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Article CIX: Relationships in Vedanta

"I define love thus: The will to extend one's self for the purpose of nurturing one's own or another's spiritual growth." M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled (Page 81)

Love is a major theme in most, if not all, world views. Although relationship and love are words that often connote romance, these concepts are present in any interaction between two people. Most people in the world interact with other people, and these interactions may be approached from a Vedantic perspective to move along the path to enlightenment. Every interaction with another person creates some form of a relationship, and aspiring for ideal relationships allows one to progress to greater peace.

Love exists with numerous colors and shades, and selflessness can transform all of them. Greater peace results from aspiring to care for every person one meets each day, by experiencing the Divine that exists within all people. Each relationship with another person can be approached as a relationship with God because every person is truly Divine within. Whether the person is a daughter, brother, mother, son, father, sister, friend, lover, cashier, bus driver, teacher, guest, stranger, etc., both people in the relationship will find greater peace and bliss by aspiring for selfless interactions.

Pure selflessness represents the perfect form of relating. Selfless love diminishes the ego, allowing one to experience the Divine existence, beyond the individual. The greater selflessness one can achieve in relationships, the greater one will advance toward ultimate peace and enlightenment.

East-West Counseling & Meditation -- Modern Psychiatry Integration -- Himalayan Philosophy -- Penn & Stanford Medicine
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