Love and religion

Published On: February 24, 2018 12:30 AM NPT By: Deepak Acharya

Deepak Acharya

Deepak Acharya

The contributor for Republica.

It is important to know what religions have to say about love because our life is largely regulated by religion.

Many of us in Nepal celebrated Valentine’s Day on February 14. But little do we seem to know what religions have to say about love. This understanding is important for those who celebrate love and relationship. Religious side of love remains little explored.

All religions have defined love in their own ways. Gautama Buddha said: “You, yourself, as much as anybody else in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”  Osho says: “If you love a flower, do not pick it. If you pick it, it dies and it ceases to be what you love. So if you love a flower, let it be. Love is not about possession. Love is about appreciation.”

If you pick up her or him that will not be love but selfishness. True love or a love without selfishness is when a person’s concern in a relationship is happiness of the other person. Love requires sacrifices. In its purest form, love can be for anyone—for your partner, coworker, parents, children, grandparents and friends.

In Gita Lord Krishna talks about path of devotion and love. This path focuses on a life of service, prayer, and meditation, a life totally devoted to God. Lord Krishna says, “I am the same to all beings, and my love is ever the same; but those who worship me with devotion, they are in me and I am in them.” 

According to Krishna, the best way for the human heart to meet its inner wellspring is to calm the strong urges and unproductive emotional attachments. He says one can show love by giving, receiving, sharing and uniting. They are the blossoms which bloom wherever love grows.  God is seated in everyone’s heart, says Bhagawat Gita.  

Mind is the source of imagination, love, thoughts, intellect, affection and emotions. Attachment—for relatives, nature, and place, persons and all living and nonliving things—emanates from mind. 

Love can occur between two or more individuals. Love binds them in a unified link of trust, intimacy and interdependence.  It protects, preserves and instills positivity in life. Take love between a mother and a child. The mother loves the child unconditionally. Some love is immeasurable. 

The Bible says: “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.” 

We have a misconception about marriage and love. Marriage and love is not the same thing. Marriage is a social contract, love is heart to heart relation. But marriage can make an appropriate environment for long-lasting love and care. In the Koran Allah says: “Fear not, I am with you both; I hear and I see.” According to the Koran, love is another name of freedom.

It is important to know what religions have to say about love because our life is largely regulated by religion through the performance of various rites, rituals and festivals, seeking God’s grace for wellbeing of the family and the self. 

The author is the Chief of Community Information Network (CNI)


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