Superficially, people say that there are a lot of people who love them (and vice versa), but if you analyze your life, you will find that there is no such thing as true love. I've realized that what we call love is essentially selfishness in disguise.

The strongest love in this world is maternal love of a mother for her children. But classical psychology will tell you that maternal love is also based on maternal instinct, which is endowed by nature to ensure survival of the race.

Coming out of that circle, love for siblings, brothers and sisters are more of social transactions - there is give and take, something in return for the so-called love which is given. If you don't have anything to give in return, they will be annoyed at best and shunt you altogether at worst.

Maybe, there used to be such a thing as true love back in the old days when Dhamma had a stronger hold, but I hardly see it in today's world. People say they love their spouse, but the search for your spouse itself begins with a selfish interest - Do they have a big house? What is the salary? Are they sexually attractive?

Coming back to the question, it doesn't take a genius to figure out that true love has vanished, then what force makes people cling to this wretched samsara knowing full well that its an exercise in futility? Even in the midst of utmost Dukkha, why doesn't the realization come that let me leave this path that causes Dukkha altogether? Is it the past Kamma which is holding its grip on you so strongly, that you are unable to come out of the while loop of samsara? Will past never let the present achieve freedom from Dukkha?

  • Our Ignorance. The main reason we're bonded to the Samsara
    – Gokul NC
    Commented Jan 2, 2016 at 15:10
  • @GokulNC Ignorance of what? You know that dukkha exists, you know that continuing on this path will lead you further into miseries, there is only knowledge, where is the ignorance? Or is it the case that we don't even know what we don't know? Commented Jan 2, 2016 at 15:13
  • Please try to post an answer instead of a comment. Generally, post a comment if you don't understand the question, if you want the OP to clarify the question.
    – ChrisW
    Commented Jan 2, 2016 at 15:49

4 Answers 4


The force that keeps one bonded to samsara is desire. Desire for continued existence.

"Even in the midst of utmost Dukkha, why doesn't the realization come that let me leave this path that causes Dukkha altogether"

Because, most likely, you only intellectually realize Dukkha and unless you are enlightened , you have the habit of wanting to continue your apparent existence.

Many words, like "ignorance" are not exact and precise translations from the original Pali words. A better meaning of ignorance (in a Buddhist context) is what one doesn't deeply understand. If one only has an intellectual understanding of things like dukkha, impermanence and not-self then one is still ignorant in the heart of those things.

People mix love and attatchment. This is just what is. It is possible to love without attatchment.

Maybe I am missing something somewhere but what does our ability to love one another have to do with what keeps us bonded to samsara?

  • 1
    i agree with Uilium whole heartedly. If you need reference for his answer, look up Buddha's first sermon. Desires are the reason for re-birth. three types of desires, for sensual pleasures, bhava tanha, vibhava tanha (from my study, Buddha did not really expalin vibhava tanha in greater details. He only mentioned it in topics. and no one ever asked him to explain, not even, Ven Ananda.) Most explaination are from later additions.
    – sargon
    Commented Jan 2, 2016 at 21:30
  • To make business with Dhamma, for example, has Bhava-tanha and/or Kama-Tanha (especially when making business with it) as reason to be bound on samsara. To delete his blog, vibhava-tanha, has the same reason, it realizes that the first is not supporting the self. No different. How ever, all of them are preaching love and actually love nothing but the self. Disguises on&on.. Real love
    – user11235
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 0:08
  • @deanalkas I suggested here that if you want to ask about vibhava tanha you could post a new question about it. Actually there are many posts on this site already which mention 'vibhava'. Or if you want to say something about it (e.g. that "Most explaination are from later additions") you might do that as a new answer to e.g. this topic,
    – ChrisW
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 0:29
  • 1
    hi Chris... thanks. i did search this site regarding vibhava tanha among other sources. I havent found Buddha's explanation of this term in any other sutta or by other great disciples (and confirmed by Buddha). Only thing we have is later additions or literal definition of the word. I am quite confident that there is no explanation of vibhava tanha that we can give credit to Buddha. For ex, in contrast with kamma tanha, there are dozens of sutta explain in detail of what they are. IMO I believe that Buddha taught us to deal with our kamma tanha as our top priority before the other 2
    – sargon
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 3:06
  • from my observation, Buddha talked dharmma regarding lower five fetters a lot more than higher five fetters.
    – sargon
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 3:59

In addition to desires as the Buddha mentioned in his first sermon, he also explained the 10 fetters saññojana). They are supportive of each other.

