For example, a guy may be loving a woman. He's giving her his heart, his entire being and she's taking it— spinning it around in circles, jumping up and down on it with her high heels. And this guy's sitting there with a pierced heart—a spiked heel driven right through it.

We're very much afraid of surrendering. In love, when we surrender, we're completely vulnerable. We're completely open to being hurt in so many ways and from so many different angles. Even the fear of loneliness is connected to the fear of loving. The same people who are afraid of being lonely are also afraid of loving. So even when they struggle in this world to try to love, they end up misplacing it. If they try to open themselves up, they're very much afraid of doing so. Therefore, on one hand they are afraid of being lonely and on the other hand, they're afraid of loving.

AUDIENCE: Is it natural for us to be vulnerable?

JAGAD GURU: Yes. We are naturally afraid because we are very tender spirit souls. To cite an analogy, we're like the hermit crab that's all vulnerable and his skin is soft and tender. He's got no protection.

As soon as we love, then we are vulnerable. We're not protecting ourselves any more. So this vulnerability is something that is dangerous and yet it is our natural state. It is our natural condition to be completely vulnerable and surrendered like that. In other words, this condition of vulnerability existing in the state of love is the natural condition for the soul.

AUDIENCE: How do we deal with our vulnerability and not get hurt?

JAGAD GURU: We guard our love very carefully. Consequently, it takes time to love. It takes time to trust. In that sense, faith is the forerunner of love. And as we develop our faith, then our hearts open up more that we are willing to expose ourselves with all of our imperfections.

In this world, we have to deal with people in a way that's very intelligent. We have to know that we are vulnerable. We can’t simply open ourselves to people who do not have our best interest in mind. We can't walk around simply opening ourselves to those who would exploit us. If we are not careful, we just end up as naive, exploited individuals.

So by nature's arrangement, we are protective. We do not reveal our hearts and minds. We do not give ourselves entirely to those who do us harm or those who do not actually love us.

Unfortunately, we also do not accept that there is someone whom we can approach and to whom we can completely give ourselves. He will not only not do us harm, but He is also our well wisher and He has the ability and power to protect us. He is the Supreme Lord, our Best Friend.

The reason we don't surrender unto the Supreme Friend is because we feel we need to protect ourselves. We feel that we need to defend our vulnerabilities and our tenderness. We know how we can be hurt. We know how we can be damaged. We know how sensitive we are. So we protect ourselves and this is natural. But we don't know that to be actually free or happy, we have to come to a point where we aren't protecting ourselves anymore.

As long as you are trying to protect yourself, what condition are your heart and mind in?