04.35: Loving the unlovable is the characteristic of God – and the character of the godly

by April 4, 2012

Most of us know someone who annoys, irritates or enrages us. We may even feel that if only that person would be out of our life, everything would be so much better.

On this vexing issue Gita wisdom offers us a refreshing and empowering take. It informs us that the world is like a university meant to teach us lessons in love. These lessons expand our love till it reaches its full potential of loving Krishna and through him all of his creation and creatures.

Loving God is an essentially transformative process that requires us to become godly, to learn to love like God loves. An essential characteristic of Krishna is that he loves even those who are unlovable, as is evident in an example that is uncomfortably nearby: we ourselves.

Krishna offered us his love even when we were unlovable, at a time when we had sold our souls to selfish indulgences. Leave alone the past, even at present, if we look within, we will probably find much there that is unlovable for Krishna. Yet he looks beyond these unlovable accretions to our real self, our pure soul, and encourages and facilitates us in getting rid of those accretions.

The Bhagavad-gita (4.35) indicates that the fruit of wisdom is this vision of love, this ability to see, as Krishna sees, the lovable divine spark within everyone. Even the unwise can love the lovable; it takes the wise to love the unlovable, to see beyond their unlovable periphery to their lovable core and to help them act according to their core, not their periphery.

The presence of the unlovable in our lives is an opportunity to grow in our character. They force us to do what we actually want to do: become godly and thereby come closer to God.

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