How to love de Thich Nhat Hanh


True love includes a feeling of deep joy that we are alive. If we don´t feel this way when we feel love, the it´s not true love.


Often, we get crushes on others not because we truly love and understand them, but to distract ourselves from our suffering. When we learn to love and understand ourselves and have true compassion for ourselves, then we can truly love and understand another person.


We tend to wonder if we have enough to offer in a relationship. We´re thirsty for truth, goodness, compassion, spiritual beauty, so we go looking outside. (…) A true partner or friend is one who encourages you to look deep inside yourself for the beauty and love you´ve been seeking.


Sometimes we feel empty, we feel a vacuum, a great lack of something. We don´t know the cause; it´s very vague, but that feeling of being empty inside is very strong. We expect and hope for something much better so we´ll feel less alone, less empty. The desire to understand ourselves and to understand life is a deep thirst. There´s also the deep thirst to be loved and to love. We are ready to love and be loved. It´s very natural. But because we feel empty, we try to find an object of our love. Sometimes we haven´t had the time to understand ourselves, yet we´ve already found the object of our love. When we realize that all our hopes and expectations of course can´t be fulfilled by that person, we continue to feel empty.


To love is to offer the other person joy and a balm for their suffering.


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