  • And the 'four stages of enlightenment' are associated with eradicating these various fetters.
    – ChrisW
    Commented Jan 2, 2016 at 23:15

Very good, very good, Mr. Prahlad Yeri.

King Pasenadi Kosala had a similar certain insight as well; and later on he had even a glimpse of the way out or which would be the way to justify his staying.

There are few who know real love. Look for example why people are bound to places like this. Is there real love behind? When somebody who has compassion tries to point you the way out of such place, there will be many who "love" you and fear that such would happen. Why? Because they nourish on you, so you do as well. Or what do you love? Form, sound, smell, taste, touch, ideas... what is sensed as pleasant, all of what gives that support, that is what keeps you loving.

Investigate this topic since people are willing to die for everything, but never would they like to die for virtue, concentration, insight and liberation. Beings die to become, but not for abandoning every kind of desire for becoming, out of "love". Helping others, the first step is to keep precepts without excuse, without a notion to negate it out of love for this or for that. Don't believe that such was told you out of love :-)

There are more important reasons, you should not get attached to it but investigate for yourself on a line of proper investigation you had found: investigate Tanha and its cause.

This talk is of course very useful to understand where to investigate: Seeds of Becoming

"The author points out the place where we are able to lean to understand all issues which are moving this world. A Dhammatalk on Bhava (Becoming) and how we are able to transcendent birth, aging, sickness and death, exactly here and now. "

(Note: this answer has not been given with the agreement to be means of trade or the purpose of trade and keep people traped. How you handle it lies in your sphere.)

  • You gave the same link twice. Did you mean to do that, or was the second link ("and later on he had...") meant to be a link to a different sutta featuring King Pasenadi Kosala?
    – ChrisW
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 0:39
  • Sadhu! No a mistake. Very obligingly and attentive! That is the way out by helping others, knowledge gained by the wish to give (serving).
    – user11235
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 0:45
  • Since Atma took births on internet he came across two people, who understand generosity, serving, helping and deep devotion and doing meritorious deeds. practicing dhamma in line with Dhamma, gaining Dhamma by letting go as its means, one of the is Upasaka Moritz and one of these treasures many people are gifted here. Upasaka ChrisW. Hold on such people, observe them what they do, ask them much & assist them. Of course there are also others who can maintain a kusala (wholesome) mind for certain times but are mostly limited by certain "love".
    – user11235
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 1:06
  • But back to the OP question. To go against the trade and rules, even it would be certain helpful, is actually against the precepts. Its taking what is not given, if one is honest. What will you do? Is it love that bounds you to keep doing it? Is it to difficult to take on this ascetic to stick with precepts at the fist place? How does one feel, if he needs to "kill" by serving what he loves? That goes deep, but would be just hypocrisy if you be left bedecked by excuses and not the Dhamma. Robin Hood ethic has no base in Dhamma, never forget that, since such would lead you not out.
    – user11235
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 1:19
  • And in what reference was it said "you need to work your way out by your self" and that nobody will be able to liberate you? "In the case of helping a slave to escape from slavery, if the slave follows one's order or advice to escape, one is guilty of taking; but if one simply informs the slave of good ways to reach freedom or offers food or protection along the way, one incurs no offense."
    – user11235
    Commented Jan 3, 2016 at 1:56

There are 3 main thing I gather you are asking.

Love - this is the people who you have immediately when expanding the spear of me and mine hence tremendous attachments arise. This it self gives a heap of experiences which are pleasant, unpleasant or neutral. Raising a family does have a lot of these experiences. This can be a blessing and a bondage. As bondage because you can't practice seriously at a beginner or intermediate level. For a advance meditators this can be a blessing since the diversity of experiences can keep your defilements on check which otherwise you will not realise that are there.

Past Karma - this only decides part of the experiences which are either pleasant, unpleasant or neutral. The way out of misery is to objectively observe these sensations and realized they are unsatisfactory regardless if they are Karmic results from past action or not.

Karma as a bondage - Yet again past Karma is the vehicle to study these experiences (Karmic results are in directly linked to the Karma giving rebirth) and get your mind free from creating new Karma. You past and present existence and the experiences that come with it gives you the the opportunity to study the workings of Karma by removing the roots of ignorance, greed and aversion. All this you can be experienced and dealt with within the framework of the body.

What keeps you bonded in Samsara is not being able to learn the path of liberation for some and when you get the chance not practicing seriously. In the latter it is choice or become of oneself this happens. Since having the opportunity to learn the Dhamma the ability to break free from the Fetters that tie your to misery is in your hands. Use this opportunity to break free from this bondage than having doubts about the ability to do so due to Karma. The doubt can also set you back in your practice.

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