Eknath Easwaran's Commentary
Millions of people today suffer from loneliness. Here Saint Francis is saying, “I know the cause of the malady and I know the secret of its complete cure.” No matter what the relationship may be, when you look on another person as someone who can give you love, you are really faking love. That is the simplest word for it. If you are interested in making love, in making it grow without end, try looking on that person as someone you can give your love to – someone to whom you can go on giving always.
Learning to love is like swimming against the current of a powerful river; most of our past conditioning is pushing us in the other direction. So it is a question of developing your muscles: the more you use them, the stronger they get. When you put the other person’s welfare foremost every day, no matter how strong the opposing tide inside, you discover after a while that you can love a little more today than you did yesterday. Tomorrow you will be able to love a little more.