if unconditional love exists? Sadhguru shares his insights on a topic that is timeless, yet vitally relevant right now.

Falling in Love

The English expression, “Falling in love,” is significant because no one rises in love or climbs in love. You “fall in love” because something of who you are, has to fall. If not the whole of you, at least a part of you should collapse. Only then there is a love affair. You are willing to destroy a bit of yourself for the sake of the other. It essentially means that someone else has become far more important than yourself.


Unfortunately, what most people call “love” is just a mutual benefit scheme. Generally, we have made relationships within frameworks that are comfortable and profitable for us. People have physical, psychological, emotional, financial, or social needs. One of the best ways to fulfill these needs is to tell people, “I love you.” This so-called “love” has become like a mantra: open sesame. You try to get what you want by saying it.

Every action that we do is in some way to fulfill certain needs. If you see this, there is a possibility that you can grow into love as your natural quality. But people go on fooling themselves into believing that the relationships they have made for convenience, comfort, and wellbeing are actually relationships of love. I am not saying there is no experience of love at all in those relationships, but it is within certain limitations. It does not matter how much “I love you” has been said; if a few expectations and requisites are not fulfilled, things will fall apart.

Love is a Fragile Dimension of Life

I am not trying to belittle relationships, but there is nothing wrong in looking at the limitations of what it is. It has limitations, but that does not mean it has no beauty. A flower is so beautiful; but if I crush it, it will become manure in two days. I can destroy a flower in a moment, but does that reduce the beauty and significance of what the flower is? No. Similarly, your love is fragile. Do not believe fanciful things about it. At the same time, I am not denying the beauty that is attached to it.

But if you make such a fragile dimension of life the foundation of your life, you will naturally be anxiety-ridden all the time because you are sitting on such a fragile flower.


Love as a Need

On one level, if you look at it—I do not want to generalize this totally, but for many people it is so—love is just one more need without which they cannot live. As the body has its needs, the emotion has its needs. When I say, “I cannot live without you,” it is not any different from me saying, “I cannot walk without a crutch.” If you had a diamond-encrusted crutch, you could very easily fall in love with it. And if, after you used this crutch for ten years, I tell you, “Now you can walk free,” you would say “No, how can I leave my crutch?” There is no life sense in this. Similarly, in the name of love, you make yourself so absolutely helpless and incomplete within yourself.

Does it mean to say there is no beauty and no other dimension to this? There is. There have been many people who lived in such a way that they could not exist without the other. If it really becomes like that—that two beings have become like one—then that is wonderful.

How to Love Unconditionally

When you talk about love, it has to be unconditional. There is really no such thing as conditional love and unconditional love. It is just that there are conditions and there is love. The moment there is a condition, it just amounts to a transaction. Maybe a convenient transaction, maybe a good arrangement—maybe many people made excellent arrangements in life—but that will not fulfill you, that will not transport you to another dimension. It is just convenient.

When you say “love,” it need not necessarily be convenient. Most of the time it is not. It takes life. Love is not a great thing to do, because it eats you up. If you have to be in love, you should not be. You as a person must be willing to fall, only then it can happen. If your personality is kept strong in the process, it is just a convenient situation, that’s all.

We need to recognize what is a transaction and what is truly a love affair. A love affair need not be with any particular person. You could be having a great love affair, not with anyone in particular, but with life.

What you do, what you do not do, is according to circumstances around you. Our actions are as the external situation demands. What you do outside of yourself is always subject to many conditions. But love is an inner state; how you are within yourself can definitely be unconditional.

A Pool of Gratitude

If you do not count what you give but always remember what you get, you will naturally be a pool of gratitude. Drop this nonsense of “How much I have done!”

If you do not expect anything from anyone, you will live easy. If you expect something from someone, or you ask yourself whether they love you or not, then all these problems arise. When you do not expect anything from anyone, if they do it, it is wonderful for them. If they do not, what is the problem?

A Simple Process to Become Loving

For 15 to 20 minutes daily, go sit with something that means nothing to you—maybe a tree, a pebble, a worm, or an insect. After some time, you will find you can look upon it with as much love as you do your wife, husband, mother, or child. Maybe the worm does not know this. That doesn’t matter. If you can look at everything lovingly, the whole world becomes beautiful in your experience. You realize love is not something that you do; love is the way you are.


Sadhguru is a yogi, mystic, and visionary, and a prominent spiritual leader. An author, poet, and internationally renowned speaker, Sadhguru is the founder of Isha Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to human wellbeing. (www.isha.sadhguru.org)



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