We often hear it said that relationships require work. And maybe they do. And maybe the worst relationships require the most work. But love is not work. Not at all. Love is easy.
Most of what we do—maintaining a home, raising a family, holding a job—is relatively worthwhile and culturally approved. Trouble is, everything relative involves pain, death and disappointment. We seek compensation for this through the ardent pursuit of pleasant experiences. But pleasant experiences are essentially meaningless, and eventually we find ourselves in a state of disenchantment. We wonder: What is infinitely worthwhile? Absolutely worthwhile? And we are abruptly aware that the vaunted mind cannot help us.
Do I need what I want? No. What I need, I already have. Getting what I want requires the expenditure of effort. What is acquired through effort will require more effort to protect and maintain. That is what all effort leads to—more effort.
There are two kinds of work: necessary and unnecessary. Can I refrain from unnecessary work? Refrain comes from the Latin word for bridle. Can I refrain from unnecessary speech? It’s not so easy.
The apple is not ripened by trying. Neither are we. “Act without doing; work without effort.”