the qualities of love



As I said in my last post, love is something that unites us all, and I believe deeply in the power of love to heal our earth.

The teachings that the Buddha gave on love are very simple, but this is clearly the crux of his entire message. Without understanding love — and practicing it — you will not understand the rest of his teaching.

Love is understood as being a combination of four qualities: (I invite you to visit my previous post, “the first quality of love,” if you have not done so already, to learn about maitri first.)

The second aspect of true love is called karuna, which is usually translated as compassion, or the intention and capacity to relieve suffering and lighten sorrows.
To develop karuna in ourselves, we need to practice looking and listening with deep concern to the real suffering of the world. When you know someone is suffering, being able to touch her pain is compassion. Being in deep communion with someone who is suffering can bring relief, giving comfort and confidence. With compassion in our hearts, the Buddha taught, every word and deed can bring about a miracle.

The third element of true love is mudita or joy. This does not need much explanation; true love will always bring joy to ourselves and to the one we love. If our love does not bring joy to both of us, it is not true love.

So, for love to exist, we must have the element of maitri, which is about bringing happiness and friendship to the one we love. We must also have compassion, and we must have the desire to bring joy to our loved one.

We are on our way! Tomorrow, I will post about the fourth quality of true love. Namasté.


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