Lasting relationships are based on love. And yet, why do so many loving relationships see unhappy endings? It’s not because love was lost, but because it was never really love; it was the look-alike, i.e., lust.
The difference between lust and love is that one is selfish while the other is selfless. Lust is based on ignorance and love on truth. Under the misconception that they are mere physical bodies, many lovers seek from their partners sensations that give pleasure to their own bodies. This is selfish lust, because the goal is one’s own pleasure. The proof of such selfishness is that as soon as the partner stops providing enough pleasure, the so-called love vanishes.
But real love is selfless. It’s about giving, not taking; it’s about the beloved, not the lover. True love is based on the truth that we are not mere physical bodies. We are eternal souls residing within our bodies. The eternal nature of the soul is to love God and all His children selflessly. When we understand this eternal nature of the soul, and when we experience the sublime pleasure of giving ourselves selflessly to reach the soul of another, then we know what true love is.
“When our desires get disconnected from eternal truth, they become lust. But when our desires get reunited with eternal truth, all of them become an expression of true love.” — Radhanath Swami.