Love first the creator to love best the creatures

Sometimes people think, “Will loving God make us neglect others? Will focusing on the one who is beyond this world make us uncaring towards those who are in this world?”

Not at all, because when we love God, we understand the fullness of his divine greatness – he doesn’t just exist beyond this world; he is closely connected with this world as the ultimate creator of all the creatures living here. Loving the creator in his fullness means loving his creatures too. Pertinently, the Bhagavad-gita (12.13) states that those devoted to Krishna become the non-envious friends of all living beings.

When we love God and relish his love for us, we can love others better because we are no longer emotionally dependent on them alone for satisfying our need for love. As long as we are emotionally dependent on someone, we can’t speak strongly or act firmly for their benefit, for we fear losing the emotional support we get from them.

Such was the blind king Dhritarashtra’s predicament in the Mahabharata – because of his attachment to his wicked son Duryodhana, he couldn’t do anything to stop that villain from his vile ways.

He professed to love his son – and love him so much that he neglected even Krishna’s counsel for his sake. Yet his love ended up doing no good to either his son or to himself. Love that inhibits one from acting for the benefit of the beloved is at best the shadow of love and at worst a caricature of love.

We can love others properly when we are not excessively dependent on them emotionally. And we gain such emotional independence when we are fulfilled in our relationship with Krishna. Gaining inner security and strength therein, we can act with courage and consideration in our relationships for everyone’s all-round benefit.

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