Connect, and you will be rid of undercurrents—is an age-old belief, as ancient as the hills and the rivers.

So, if you experience rising jealousy and envy about someone, and if you seek to rid yourself of the discomfort it causes, then make it a point to befriend that person, find out more about him or her, and make that attempt to forge a connection. You will soon see your envy vaporise.

If you experience visceral hatred for someone—unwavering in its intensity—and if you genuinely want to get rid of it, then set aside that hatred for a while; just keep it aside (don’t forget it, because you can’t shove it under the carpet) for some time, and make it a point to befriend, normalise relationship, and connect with that person. In a matter of time, you will be questioning your hatred, and seriously doubting your visceral sense itself.

Living with people is a constant huge risk. Either you deliberately cultivate a thick skin, or you make an effort to connect. If you don’t connect, you shall be swamped by so many undercurrents that you wouldn’t know what to make of it; you will begin seeking a life of isolation and court people-free spaces.

Connection works, and works well, only if you trust it to work. Else, your biological relationship with your sister or brother can turn into an obligation, a mental burden, and you shall frequently find yourself in situations where you can’t take that decision, which can liberate the scene of every vicious undercurrent. In such circumstances, you will merely join the others in an enveloping quicksand!

Let me caution you on some of your assumptions. If you admire and respect someone, it merely means that the other has evoked such regard within you. That doesn’t automatically imply a connection. Similarly, if you like someone, or are affected in some manner, it doesn’t mean connection _per se_. It only means that you are affected. You could be fond of that person, or you may be aroused by him or her.

We don’t seem to realise that most of the emotions, sensations, arousals, interests and likes we experience towards something or someone are merely some happenings within us. That is it. A monologue! Not relationship! If I admire Sir MV, it doesn’t mean that I have found a relationship with him. Relationship, by its very definition, means a two-way street. Suppose I like you, and you also like me, can that be termed a relationship? I liked you because you were thin and lithesome, and you liked me because of my voice, let us say. As we both age, my like is very likely to fall off because you are growing fatter, while your like may still be sustainable. So, what happens? Can that be called a relationship?

Simply put, connection is that which helps you connect with the other, and hence dissolves all possible undercurrents within you, and their further perversions of jealousy, envy, hatred, blaring irritation, etc.

Same with a subject. Connect with it, and you will find some access, and then it no longer is hard, difficult, insurmountable, or starry. It appears near, and something closer to what is known, and knowable too. Same with work, or the scale of work. Learn to connect with it, live with its intricacies, make an effort to grapple with its unique threads, and you won’t ever be put off by any sort of work or scale ever. You will find ways to connect.

So, when you connect, you can do wonders. When you don’t, you can be lost in your own world. And, your private world that knows not how to connect, can turn into a fiefdom of vanity, perversion, and vice. Even if you banished yourself into such a world, you would still need a connection to liberate you out of such a hell.

So, connect actively. Everyday. Every time.

Remember, connecting doesn’t bring about a natural relationship or find love for you. A true relationship, rare as it is in this world, is truly a gift from the Gods. So is love.

You can’t aim to own a relationship; such a thought itself is foolish. You can, at best, attempt to connect.

Await the gifts of relationship and love to emerge.

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Sudheendra Chaitanya

Sudheendra Chaitanya is a Hindu monk based in Bangalore, India. After completing Engineering, he studied the scriptures at Chinmaya Mission in 1991, and continued with Mission work until 2005.

He now chooses to spend time with himself, observing life—people and happenings—keenly, and his insights flow out as writings. As a serious investigator into the core issues of life, Sudheendraji connects to people and subjects of life alike…with intimate directness. He has also authored several books. Notable among them are Blooming in the Open, The How, What and Why of I and God and Personal Worship. In a lucid narrative, his writings deliver fundamental insights, ruthlessly searing through conditioned thoughts and beliefs, but nourishing the soul with care.

Sometimes nourishing, sometimes revealing…