Editor’s Note: A relationship cannot blossom without love, respect and gratitude towards each other. Our member suryakala thinks there is one more. Find out what that is. 

Man is by nature a social animal as characterized by Aristotle.  We all interact with other human beings. Spiritual leaders, devotees, politicians, social workers, professionals, individuals, family members, team members, traders,consumers, children- all interact with each other and may assume different roles and with different role-plays. Even prisoners are allowed certain level of interactions except where one is considered too dangerous and considered to be kept in solitary confinement.

When a person interacts with another person or a group of persons, in a specific role, the interaction exists on certain expected frames of behaviour which are based on the defined relationships between the interacting persons.

Interaction may be in person or through media or virtual. The relationship between the members of a social network is virtual. Still the members observe the norms of the expected pattern of behaviour based on the relationship. For example the senior and junior members, the administrator and the members are all relationships expected to follow the written or unwritten norms.

There are relationships like student teacher, leader follower, Guru and the devotee, artist and the fan, family relationships like father and son, sister and brother,husband and wife, Prime Minister and the citizen, Police and the citizen, judge and the lawyer and you can name any number of relationships.

Some of these relationships are also there in other forms of animals. The most commonly found relationship is the mother and the offspring relationship in all forms of living beings.

What defines these relationships? 

Among human beings,these relationships exist on account of the existence of one or more of the four pillars of relationship. They are: Love, Respect, Gratitude and Fear.

Between two people’s relationship, it is necessary that all or at least any one of Love,Respect, Gratitude or Fear should be present.

All interactions are smooth as long as any one of these pillars of relationship defines the interaction.

In my opinion any relationship can exist only when at least one of the four pillars of relationship exists between the interacting individual(s). For example, if there is no fear or respect there can not be a proper interaction between a Police official and a citizen. If there is no respect there can not be a proper relationship between a Guru and his devotees. If there is no feeling of love ,the mother and child relationship will not exist.Many problems of neglect of parents by children arise due to the non existence of even one of the four pillars of relationship – no fear or respect (present in childhood) and no love or gratitude (expected in adulthood).

Those who can ensure that at least the presence of one of these pillars in interaction do not have problems in relationship. A teacher who commands respect, a boss who commands gratitude or fear, a husband who commands respect love and gratitude,a wife who commands love, gratitude (or fear!) do not come across problems in their relationship and interactions. 

Understanding and conscious strengthening of these pillars of relationship will go a long way in enjoying a happy life and the way in which we will be remembered later.