Chapter XIII

Prem – Love

It is not easy to understand love because its True Nature and greatness cannot be described in words. It is a pure and delicate feeling or emotion, which can be experienced only by one who is in love. It is beyond the capacity of the tongue or the pen to describe it in any human language. Actually, love is another name for God. And just as it is not possible to reduce God’s greatness to mortal dimensions, so also is it not possible to describe adequately in any words known to man, the grandeur and sublimity of love.

Nowadays, people misunderstand the meaning of love. The spirit and the meaning of love can be ascertained only from a True Lover, and its glow or spark can only be seen on his countenance. If you wish to hear it described, you should ask Mansur or Christ, both of whom went to their death serene and filled with joy. You might even ask Mirabai, who drank a cup of poison as though it were nectar. You could also ask Arjan Sahib. He sat on hot iron plates, and exclaimed:

Thy Will is sweet!

Surrendering one’s life to the Path of love gives to life a unique and exquisite taste, which can be enjoyed only by a lover or by one whose eyes bespeak intense love.

Love is a beautiful und sublime experience of the heart. Books are full of the word „love“, but in the tears of love are flowing burning oceans. In the sighs of love there are thousands of tempests, and in the world of love there is no sense of time. A place where there is love becomes sanctified by it. In that environment there is a powerful current of exaltation, but it can be felt only by a heart that is filled with love. If we perform our domestic and other worldly duties with love, we shall enjoy our life in comfort and without any worries, because in the presence of love, the mind and intellect are powerless to disturb one’s inner calmness. Love does not influence only human beings. Even the animals and birds are subject to its elevating influence. Love is a complete cure for every kind of trouble.

Maulana Rumi says:

Oh! the intoxication of my love, be happy, well and strong; for you are the only physician and cure for all my ailments.

If we could experience True Love, we would be our own physicians and could bring peace and happiness to ourselves. Then all our pain and sadness because of our separation from the Lord, which are caused by our not understanding the principles of love, would vanish and the radiant currents of joy would fill and invigorate our minds.

It is love alone that can give peace and happiness. Without it life is dry and worthless, and even the joys of heaven are of no value. A palace will appear as dreadful as a graveyard to a person who is bereft of love. But even the ill-furnished and dilapidated huts are beautiful if they are brightened with the spark of love. Through love, even jungles become filled with happy life and without love, populated cities may appear bleak.

Love is the richest of all treasures. Without it there is nothing and with it there is everything. He who does not have love in his heart is not entitled to call himself a human being.

The world is beautiful and we are naturally attracted towards it, because the Creator of both man and the world is the same God, who is Love. God has filled both man and the world with currents of love, and the world is supported by love. Love’s magnetic power is at work throughout the entire world. The sun, moon, earth, stars, sky – all are sending out currents of love to others. Man has been created in the image of God, and God is Love. Therefore His quality of love is predominant in the world. Because man possesses the quality of love within himself, the entire universe, which also contains strong currents of love, is constantly attracting man towards it.

Wherever there is love there is life. Where there is no love, life is worthless. Actually, a man is not a True Man unless he has within him the divine spark of love. God, in the form of Love, is within everybody. Those whose eyes are open see all human beings as manifestations of God, like rays of the sun or the waves of the ocean. They know that the same spark of love has created them all. Therefore, who can be low or who can be high? Men in different positions of life and in different countries - be they yogis, sanyasis, brahmacharyas, Hindus or Turks – are all one in His eyes; and differences of caste, creed or country can never be of any importance to those who possess the quality of love. There is one God in heaven and one family on earth.

Maulana Rumi says:

The current of love from the one God is flowing through the entire universe. What do you think when you look at the face of a man? Look at him carefully. He is not a man, but a current of the Essence of God (Love), which permeates him.

Lord Krishna says:

He who is able to see My form in everything, who realizes that there is no difference between different beings, is, in fact, the True Seer. Such a person I can never forget.

God looks on all beings as the same. No one is better or worse than other. In His eyes there are no nationalities, races or creeds. For Him, all are His creatures. A person who understands this Truth is not capable of hating anybody. He is a lover of God, Whose Light shines in all human beings. He loves everybody. People of all faiths - Hindus, Mohammedans, Sikhs and Christians – are the recipients of His love. All religious scriptures, Saints and Masters have always preached this Truth: We should love every created being.

