(The principal of a large school in Bombay gave us a list of frequently asked questions by 13 year old children in her school and asked us whether we can prepare answers in the light of a spiritual perspective. When we looked at the question we found that they are not mere “kid-stuff.” Most of them are either fundamental and existential questions related to world and God or psychological problems faced by most of us. This series is an attempt to answer these questions from the children’s perspective in the light of a spiritual vision of life. We don’t know how far we have succeeded in communicating to the children. Nevertheless, we hope these answer may be of some help to teachers and parents who have to deal with children. There are around thirty questions with answers given in the light of a spiritual vision of life. We will post these questions at regular intervals.)
Why is it when you want something to happen between your friend and yourself it never happens
The psychology of human relationship is complex, full of unreasonable and unpredictable reactions, riddled with hopes and fears, expectations and disappointment, attractions, repulsions and contradictions. Your thought, feelings and expectations have an impact and influence on your friend and evoke in him an inner reaction and response, but the nature of response is unpredictable. For example your eager wish or strong expectations may make your friend do what you want him to do. But sometime the inner pressure exerted on your friend by your ardent wish or expectation may produce a contrary reaction and create an inner revolt in him. Similarly there are many contradictions in us, like for example sometimes we are outwardly repelled or keep away from those for whom we feel an inner attraction. So for this problem of relationship which you have expressed in your question, there is not much use in ferreting out the causes. They are part of the fickle reactions of our lower emotional nature. They may be complex and subtle but it is a useless subtlety which doesn’t lead to any refinement or elevation of our consciousness. So instead of asking why, a more fruitful question would be how, how to resolve the problem? What is the remedy?
First of all you must understand that your friend is a unique person with his own unique thoughts and feelings. You can’t always expect him to behave in the way you want. This eager expectation that your friend has to respond according to your conceptions is a source of unnecessary anxiety and disappointment. You must giver your friend the freedom to think, feel, act and behave according to h is own unique nature, temperament, inclination. This freedom is part of true love. If you want to love your friend truly, you must give him this freedom to be what he is. There should be no inner or outer compulsion on him to think, feel or behave according to your expectations. As The Mother said to someone who is probably having a similar relationship problem, “The one you love must have the right of freedom in her feelings and if you want the truth you must understand this right and accept it.”
If you are able to understand this and accept it, you will be inwardly free from all expectation in your relationship with your friends. Not only you are free but also your friend is free from the inner pressure of your expectation. This freedom brings a deeper and greater love to your relationship.