If our mind becomes pure, we will be able to experience the joy that exists everywhere, whether it is in trees or plants, cats or dogs, animals, people, or anything. In fact, when the mind is compassionate, even a terrorist will not create a reaction. A highly compassionate person becomes so accommodating, so large-hearted, that everybody has a place. Nothing creates a reaction of rejection. When your mind is available, you can see the goodness that is buried somewhere in every person. Sympathy or compassion comes by recognizing that every person is good by nature, and it is because of ignorance and its effects that these distortions are there in his personality. Even through all that, sat-cit-ananda सत् चित आनन्द is very much there.
To the extent that we become sensitive to that, we can experience the joy of everything. Therefore, we have to do something with ourselves to be able to experience the priyam प्रियम, the pleasing-ness, the attractiveness, the joy, the happiness, that is in every name and form.
Right now, only a few names and forms make me happy. When they satisfy my likes and dislikes, then they make me happy. If the vegetables are cooked properly, if they are soft and tender, then it is okay. If they are too hard, then it is no good. If the rice is cooked well, it is fine; if not, then I reject it. It takes no time for me to reject things because if they do not satisfy my likes and dislikes, then they do not please me. That is the condition right now. But the more that the likes and dislikes go away, the less effort things have to make in order to please me, and a day comes when no effort is required on their part, to please me.
Only that which is a source of happiness is dear to us, nothing else. If what is now a source of happiness becomes a source of unhappiness, then it is no longer dear to us. As our Swamiji says, in the beginning someone says, “I love you, I love you, I love you.” Then it becomes, “1 allow you, I allow you, I allow you -so as long as …”. In other words, our relationship with everything is utilitarian, very selfish. We have conditional love for everything else. But as our mind becomes less demanding, less needy, then the conditions we impose upon others also become less. And ideally, a day should come when we impose no conditions upon anybody.
Swami Viditatmananda Saraswati