According to the Bible, Christ said:

Ye have heard that it hath been said, thou shalt love thy neighbour and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.

St. Matthew 5:43,44

A lover points out, by his own example, that the real way to love God is not through outer observances. Quarrels and disputes amongst persons of various beliefs are due to narrow-minded intolerance. Those who confine their love to their own countries or nations are also subject to the same narrow-mindedness. But one who places the ideal of love above everything else in his daily life is really following the command of his Lord. He is loved by the Lord.

A person who does not follow the path of Love is not honoured in the Court of the Lord. Such a one is entangled in the miseries of the world, and whosoever comes in contact with him is also miserable. It is the natural desire of all human beings to be happy, and happiness is the fruit of concentration of the mind. This treasure of concentration and happiness of mind can easily be obtained through love, because these qualities are the natural attributes of love. Without love, everything in this world becomes subject to miseries and misunderstandings, which cause domestic quarrels, religious disputes, bloodshed and even wars among the nations.

Man naturally desires peace of mind. He wants to be free from cares and anxieties. All this can be achieved only through love. Those who do not follow the path of love cannot have a calm mind, and these people also create difficulties for others. Without a serene mind, even the pleasures of this world are full of pain. Happiness cannot be achieved without love.

Love is not dependent upon anything else. It is an ocean of faith and fortitude. It is an ocean of strength and faith. It imparts peace and serenity to the mind and to life. It is of real and lasting value. All the things of this world appear beautiful when there is love. By the currents of love the entire atmosphere is charged with joy, and the spark of God’s light is visible in love. One who is imbued with love is prepared to sacrifice even his life willingly, and he does not follow the path of intellectual quibbling. There is no song that is sweeter than the song of love, nor is there any story more enchanting; in fact, the very form of God is love.

There are many valuable gifts of God in this world, such as wealth, beauty, strength, power, good health, knowledge, fluency of speech and worship. Man is naturally fond of these things, but they are all lacking in something. Wealth makes a man proud. Beauty makes him blind. Power and good health are the cause of cruelty and arrogance. Knowledge brings in selfish ideas. Intellect is a delusion, and to indulge in clever speeches leads one to falsehood and to garrulous talk. External religious observances and worship are the cause of narrow-mindedness and bigotry. Better than all these gifts of God is the gift of love. And such gifts are beneficial if they are combined with the sweetness of love.

God is Love. He is the Bestower and demands nothing in exchange for His gifts. Similarly, love demands nothing in return. It knows only how to give; hence it is free from all selfishness. A True Husband gives everything he has to his wife. True Parents are those who rear their children with love and expect nothing in return form them.

Love inspires generosity and obliterates selfishness, because it has no ulterior motive. If everyone in the world would live in the spirit of love, no worldly laws would be necessary. We need these laws because all have not learned to live in love, and as a result the world is entangled in a network of animal-like tendencies. If we would learn to love ourselves, our neighbours, our country and the whole of mankind, and God Himself, we should no longer be in need of worldly laws, because love begets love. Then there would be no lack of harmony or trust among the nations, and the only ruling power would be that of love.

Christ says:

Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven.

St. Matthew 6:10

That Kingdom is in our hearts. There (in the realm of love) no law is necessary.

So long as we do not love each other, there can be no peace in this world. Warships, armies, ammunition, submarines, cannons, tanks and atom bombs cannot create peace and harmony in the world. If we are engrossed in these things, we are thinking of things that will bring destruction to mankind, and thereby are responsible for cutting our own throats. The present-day wars give a clear picture of this situation. If, on the other hand, we were to love and understand each other, the result would be that we would live in peace, because in love there is no warfare. If we think of war and make preparations for it, talk about it and also hope for it, then we shall bring war upon ourselves. But if we think of love, plan and live with hearts filled with love, and talk about the blessings of love, then we shall get nothing but love. If our environment and the entire universe should receive nothing but rays of love (from everyone in the world), then there would be no need for any worldly laws. Wherever there is love there is no (need for) law.

When St. John became so old that he was not able to walk and was able to speak only with great difficulty, another follower of Christ took him to a gathering of children to deliver a sermon.

