Question: Isn't the love between mother and child often possessive?

Sri Chinmoy: At the beginning, the mother will not allow her child to be touched by ordinary human beings; only friends, relatives and dear ones are allowed to touch or fondle the child. The mother is reluctant, because she feels that the child is her possession and if they fondle or caress him, perhaps the child will lose his beauty. But what is inside her fear? It is her unillumined love for the child. If her love were absolutely illumined, she would immediately feel, "I am the mother of this child. Let others also appreciate him. He is God's creation and God has given him to me. So let other children of God also appreciate their little brother."

After four or five years, the mother takes the child to kindergarten. Again, she relies on those who have the same love for the child, but now she has a little more illumination. She allows the child to go to school and start learning. Then she allows him to go to high school and college.

For the little child of seven or eight, his whole world is his mother. Love means his mother and nobody else. A few years later, when he is playing and singing with his friends, his feeling of love expands a little. Then, when he studies at school and college, it is his state or his country that he feels love for. Then a day comes when he feels that not only does he belong to a particular country but to the whole world. And then he goes still higher and deeper until finally he feels that he is universal, and his love embraces everything in God's creation. He starts by loving his own physical mother. Then gradually he expands his love to the universal Mother, who embodies the entire creation.