Love & the Meaning of Life

 By: Mochita Har Lev

The spiritual search is a search for meaning and to be one with the divine. While many people claim that love is the meaning of life, they usually mean a romantic relationship and not Love.

The spiritual search is a search for the meaning of Life

Relationships, as well as the raising children, have both been projected upon and given the job of being the meaning of life for many people. While both these aspects of life can be fulfilling, satisfying, fascinating and very meaningful, they can not be considered the meaning of life in essence. The reason for this is that any relationship, meaning full as it may be, if imposed upon one as a ‘meaning of life’, leads to deep attachment and bondage. The spiritual search, on the other hand, is a search for freedom.

Freedom and love are synonyms. In essence, they are different words but are only different ways to convey the same. However, when we confuse and mix this essence with our personal relatives, our spouse or our children, then we are either confused or simply misleading ourselves.

 

The path of Renunciation

Many religions and spiritual paths have solved the lifetime dilemma regarding adopting a monastery lifestyle. Renunciates, monks, priests and nuns have traditionally left their houses and responsibilities to dedicate themselves completely to the search for truth or to serve the Divine and humanity.

This lifestyle decision is a completely legitimate choice, but it does not suite everyone. While many renunciates have chosen this lifestyle in synchronization with their inner focus, some of those who have taken this path have done so out of fear, and out of a wish to escape life and life’s difficulties. In such cases, this is not an act of a true spiritual seeker, but a coward action hidden under a spiritual disguise. Let us be attentive and alert when we make our decisions in life and make sure that they are made in the light of truth and not fear based.    

 

The life of a ‘house-holder’

Many spiritual texts refer to the lifestyle that is not monotheistic as “the life of the householder”. The term ‘house-holder’ does not necessarily mean one who owns a house or residence; it simply means a chosen lifestyle that includes maintenance of a personal home, and, most commonly, of a partner and kids.

One’s spouse or/and children can be very supportive of one’s inner evolution; or, on the other hand, they can be very obstructing on the spiritual path.  Either way, it is extremely important to realize that they are definitely not it! Spiritual growth is the path to liberation; on this path, we can either choose to have a relationship or a family along this journey, or not, but let us not delude ourselves when clinging and regarding these as the meaning of our life.

A popular approach among many families that have spiritual interest in life is to make their family life their sole center of attention, believing this to be not only correct for them, but also the right thing for the spouse and children; but, the truth is that this cannot completely fulfill their life. Expecting other people to fill our life with meaning is wrong, and it can be the cause of deep disappointments, unexpected depression, as well as deformed and obsessive relationships.

 

Nothing personal 

This is not an attempt to minimize any relationship, nor to condemn family life, but rather, it is a wish to emphasize the importance of one’s relationship with themselves and the need for a personal search for meaning or the divine. A Real and loving relationship (any relationship) is one that supports each individual along their spiritual path, and facilitates their inner growth.

 

The spiritual search is not a search for a spiritual life; it is a way to transcend both the pleasure and the pain of life. The result is life of real meaning, happiness and freedom.

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