AUDIENCE: Can you have real love for other living beings?

JAGAD GURU: Yes, you can have love for other living beings. But you must understand that in order to have that love, you have to experience actual love for the Supreme Person. This is the reason Jesus Christ's two commandments were in order: "My first and foremost commandment is that you love the Supreme Father with all your heart, all your mind, all your being. And the second is like unto it, and that is to love your neighbor as yourself."

You can love your neighbor. You can love another living entity. But you have to first develop your love for the Lord. Then as your love for Him increases, your love for others will increase. If your love for the Supreme is not there, then your love for others is not going to be there either. Somebody may think that their love for others is there, but if you don't have love for the Lord, you cannot have love for others.

The Supreme Person is the root and the source of all of the living entities, and everyone is related to Him. For example, all the leaves on a tree are connected with the trunk and the roots. So if you water that tree at the root, then the water comes up and it goes to all the leaves which can be compared to all the living entities. But if you just try to water a leaf, then the tree is going to die. If the water does not get down to the root, then all those leaves are going to die. Similarly, you're not really going to love anyone simply by trying to love another individual. That's not going to work. You have to directly place your love upon the Supreme Lord. And by cultivating your love for the Supreme Person, you'll find that you actually begin to love your friends, spouse and children more. You actually begin to see them for who they really are—spirit souls, sparks of the Supreme. You actually begin to appreciate their intrinsic value or their real worth, and you really begin to love them and care for them. As you realize that all living entities are the children of the Supreme, you start to expand that love to all living beings. This is real love. And this is what's desired. Lust is not love. The more you're lusting, the less you're loving. And the more you're loving, the less you're lusting.

AUDIENCE: Thank you very much, Jagad Guru.