Are You Afraid of Love?

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Are you afraid of love? 

Osho speaks about what makes people afraid.

“People are afraid of being loved because love brings misery; love brings lies. Love brings imprisonment, love brings slavery, love destroys freedom. That’s why people are afraid.

“And people cannot remain without love, because love is a necessary nourishment too. So they hanker for love, they desire to be loved and to love. They cannot remain alone. But the moment they meet the person, the other – the woman, the man – they become frightened too. They know that now they are getting into a cage.

People are afraid because love brings compromises

“People are afraid of love because love is not yet unconditional, and because love brings so many compromises. They have to compromise so much that they almost lose their original face. That’s why people are afraid. And they cannot remain without it either because it is a necessary nourishment for the soul. In fact, because it is a necessary nourishment of the soul, people have learned to exploit it. If it was not such a necessity, there would have been no exploitation; love is such a necessity that you can exploit it, you can make conditions. You can say, ‘I will love you only if you do this. I will love you only if you will love only me and nobody else, ever. And I will love you only if you accept my conditions.’

“These are the conditions and a hungry man is bound to accept the conditions. He starts lying, he starts playing games, he starts being phony. He starts doing things which he never wanted to do, and he stops doing things which he always wanted to do. And then sooner or later he thinks it is too high a price for love, it is better not to be in love, it is better to be alone.

“So people go on moving from aloneness to love, from love to aloneness. When they are alone, the hunger is felt. When they are together, the ugliness of it.

[…]

“Love brings a thousand and one lies into life. It is humiliating. One feels caged, imprisoned, compromised. One feels paralyzed, crippled. One feels chained in a thousand and one ways. That’s why people are afraid of love.

“One of my basic messages to you is never to exploit love – that will be a great religious revolution in your life. Never exploit love. If somebody loves you, don’t bring any conditions to it. If you love somebody, don’t make him a cripple. Let your love become spacious. Give more space to the person than he had when he was alone. Give him nourishment. But don’t poison his nourishment, don’t possess him. Let him be free. More free than he ever was. And then love grows into deep intimacy.

When love brings freedom love goes deepest

“When love brings freedom, love goes deepest – love makes the other feel respected not humiliated, not destroyed but enhanced. When love feels nourishing, liberating, then love goes deepest. Then love becomes prayer. It becomes the utmost, the ultimate experience of life.

“Don’t exploit love. Whenever you are in love, remember. And you will have to remember hard because for thousands of years man has exploited love, and it has become habitual.”

Osho, This Very Body the Buddha, Talk #10

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