Relationship is the mirror in which we see ourselves as we are. All life is a movement in relationship. There is no living thing on the earth which is not related to something or the other. Even the hermit who abandons the world and goes off into some lonely spot is related to the past, related to those who are around him. There is no escape from relationship. In that relationship, which is the mirror in which we can see ourselves, we can discover what we are: our reactions, our prejudices, our fears, depressions, anxieties, loneliness, sorrow, pain and grief. We can also discover whether we love or whether there is in us no such thing as love. So we must together examine this question of relationship because that is the basis of life. That is the only thing we have. If we cannot find right relationship, if we live our own particular narrow life apart from wife, husband, and so on, that isolated existence brings about its own destruction. So relationship is the most extraordinarily important thing in life. If we do not understand that relationship, we cannot possibly create a new society.
So relationship is important. And we are going to inquire very closely into what is relationship, why human beings throughout their long existence have never had a relationship in which there is no oppression, possessiveness, attachment, contradiction, and so on. Why is there always this division, as man and woman, we and they. We are going to examine it together. This examination can be intellectual or merely verbal, which is intellectual concept of what relationship is, trying to understand intellectually what that relationship is. But such intellectual comprehension has no value at all. It’s just an idea, just a concept. But if you can look at our relationship as a whole, then perhaps we can see the depth and the beauty and the quality of relationship. So we are asking, what actually is our present relationship with each other-not the theoretical, romantic, idealistic relationship, which is all unreal, but the actual, daily relationship with each other? Are we related at all? Our relationship is either possessiveness, attachment, various forms of intrusions upon each other. And if we examine it, one factor in that relationship is attachment.
What is attachment? Why do we have such a tremendous need for attachment? We are attached either to a person or to a belief or to some form of conclusion. What are the implications of attachment? Why is one attached? When you are attached to anything, there is always fear in it, fear of losing it. There is always a sense of uncertainty. Please observe it for yourself. There is always a sense of separation. I am attached to my wife. I am attached to her because she is my companion. I don’t have to tell you all this; you know all this without my telling you. I am attached to her, which means I am jealous, frightened. The consequences of attachment are the fear of losing, jealousy, anxiety. Where there is jealousy, there is hatred. And is attachment love? That is one factor in our relationship.
This article has been written by by Jiddu Krishnamurti.