All relationships come through your life, flow through your life, and flow out of your life.

  • Sometimes you are doing something good for them,
  • sometimes they have insulted you,
  • sometimes they praise you,
  • sometimes they need you, and
  • sometimes they don’t need you; they go in and they go out.

The practice of Yoga of relationships is the practice of detachment in relationships. This means to feel that all these comings and goings do not really matter, because it’s not about you personally anymore, but is about God, or something way beyond your understanding or liking and disliking.

The idea is to empty the karmic bank balance, and to pay all of these karmic relationship debts here.

Serve the Self in others

The fact is, all of these situations show up in your life and all of these people show up in your life; all of these different scenarios are nothing but your lessons (your “karmic debts”)  about relationships. The relationships with others are playing the role of mirrors to your own idea of your own Self.  In conscious relationships, you only have one attitude: “I am going to serve you because I am going to serve God in you.”

Suffering doesn’t matter, because it is selfless service. It is that one way of seeing things which will work out all relationship issues. You don’t have to go through and figure out what happens in every case. You just have to learn that there is only One Self, the Atman, appearing as many. There is no other, there is only the Self.  The only thing that you learn is that other people are your own self.  The Self is the Self and that is it.

Seeing separation

If you do not learn this, you always say this person and me, or that person and me.  You compare one relationship to another: this is a different case, this is a different case and you refer to your me all of the time. You will go through ten thousand situations and you will get upset and frightened.  You will swing between attraction and the opposite scenario of repulsion; you will get all the colors of this karmic relationship.

Once you understand what this karma of relationship is about, however, you will keep constantly remembering: There is no separate self,  there is no other, I think there is another, but there is no other.  The Self is the Self.  The moment you really understand this, you finish your karmic debts.

  • Karma Yoga is about selfless service.
  • You just serve.
  • Selfless means without any idea of what you are doing–you just serve.
  • Your only wish is to serve, and you don’t want anything out of it.
  • You understand that we cannot solve the problem on the same level of consciousness that created the problem,
  • so whatever we say about something will always be wrong–because it will always be a learning lesson.
  • Maybe you will refine your ideas about how you think about things,
  • but the best attitude is to just adopt the general attitude that the Self is the Self.
  • Then you will have peace of mind and stop comparing yourself with others.
  • There is only God, which comes in different forms and shapes.
  • I am just serving God in all and that is it.

© Swami Sitaramananda 2014 No part of this article may be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the author.