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A Lesson in Love

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“The tragedies of the heart and the body are the weeping of children over their little griefs and their broken toys. Smile within thyself, but comfort the children; join also, if thou canst, in their play.” – Sri Aurobindo

My spirit broke the other day. It was a happy day and yet I grieved. Strange but love as we, the average type, know it, makes us behave contrary to our own nature. Sacrifice and compromise, devotion and dedication, understanding when there is nothing to understand, explaining when there is little to explain, questioning when indeed all is transparent … all this and more completely takes over our lives. And what kind of love you may ask brings about all this? Oh well, any kind – the love for a parent or a brother, a child, a mentor or a friend. Its all the same really, because in the end, each of these can be any of the others. A friend for instance can be closer than a sister or a mentor more influential than a father.

When moments of anguish come in one’s life, at times one cannot even decide whether to weep or to laugh at the absurdity of it all. The mind screams instructions, the heart entreats with its own sentiments, the body torn between the two undergoes convulsions and the spirit, well, if you are the average type then the spirit oscillates like a temperamental yo-yo between the dictates of rationality and sentimentality, between reason and emotion, between pros and cons, between do this and do that, between yes and no…flitting about in an endless lacuna  trying to find something to stand on, to stand still if for a mere second.

And if that second does indeed become a reality, it is then that the tormented heart, the rigid mind, the broken body, all feel a beautiful breeze that bequeaths peace and calm, setting matters at rest.

That ‘second’ wasn’t mine to have, this one time. But a partial realization of the nature of this thing we call love was. The illusions we harbor within ourselves regarding love and its dictates are so utterly ridiculous that it is no wonder that ‘once bitten twice shy’ was coined… but then so was ‘love is blind’… which one to believe?

I thought about it for a while and then did a test. I placed before me every individual I have known with some degree of familiarity and saw how at different points of my life I had applied both the proverbs to practically every person on that list. How strange. In retrospect I barely remember the pain caused by any of the others save the most recent one and yet, I’m certain it must have been hellish at the time. By that logic, time would remedy this present crisis and make me forget, make me forgive, make me blind once more.

The question then really is, when do we wake up and snap out of this world of disillusionment? When do we cease subjecting ourselves to such shallow and selfish perceptions of a thing that is so deep and delightful in its truest form?  When will love really become just that…just love, with no wise words attached before or after it? And by asking this question, can it at all mean that the ‘when’ is already here, it has already begun, and now it is just a question of  patience, perseverance and prayer before one is delivered?