Each person is completely different from the other although the base is the same, right? For example, what we like and how our minds react…. not everybody likes the same things. Also, there are many different aspects to the way we like something. There are many different aspects to that.
Of course, I think a meditator who has been isolated for twenty years in a cave and suddenly must have a family, a wife and kids, I think he would run back to the cave!
So, I think, in many respects, to be a householder is more difficult than to be a meditator in a cave. Sometimes, being in the cave meditating could even be spiritual bypassing. “Oh, I am just going to retire to my cave. I am going to say I am patient because there is nobody there to make me angry.” Of course, you are patient. Wait until you are put into a householder’s life. Let us see how patient you are, then. That is a good question, right?
How do you practice patience with yourself? You must have the triggers, the catalysts. So, in order to have compassion, how can you practice compassion without other sentient beings? How can you practice patience? Even though the compassion starts within, you must have compassion for yourself, to know what it is and how to offer that patience and humility and everything. Of course, it is a vice versa thing. That is why, like for me, I do not feel comfortable sitting too high up. I want to relate to everybody as a friend, like we can relate to each other. For me, I learn from you. You learn from me. It is not like I am teaching anything. I am just sharing something. You are the one who is learning. That is the main point.
For me, regarding teaching, if you do not learn anything, then, I do not teach anything. So, it is up to you, not up to me. One of the aspects of the guru, the translation would be spiritual friend. So, it changes a lot when you look at it that way. That means we are all spiritual friends. We help each other. We support each other. We learn from each other. Many times, we learn about ourselves through other people. Many times, what we hate most in somebody else’s appearance, is what we do not like about ourselves. We see it in someone else. It affects us.
That is how we are. Wherever the mind goes, we go after that. You want to be the captain of your boat. You do not want to let the wind take you wherever the sail (is). You will most probably crash. So, you want to use the wind, the sail to get where you want to go. You use it. You adapt.
So, that is why you should always be aware of the mind. Where is it going? Where is it moving? Observe. Check. The more you check, the more you observe, the more you learn about yourself. You can integrate that into your life to be happier. Everything will be less, not so heavy. Like the bad things will not be so heavy because you will be able to see the relativity based on your perception. We choose how to perceive something. We have the power. We are the ones responsible. It is very easy to say things are not in my hands, but we must take responsibility.
Being a householder is a great practice. It is a very good practice. As a householder, the practice of patience is good. So is the practice of hard work, of discipline, of humility, of love, of dedication, of understanding, of great gratitude and of empathy. There are so many different qualities. Sometimes, I think, as a householder, you can progress much faster than meditating in a cave. Since you are bombarded by cataclysms all the time, you have no choice but to adapt.
Many people say, ‘‘Oh, I’m in love. I’m in love’’, but you are idolizing something. The things like chemistry, chemicals, endocrines, dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, all that, finishes off, wears off after three years. That is about the time they give it, three years for the physical chemistry.
“I’m in love. I’m in love.’’ When that finishes after the three years, then, suddenly, it changes a little bit the relationship. It is not physical, anymore. So, if you do not have a strong friendship, then, after three years, you have a crisis. You are idolizing, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. You want to change the other person. If you do not want to adapt, you want the person to adapt to you. You want to make them how you want them to be, because, then, you will like them more. You think it is better for them, that your way is good for them.
Each person is in their own point of evolution in their life. You cannot relate to them like, “I need this. He needs this.” Sometimes it is different. So, it is good always to give the space. Two birds cannot fly if there is no space, if they are stuck. If birds acted like humans act when they fall in love, birds could never fly. So much clinging. So much attachment. No space.
“What are you doing?”
“Where did you go?”
“Who were you with?”
“If you are with me only, then, I will love you but only if you are just with me.”
Then, you should not say, “I love you.”
What you should say is, ‘’If you are only with me, then, I will be attached to you. That is the way you should exist. “
So, from my perspective, I am talking from experience, you act like you have no choice. So, I had my son. I had to put him as a priority. Even then, there was difficulty with the mother. There were very difficult situations. Because the love for the son was over-powering everything, the problems kind of disappeared, dissolved. So, if you focus on the true love, then, everything else will lose power. Especially if it is negative, if it is not helpful, if it is destructive, counter-productive, de-evolving. That is good for two people to evolve, not devolve; to move forwards not to move backwards. You always have that choice. It is never too late. It is always early.
Even if a couple breaks up, if their friendship was strong and pure enough, that connection will always endure. The time you spend together is something you take with you as experience and memories. But the friendship is always there no matter what happens to the romance.