Relationship is a structure, and love is unstructured. So love relates, certainly, but never becomes a relationship. Love is a moment-to-moment process. Remember it. Love is a state of your being, not a relationship. There are loving people and there are unloving people. Unloving people pretend to be loving through the relationship. Loving people need not have any relationship – love is enough.
Be a loving person rather than in a love relationship – because relationships happen one day and disappear another day. They are flowers; in the morning they bloom, by the evening they are gone.
You be a loving person, Mantra.
But people find it very difficult to be a loving person, so they create a relationship – and befool that way that “Now I am a loving person because I am in a relationship.” And the relationship may be just one of monopoly, possessiveness, exclusiveness.
Relationship may be just out of fear, may not have anything to do with love. Relationship may be just a kind of security – financial or something else. The relationship is needed only because love is not there. Relationship is a substitute.
Become alert! Relationship destroys love, destroys the very possibility of its birth.
If you can love without jealousy, if you can love without attachment, if you can love a person so much that his happiness is your happiness…. Even if he is with some other woman and he is happy, it makes you happy because you love him so much: his happiness is your happiness. You will be happy because he is happy, and you will be grateful to the woman who made the person you love, happy – you will not be jealous. Then love has come to a purity.
This love cannot create any bondage. And this love is simply the opening of the heart to all the winds, to the whole sky. It looks a little strange; but we have been taught continually that love is a relationship, so we have become accustomed to the idea that love is a relationship. But that is not true. That is the lowest kind – very polluted.
Freedom is the ultimate desire of man. Man comes to flowering only in freedom. Meditation will bring freedom.
And I am not against love; it is just one step lower than freedom, and it is beautiful to have love as a fragrance around you. Let freedom be your center and love be your circumference. Let love be the circumference and freedom the center, and you will have a total being, a whole being.
But relationship never works. You are asking me: “How can two people be committed to each other?” They cannot be. Commitment is toward existence, not toward each other. Commitment can only be toward the whole, not to each other.
“How does a relationship work?” you ask. It does not work – and you can see it everywhere. It only pretends to. People go on saying that everything is okay, everything is good. What is the point of showing one’s misery? What is the point of showing one’s wounds? One goes on hiding them. It is humiliating to show one’s wounds, so people pretend that everything is going well. They go on smiling, they go on repressing their tears.
Friedrich Nietzsche is reported to have said, “I go on smiling and laughing for the simple reason that if I don’t smile I may start crying.” Smiling is a way to cover up tears: you shift your energy from the tears to the smile so that you can forget your tears. But everybody is full of tears.
I have looked into thousands of people’s lives, their relationships. It is all misery, but they are covering it up, pretending everything is going okay. A relationship does not work, cannot work.
And you say: “I am afraid of commitment, so I avoid relationships.” You are perfectly right in being afraid of commitment and you are perfectly right in avoiding relationships, but don’t avoid relatedness. Don’t make any exclusive relationship, be friendly. Let love rise to the level of friendliness, let it be just your quality. Be loving. Don’t make it a relationship, just be loving.
These are the three stages. Relationship is the lowest, it is animal. Love as a quality of your being. Just as you breathe, let love be, that is human. And love at its ultimate expression is not even a quality, you become love itself. Then it is not even like breathing, it is your very being; then it is spiritual. But the third possibility can happen only through meditation. That refinement is possible only if your energies go through the whole alchemy of meditativeness.
Unless you are enlightened, extra-marital relationships are good. So please have as many as you can have before you become enlightened, because once you are enlightened I cannot help! Then you are finished.
Once in a while just a little taste of a new woman, a new man revives your interest in the old woman and the old man. You start thinking, “After all, she is not so bad.” A little change is always good.
I am not against extra-marital relationships. The people who are against them are really teaching you possessiveness in an indirect way. When I say I am not against extra-marital relationships I am teaching you non-possessiveness. Just see the point: if I talk about non-possessiveness people think, “That’s spiritual, that’s religious – that’s great!” But if I talk about extramarital relationships, the spiritual and the religious are immediately offended.
But I am saying the same thing. Talking about non-possessiveness is abstract, talking about extra-marital relationship is concrete. And you cannot live with abstractions, you have to live with concrete life. And what wrong can it do? If a man is tired of the same woman – the same contours, the same geography, the same topography – once in a while a little bit different geography, a little bit different landscape…and he comes home again interested in exploring the old map. It gives a break – a coffee break. And after each coffee break you can again get involved in the same work, the same files, and you open them and you start working…. The coffee break helps you.
I don’t want people to be interested in impossible ideals. I am not an idealist at all. I am down-to-earth, a pragmatist, a realist.
If people want to live together in a deep intimacy, they should not be possessive. They should allow freedom. And that’s what extra-marital relationship is – freedom.
Relationship is beautiful because it is a mirror. But there are stupid people – they see their face in the mirror and they see it is ugly so they destroy the mirror. The logic is apparent: this mirror is making them ugly, so destroy the mirror and then they are beautiful.
Relationship is a mirror. Wherever you are related with a person – a wife, a husband, a friend, a lover, an enemy – a mirror is there. The wife mirrors the husband. You can see yourself there. And if you see an ugly husband, don’t try to leave your wife – the ugliness is in you. Drop that ugliness. The mirror is beautiful; be thankful to this mirror.
But stupid and cowardly people always escape and renounce; brave and wise people always live in relationship and use it as a mirror. Living with someone is a constant mirroring around you. Every moment the other reveals you, exposes you. The closer the relationship, the clearer is the mirror; the more distant the relationship, the less clear is the mirror.
Live, and live so totally that you come in contact with yourself. And there is no other way to come in contact with yourself. The deeper you live, the deeper you know yourself, in relationship, in aloneness. The deeper you move in relationship, in love, the deeper you know. Love becomes a mirror. And one who has never loved cannot be alone, he can at the most be lonely.
One who has loved and known a relationship can be alone. Now his aloneness has a totally different quality to it, it is not loneliness. He has lived in a relationship, fulfilled his love, known the other, and known himself through the other. Now he can know himself directly, now the mirror is not needed. Just think of someone who has never come across a mirror. Can he close his eyes and see his face? Impossible. He cannot even imagine his face, he cannot meditate on it. But a man who has come to a mirror, looked into it, known his face through it, can close his eyes and see the face inside. That’s what happens in relationship. When a person moves into a relationship, the relationship mirrors, reflects him, and he comes to know many things in himself that he never knew existed.
Through the other he comes to know his anger, his greed, his jealousy, his possessiveness, his compassion, his love, and thousands of moods of his being. Many climates he encounters through the other. By and by a moment comes when he can now be alone; he can close his eyes and know his own consciousness directly. That’s why I say that for people who have never loved meditation is very, very difficult.
Those who have loved deeply can become deep meditators; those who have loved in a relationship are now in a position to be by themselves. Now they have become mature, now the other is not needed. If the other is there they can share, but the need has disappeared; now there is no dependence.