A thing cannot be loved in the same way that you love a person. And if you love both in the same way you don’t know what love is. Love should be a definite quality. But the language does not offer many words – only one word for everything. It is simpler, less complicated, more utilitarian, but you cannot save the purity of the word.
This Japanese symbol for love – a man with a big belly, offering with both his hands – can only be interpreted in one way; there are not two ways. It is simply saying that you are so full that you want to share. And that is the purity of love, when there is no desire to get but to give. And you can give only when you are overflowing, you can share only when you have too much – out of abundance.
The picture makes it definite. But then you will have to learn millions of symbols for every small thing in the world. And it is too tedious, too tiresome; for each small thing you have to make a symbol. In Chinese, the symbol for fight or war is one roof, and under one roof, two women. It shows that if you have two wives, there is going to be a constant fight. So for all fights, this is the symbol.
In a way it is very solid. It has its own beauty and gives a definite meaning which cannot be easily corrupted; hence, you will not find in Chinese or Japanese any commentaries on scriptures. A commentary means you have to interpret.
In Sanskrit you will find thousands of commentaries on a single scripture, because Sanskrit is a subjective and emotional and poetic language, immensely capable of expressing any nuance of feelings, sentiment – the whole spectrum. It has tried to be perfect, and it has almost attained perfection. But in attaining perfection it has lost something of humanness.
Each word has many meanings – a dozen meanings – because it has taken all sounds as letters. Now it wants no meaning in life or existence to be left without a name. Even with fifty-two letters you cannot exhaust the whole existence, so each word has a dozen meanings. It gives a very flexible beauty to it, because poets can play with words more easily when there are so many meanings. But it creates a new phenomenon: the commentary.
Krishna has spoken in the Shrimad Bhagavadgita, and there are thousands of commentaries. The same line can be interpreted in a thousand ways. Now it has become a jungle of commentaries; you don’t know what Krishna really wanted to say.
It became such a phenomenon – it has not happened anywhere else in the world – that Shankara will write a commentary on Krishna, then Shankara’s commentary itself becomes a question – what does he mean? Then Shankara’s disciples start writing commentaries on his commentary, and so on and so forth, generation after generation.