He raised his head and said:

„Little children, love one another.“

Once again he said this and then repeated it a third time, after which he was silent.

At that the people closest to him said:

„Good man, haven’t you anything more important to say to these children?“

To this he replied:

„I give this advice over and over again, because of all the qualities, that of love is the greatest need of mankind. If you would love each other and the current of love would fill your minds, you would possess all other good qualities. Love, and all things shall be added unto you.“

If you love, you will be a wise man. And when you become a wise man, you will definitely love. If a person is not good, he cannot be a loving soul.

Guru Ram Das says:

Those in this world who have love for the Lord, possess real knowledge, and if by chance they utter any harsh words, they do not hurt anybody because they do not forget the spirit of love and therefore love everybody. They are the chosen ones of God.

Guru Nanak says:

Oh God, if it pleases You, then only does one really and truly try to love, and the love of your devotees is constantly directed towards You. In such a state of love they do not care for sleep. They are not arrogant because their minds are fully concentrated in your remembrance.

In love, all the bad qualities of the mind and intellect such as anger, sloth, talking ill of others, hatred, and so forth, are removed, and we are able to control our mind by means of love. Love reigns over everything. It is so beautiful that wherever it abides, anger, hatred, and other similar emotions cannot exist.

The mind is like a crow, which has no other wish than to annoy people. But as soon as it is steeped in love, it becomes a swan and troubles no one.

Love is a soul quality and is inherent in all of us, but not everyone can avail himself of it. This ocean of all joys is within us, and we need not spend a penny to achieve it. As soon as the soul is freed from the filth and attachments of the world, real love automatically makes its appearance.

Arjuna Sahib says:

A man may be extremely handsome, clever, learned and wealthy, and may have in him many other good qualities, but if he has not developed the love of God in himself, he should be considered the same as a corpse.

Love is the cream of life. It is the beauty of the soul. By means of love the soul is brightened and its glow is reflected on the face of the lover.

Farid says:

I am not afraid of losing my youth, provided my love for God does not diminish, for many a youth has withered away for lack of love for God.

The kingdom of love has been the highest of all realms in every age, and every Saint has said:

„Love God and love His creation.“

If we really love Him, then we automatically love His creatures. To love everybody is to help one’s own self. If one is engaged in business or a profession and does his work with love, he will never cheat anyone nor deprive other persons of their rightful due. The world is always prepared to listen to the message of love because it is inherent in all of us; and if we practise it daily it becomes manifest in us.

A Saint may not write scriptures, may not build a temple, or may not give anything in charity, but loves everyone; he is loved by all. The well-being of this world depends on our loving everybody, or rather on all loving each other. In order to learn this, we must abandon anger, indolence, talking ill of others, hatred, and all other similar bad habits. A True Lover is not confined to any one language or creed. He crosses all such boundaries and loves everybody. Love is the fulfilment of the law. If you love, then you are not doing only a single act, but many more without your realizing it. By loving, you send forth the currents of love far and wide in your environment and thus benefit the whole world.

Love is the greatest and most wonderful constituent of goodness. A truly loving man is actually the king of kings. How can anyone praise God without love? Or how can anyone serve his country? He who has not developed the spark of love in his heart may appear to be living, but he is dead within. The entire universe is beautified by the glory of love.

Those who profess to be lovers of God and His Saints but hate one another and are prepared to fight and quarrel with each other on account of their narrow-minded beliefs, cannot even be called human beings, much less devotees of God. Love is the greatest of all gifts because it instills life into dead hearts. It is intoxicating, and in its ecstasy one is filled with bliss and his ego is destroyed.

People say that love is blind and mad, because a lover does not listen to anyone. But the lover of God is not blind. He has eyes that see the Truth. He sees only that One whom he wishes to see. He accepts only that One and believes in Him. He is not mad. He gives his heart to One alone, and is free from duality.

„Love is the Divine Law. It will triumph where reason fails.“

It is not possible to describe the sweetness of love’s qualities. Its flavour is so enrapturing that no one wishes to stop tasting it. Its fragrance refreshes the mind and gladdens the intellect, and a lover is always in high good spirits. Love has the power of magnetic attraction, and draws all beings into the sphere of its divine power.