Blog Relationships

Words of Wisdom

Words of Wisdom on MarriageAn essential part of a Vedic wedding is to have the august presence of spiritual preceptors, elders and other senior guests from both sides of the family. To receive blessings from such spiritually enlightened personalities is considered so auspicious for the new couple. Blessings come in many forms. One of the most important forms of blessings is to get to hear words of wisdom and knowledge from such personalities, for their words come from many years of ardent spiritual practice and realizations and service to their own spiritual preceptors. Their words can be our source of guidance for rest of our lives.

One such wedding was that of Sachin and Neha (names changed for privacy). They had Radhanath Swami as their esteemed guest of honor. After the ceremony of ‘Kanya Daan’, Radhanath Swami spoke eloquently to all the assembled guests and the newly weds explaining the significance of marriage and the duties of a husband and a wife towards each other.

Some years passed after the wedding and Neha started to experience many varieties of harshness in the behavior of her family towards her. Her in laws especially treated her very rudely and it kept getting worse steadily. Her husband Sachin found himself unable to do anything to make things better, on the contrary, he would only keep chiding his wife that she does not adequately respect his parents. The matter got so horrible for Neha with constant mental torture and physical abuse. The major issue between them was that each of them felt there is no respect for the other’s parents.

When Sachin and Neha’s spiritual mentors became aware of the situation, they tried to help them understand each others role in making this marriage work and what havoc it would create if they end up in a divorce. It did not seem to make things better. At one point of time, their spiritual mentors discussed the matter with Radhanath Swami. Radhanath Swami told them something very profound, “most marriages in a spiritual organization end because of mundane desires in the heart that the partner does not fulfil, it is seldom because of any spiritual concern. We rarely hear of marriages in a spiritual society breaking because of the spouse not allowing the husband/wife to follow the spiritual principles”.


Sachin and Neha decided upon the inevitable way to end their mutual suffering – divorce. Before going ahead with divorce they lived separately for almost three years. After this difficult period of a three year separation, the family court pronounced January 14th 2008 as the day when both of them will officially divorce. Just the day before, Sachin met Radhanath Swami and asked, “What should I do?” Radhanath Swami told him, “What did I advice you on the day of your wedding? Just meditate on that.”

Sachin heard the recorded address that Radhanath Swami spoke on the day of his wedding and felt tremendous amount of transformation. In the courtroom he sat face to face with Neha and they both mutually decided to give their marriage one more chance. Today, both of them are living a happy life of contentment on all levels.


Ripples in the pool

God The Center“Like a radio antenna constantly emitting circles of energy, our hearts naturally want to constantly expand our feelings of love” — Radhanath Swami.

An infant thinks only about its own desires and needs. But as the child grows older, its loving propensity begins to expand. It wants to share what it has with others, wants to play with others, and wants to develop relationships with others. Its affection could expand, starting from its parents, to friends, to community, to nation, to humanity, and even to all living beings.

Despite this natural propensity of love to expand, why is there so much frustration in our attempts to find love? Rather, there is disunity within this world on every level: economically, politically, socially and even within the family. Why? Because of a missing common center. An example will illustrate this. When we throw a pebble in a swimming pool, the ripples expand to the brink of that pool. But if the ripples created by different pebbles have different centers, they will collide.

Similarly, in marital relationships, if the desires of both the husband and wife don’t expand from a common center, there will be clashes. There will be frustration as repeated attempts to find true love fail. The solution is to find a common centre. And what is the common centre? According to Bhagvad Gita, and according to every scripture in the world, God is the common centre. If one learns to love God, one will automatically love His parts and parcels – and most definitely, the spouse too.



The Wisdom of the Porcupines

God awards those who weathered all their differences to base their life on a higher principle, with deep affection and love for each other. Then marriage becomes a wonderful experience.-Radhanath Swami


To forget our mundane differences or to learn to tolerate them with a sense of responsibility towards each other becomes very easy when we lead a life with a higher goal. And when that higher goal is directed towards love of God, we gradually develop faith and loyalty towards each other. We soon become the best of friends, and those little differences seem much more tolerable than before.


A story: one winter, many animals died because of cold. The porcupines, realizing the situation, decided to group together. This way they covered and protected themselves; but the quills of each one wounded their closest companions even though they gave off heat to each other. Because they could not tolerate this pain after a while, they decided to distance themselves from the other and soon they began to die, alone and frozen. So they had to make a choice: either accept the quills of their companions or disappear from the Earth. Wisely, they decided to go back to being together and learned to live with the little wounds that were caused by the close relationship with their companion, but the most important part of it was the heat that came from the others. In this way they were able to survive.


Moral of the story: The best relationship is not the one that brings together perfect people, but the best is when each individual learns to live with the imperfections of others and can admire the other person’s good qualities. In other words: Learn to love the pricks in your life.


Radhanath Swami Tolerate

Aspire to be a china cup

China Cup“For a relationship like marriage to work in this world, it is very difficult! In fact, for anything great to work in this world, it is very difficult.”-Radhanath Swami

If we want a relationship to have deep substance, deep meaning and deep fulfillment, difficulties have to be endured. Just like the beautiful china cup which was once just a lump of red clay. The potter rolled it, pounded and patted it over and over, though the lump of clay did not like it. And that was not the end. The potter then placed it on a spinning wheel, spun that clay to dizzying speed, poked, prodded and bent the clay out of shape to suit his needs. The potter then put the clay in the oven and treated it to torturous heat. Though it went through unbearable times, there was more in store. The clay was put through cold treatment, brushed and painted with choking fumes, and laid back in the oven twice as hot. When the clay thought what was next, the potter placed it before a mirror and in that mirror it saw the unbelievable. The red lump of clay had transformed into the most beautiful china cup!

God knows what he’s doing for each of us. He is the potter, and we are his clay. He will mould us and expose us to pressures of just the right kinds that we may be made into a flawless piece of work to fulfill his good, pleasing and perfect will. So, when life seems hard, and you are being pounded and patted and pushed almost beyond endurance; when your world seems to be spinning out of control; when you feel like you are in a fiery furnace of trials, just know that at the end of it all, your life is set to be transformed into something beautiful that you never imagined.

When we endure difficulties in our relationships knowing for a fact that it will help us grow into a beautiful person, God enables us to grow.