Simple behaviors and virtues that hold our love Strong and Pure.
" Love is a gift of one's innermost soul to another so both can be whole."
In the Buddhist faith, there are four elements of love that make it "true love".
These elements are not magical, or even spiritual concepts. They are simply behaviors and virtues that we must hold in order to make our love strong and pure.
These four elements of Love, are easy to grasp, but they make a relationship much more joyful and fulfilling.
Maitri is translated into Kindness or Benevolence.
This is not only the desire to make us or someone happy but the ability to do so.
You may have any intention to love someone, but the way that you love may make you both unhappy.
You can harness the ability of Maitri, by truly looking at the one you love, and develop a deeper interest and understanding of Who they are as a person. By understanding the person you love, you will, in turn, learn how to love them.
Take time to be attentive and observe your love. Listen to their words, and ask them about their hopes, desires, and ambitions. Learning more about your love helps to open the door to understanding them, and how to love them in a meaningful and fulfilling way.
The second element of true love is Karuna, meaning compassion. This is the ability to ease the pain of others, as well as the desire to. This is also based on understanding, the understanding of your beloved's suffering. Only when we truly understand someone's suffering, we are able to help them release their burdens.
Communicate with your loved one about what troubles them, and ask if there is anything you can do that will help in any direct way.
Opening this communication and developing an understanding and a desire to help, will heal and strengthen any relationship.
" There's no path to happiness; happiness is the path."
The third element is Mudita translated to Joy or Happiness.
This element of true love is one of the most important, and in some ways, it ties all the other elements together.
If there's no joy or happiness in love, then it's not true love.
If your love upsets you or distresses you, then either it was never pure love, or the love has been lost.
Love is fulfilling in essence and brings joy and happiness to those who share it. When we are in love and we sustain this eternal inner state of joy around it, our love grows stronger, and this is a sign it is pure.
Once there's no more joy and happiness in love, then there's no more love.
Take time to make the things you enjoy, both together and as individuals. It is this development of joy in yourself, that allows you to share your love with others
The final fourth element of true love is Upeksha, also known as Freedom.
When love is true, both people within the couple should experience freedom, in particular within the relationship.
Each person should feel free to be individual, to allow them to grow and develop in their own way. To enjoy time alone, safe in the knowledge that your love is doing the same.
There should also be freedom within the relationship, being able to feel comfortable sharing ideas and thoughts without fear of judgment.
Having freedom whilst also being able to be a part of a couple is a sign of the truest love.
Spend time apart from your partner without feeling the need to check up on one another. Do the things that you enjoy as an individual and feel proud of it. Once you come back together, talk about these things, and how they bring you joy and happiness.
Developing a sense of freedom within your relationship creates space for both people to grow.
May the knowledge of these four elements of true love make it a little easier for you to find it and cherish it in your life! 🙏
*Text Adapted from Dare to do Motivation's video entitled - Buddha's Four Secrets Of True Love