Love is one of the great mysteries of life. It is something everyone wants and aspires to. The first experience of love begins at birth. We then grow to love our family, grandchildren, partners, music, art, and the beauty of nature. Poets try to capture love in words. Musicians write heartfelt songs expressing the joys of love as well as its sorrows.
In his book Love and God, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi says that:
Life expresses itself through love...
Every wave of life is full with the ocean of love...
Such a life is worth living...
A loving heart, a heart full of love, is the precious essence of human life...
Love is the most precious gift of God to us.
But why is it that so many of us love today, fight tomorrow? Why do almost one in three marriages end up in divorce? Why can't we sustain the tender impulses of love?
Maharishi explains that:
Those, who are restricted in their ability to love, those, whose love flows only in restricted channels of isolated objects or individuals, those who can only like this or that, those, who have no awareness of universal consciousness in their hearts, are like small ponds where the love can flow only as ripples and not as waves of the sea...
When a heart, shallow as a pond seeks to rise high in waves of love, it creates a muddle and brings out the mud that was so gracefully hidden underneath.
How do we get rid of the mud? Can we improve the depths and magnitude of our hearts? Maharishi explains that this is possible:
By probing deep into the purity of our being. By exploring the finer regions of the impulse of love that murmurs in the silent chamber of our heart. By diving deep into the stillness of the unbounded, unfathomable ocean of love present within our hearts. By a simple technique of self-exploration or by what is commonly known as the Transcendental Meditation technique...
It is easy for everyone of us to fathom the unfathomable magnitude of the ocean of love present within, and forever enjoy the fullness of life in the fullness of heart.
These profound words from Maharishi, contrasted against all the negativity we see in the world today, almost seem too good to be true. Perhaps we have been looking too much in the outward direction to find and culture the experience of love. Love rising from within is a state of being that is not dependent on anything or anyone on the outside for fulfillment. It simply is the reality of our Being. We just need to come in contact with this level of being for the inner ocean of love to begin to flow.
How does going inward get rid of the mud? We can equate mud with stress. We know that when we are tired or stressed it is easy to say things we don't mean -- we can lash out at our loved ones. This is "bringing out the mud gracefully hidden underneath."
As our minds fathom quieter, more subtle levels of the thinking process through the practice of the Transcendental Meditation technique (TM), we start to experience the impulses of love that murmur in the silent chamber of our hearts. Since the mind and body are intimately connected, we gain a state of profound rest -- much deeper than ordinary relaxation -- when we transcend thought altogether. This deep, healing rest allows accumulated knots of emotional and physical stress to be released.
The over 360 peer-reviewed studies published on Transcendental Meditation have shown normalization of hormone levels and blood pressure, and measurable improvements in components of metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular health, and brain functioning.
In time, the body starts to maintain a more rested, calm, and energetic style of functioning even outside of meditation. As inner stress dissolves, we become more resilient or immune to outer stress that may be coming to us from family, friends, or our environment. Through meditation, we can experience more inner happiness, fulfillment, and even love flowing from within.
In Love and God, Maharishi explains:
Love is purity, love is innocence, love is fullness, oneness and bliss. It brings fulfillment.
Love unifies the scattered ends of life and brings them all together into an integrated whole."
The ancient poet Virgil expressed the power of love in his epic from 37 BC: Eclogues X.69
Omnia vincit amor et nos cedamus amori: Love conquers all things; let us all yield to love!
Read more on the Enlightenment for Everyone blog, where this post originally appeared.