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Are you interested in learning “what is true love” and the difference between true love and attachment? In this article, we cover this important topic and also compare love and relationships.

What is true love?

According to Buddhism, when we talk about the topic of love, it’s essential to remember that as humans, as beings in this world, we all seek love and affection in our lives. All living beings need love to thrive. So, when discussing love, it’s a vast and broad topic. Love can be found in many ways, but the basic foundation for all forms of love is kindness and compassion. However, people often misunderstand love and attachment. When it comes to love between partners, whether male and female or among boys and girls, many don’t know what true love is and what attachment entails.

What is True Love
What is True Love?

Difference Between True Love vs Attachment

Now, there is a distinct difference between true love and attachment. So, what is the difference? Well, when someone loves another person, they will say, “I need you to be happy by being with me.” On the other hand, if someone is attached to a person, they will always say, “Why are you not making me happy?” There’s a significant difference between these two expressions. When someone loves another person, they are trying to give something to them, seeking to provide happiness.

However, if one is attached to someone and developing lustful ideas, their mindset will focus on selfish desires, expecting the other person to fulfill their happiness. True love is based on unselfishness and encompasses qualities such as love, kindness, compassion, and patience. These attributes lead to genuine love. When loving someone, it’s essential to be kind and compassionate, empathizing with their sadness. Compassion means suffering with others, understanding and sharing their pain. If you can feel empathy and share the pain of others, that is true compassion.

So, in true love, you need to have the ability to share and also possess kindness. You always need to wish for the well-being of that person; you need always to wish the good of that person. That is how you truly love. Our great teacher, the Supreme Buddha, gave a wonderful explanation for love. The Supreme Buddha said, “As a mother who loves her only child, you should spread that same love to every person in this world.” When we talk about mother’s love, parents do not expect anything from us; instead, they love us.

Now, when we were small, we often did many terrible things to our parents. Have you seen how babies do so many terrible things to their parents? They pull their hair, pinch them, cry, and yell. Yet, parents still love their children.

So, when someone truly loves someone, it’s like they’re holding them firmly and nurturing them. But if you are attached to a person, you always expect things from others. You always expect things that fulfill your desires. When someone is attached or being lustful for someone, it means they are always expecting every fulfillment and desire from that person. You’re not trying to give something; you are trying to get something from that person. It’s like holding onto something tightly.

Suppose you are holding a cow or a bull with a rope. When the animal tries to escape, holding it tightly causes pain. The more you hold it tightly, the more you are the one who gets hurt. If you can let go, you won’t get hurt anymore.

So, when you are attached to a person, you will always get hurt, and you will never fulfill your desires because desires and sensual desires are never fulfilled. We cannot find satisfaction in those things, and that is what we call attachment. In attachment, you hold onto things tightly. There’s a great quote that describes love: If you like a flower, you will pluck that flower, but if you love a flower, you will water the plant that flower belongs to.

So, if you love someone, what you have to do is say, “I need you to be happy with me. I always wish for the happiness in your life. If that happiness includes me, that is better, but if not, I still need you to be happy.” That is how you truly love, and that is the difference between true love and attachment. In true love, you don’t expect anything from the person, but still, you try to give happiness to them. In attachment, you always expect things from people, yet you will never be satisfied. So, choose to love people correctly, and you will be a peaceful person throughout your life.

Difference Between Love and Relationship

Let’s distinguish between love and relationship. Love is what occurs within you, while a relationship is something you engage in within the world. Your actions in the world are always influenced by various forces, and any transactions you make are subject to different realities. Once you’re involved in the world, things may go right or wrong due to the complexities of managing them. Contrary to common belief, relationships require a significant amount of management; without it, they can wither or fail. However, love, being an internal experience, isn’t subject to external forces.

Unfortunately, many people allow external factors to dictate their emotions. Yet, the sweetness of your emotions should be determined by you, not someone else. While you have some control over what occurs in the world, you can’t control everything, as there are numerous other factors and individuals involved.

Therefore, what happens within you should align with your desires. Love, then, is an internal phenomenon, often misconstrued as something external, like “love is in the air,” which implies a polluted environment. In reality, love is an internal state, where your emotions take on a sweet form for various reasons. You might use external stimuli, such as another person, to evoke these sweet emotions, but ultimately, love originates within yourself.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is true love according to the bible?

The Bible defines true love as selflessness, compassion, and sacrifice, as exemplified by God’s love for humans.

What is true love in a relationship?

True love in a relationship entails mutual respect, trust, communication, and a genuine concern for the other’s well-being and happiness.