“Ultimately, of course, there is no other, and you are always meeting yourself.”
Every human being has been conditioned to think and behave in certain ways—from genetics, experiences, and environment—and we are very quick to form conclusions and opinions about each other. When we judge in this way, we are confusing others’ conditioned mind patterns with who they are (whereas their mind patterns are simply who they appear to be, not who they are). When we do this, we are giving them a false identity that becomes a prison, not only for them, but also for us.
To let go of judgement liberates us and the other person, and the ego no longer runs our relationships. Relationships based on ego and judgement tend to be based on fear and desire. What you desire from the other may be pleasure, attention, praise, recognition, or some sort of self-validation through comparison and establishing them as less than you. What you fear may be the opposite: that they are in some way more than you are.
However, being fully present—without using it as a means to an end, but as the true focal point—brings relationships into the present and beyond fear and desire to a place of pure love, and pure love does not want or fear anything. When you allow people to be who they are, they begin to change.
To know someone, you don’t need to know about them. About them are just circumstances: their past, their history, their story. “Knowing about” and “knowing” are totally different. One operates through thought, the other through stillness. Knowing about is helpful for practical purposes. However, it can become destructive as concepts create barriers, and without these barriers, love is naturally present in all human interactions.