August 23, 2016
“Sanskrit has 96 words for love; ancient Persian has 80, Greek three, and English only one. This is indicative of the poverty of awareness or emphasis that we give to that tremendously important realm of feeling.” – Robert Johnson, “The Fisher King and the Handless Maiden”
Love isn’t enough. You might disagree with me and believe that love conquers all or whatever, and that’s your prerogative. At the end of the day, you have to do what makes the most sense for you, your worldview, lifestyle, and how they all impact the relationships that you think are important. I feel differently about it though. I have been in love. I believe in love. I have learned many things about love. I don’t pretend to be some expert so these are all just my opinions.
Love is not just some set of fickle feelings you fall in and out of based on your mood or bad experiences with someone. Contrarily, it shouldn’t be solely based on some purely logical train of thought either as our rational, calculating minds do, and often, lead us astray. I also do not subscribe to the belief that love is based on some predetermined, innate, and cosmic force of fate or destiny that is out of one’s control.
Love is a wonderful, beautiful, dynamic, and powerful thing. It’s a verb based on a series of conscious decisions, choices, and actions that flow into a pattern of behavior that defines our worldview, outlook, and character. It requires work, thoughtfulness, commitment, dedication, resilience, tenaciousness, forgiveness, grace, hope, and mercy.
Love is confusing. We all mean so many different things when we speak about love and while we all kind of know what the other is referring to, it’s still hard to ever know if we’re all on the same page.
In Greek, there are 8 words for love compared to our one in English. There’s eros, ludus, philia, storge, pragma, mania, agape, philautia (both its positive and negative forms). Starting this week, I’ll be writing about all of these different definitions and expressions of love based on how the ancient Greeks conceptualized them.
I’m sure I’ll disagree with some of you, but hey, these are just my #UnpopularOpinions.
Next Week: Eros