Let’s not get into a heavy discourse on the essence of love, but rather, our need for it during a growing elusiveness.
Concepts of being in love, loving, being loved, and the like, tend to be relative rather than universal, though we should all know the electricity and wonder that spread through the soul when we fall in love with each other as human beings. Such romance is meritorious.
Over the years, and perhaps eons past, as humans we have also felt affection for other living objects in our world, i.e., pets and even plants. Jonah of swallowed whale fame was said to have tendered emotion toward the latter at one specific time while depressed. This affection for the living is a pleasant thing, and we know it differs from what we have toward one another as people. Of course, Jonah’s plant died. Actually, it only lived overnight….
Is it me, or does love appear to be waxing cold in our world? I’m pretty sure this is happening. Remember the old campfire song: They’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love, yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love. Well that tune seems to have gone the way of the Republican candidates for POTUS for now. Buh bye. Will Mormon Romney love us? Not more than a three dollar bill.
This may be an okay test: separate yourself emotionally in your mind from your other half and any corresponding children, and what do you have? This is something I cannot do as I have no partner or family in this life. But my guess is you come up as empty as I do. Maybe, just maybe, you have a few friends and family left who care.
You know they care because what they feel for you translates into action in this life, not an emotional surge at a given moment, but interaction that holds you in inestimable value in their eyes. It is most likely unconditional, though it may — and should — also be mutual.
So what do we feel for things? Do we act on their behalf, perhaps keep them clean and shiny? Is that affection, or love? Or even lust? Do we love inanimate objects, do they come into being awaiting our deepest emotional response?
Really, now. Does any of us love paying for anything? I mean, does Paypal really alter our perceptions about being consumers to that degree? Where exactly do money and corporations and products and services come into the altruistic realm we wish to associate with love? Well, love is different than everything else we entertain in our existence.
Love has no room for fear. Love expects nothing in return. Love is greater than all other virtues. Yet love is not a given. This world grows more and more loveless day by day, ironically, partly due to the cold, clueless hearts of degenerate people who think love solely has something to do with protecting themselves and what is genetically or materially theirs. They love no outside world of people yet strongly desire acquisition of everything else of value in it. This can be a disturbing psychosocial phenomenon, yet what seems as scary is the push by advertising moguls to cash in on this elusive emotion.
What is love? Haddaway asked it in the 80s, as the public relations exec made his way to stardom on the pop music charts. He added, baby, don’t hurt me. So, there may be pain in romantic love. Coltrane played to A Love Supreme. And love is the underlying theme behind countless romantic songs and films. It is a given in media.
As the world grows more philosophically distanced in the digital village, while at the same time increasingly, technologically smaller, we should address the love factor in our lives. If for no other reason than to know that if we give so much in its sake, often without even knowing what it is, and if millions of advertising dollars have been adopted with the notion in order to persuade us to shift our affections onto their products and services, then there’s something there of undying value.
What is love? It’s not what we think it is, it’s not what we’re told it is, and it’s not what we live for. Let’s not kid ourselves. As the song goes, I don’t want to live in a world without love.
None of us does.
Love is what we are willing to die for. Everything else is interesting, and even satisfying, but it isn’t love. We can know it. We should know it. We must know it. Because despite our isolation and despondency, despite our dissatisfied experience, despite our broken dreams and desires, when love makes its way into a fearful world, that world must make room for it, not in replacement of fear, but blissfully absent of it; fear must dissipate, inherit nothingness.
What would you die for? If you didn’t rephrase that to read Whom instead of What, maybe love is passing you by as consumerism strikes at the soul demanding monetary response.
Don’t let it. We’re created to love and be loved. There’s love to be had. Real love. It isn’t often visible on your television screen and it certainly is an affectation in any cinema. But whatever earth shattering changes and adjustments you may have to go through to realize love exists, know that it is worth it, love is life’s ultimate quest and reward.
Through the din of daily living and fear of what may come, love is a steady constant calling. Calling quietly. Calling us by name. Calling your name, specifically. And waiting patiently.
Toss all caution to the wind. Discover love.