Love is a central fact of human life, both a feeling and an action. Love puts a priority on the well-being of another. Love can include romantic love, the love of family members and close friends, or a more universal love. Love involves a deep affection and caring, often out of kinship ties or modeled on kinship ties (thus “love of humanity” is about feeling all of humanity as part of your family). Love can be passionate and intense or tranquil and peaceful.
What have famous writers and thinkers offered us, as reflections on love?
If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together… there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we’re apart…I’ll always be with you.
Humanity is not without answers or solutions regarding how to liberate itself from scenarios that invariably end with mass exterminations. Tools such as compassion, trust, empathy, love, and ethical discernment are already in our possession. The next sensible step would be to use them.
Raghead (The Sonnet)
Some call me raghead,
Some call me desert dweller.
Some call me curry-breath,
Some call me f-ing nigger.
This is not just my story,
But of every person of color.
In a world stolen by whites,
Anything non-white is inferior.
Upon receiving so much hate,
I admit, sometimes I do feel gloomy.
I know how it is to be cussed everyday,
So I choose love no matter the agony.
The tradition of hate has gone on long enough.
I choose to be the break in habit on the world’s behalf.
A religious man is a person who holds God and man in one thought at one time, at all times, who suffers harm done to others, whose greatest passion is compassion, whose greatest strength is love and defiance of despair.
When you learn to say yes to yourself, you will be able to say no to others, with love.
So then, the relationship of self to other is the complete realization that loving yourself is impossible without loving everything defined as other than yourself.
In the midst of hate, I found there was, within me, an invincible love.
In the midst of tears, I found there was, within me, an invincible smile.
In the midst of chaos, I found there was, within me, an invincible calm.
I realized, through it all, that ….
In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.
And that makes me happy.
For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.
However rare true love may be, it is less so than true friendship.
Thought cannot avoid the ethical or reverence and love for all life. It will abandon the old confined systems of ethics and be forced to recognize the ethics that knows no bounds. But on the other hand, those who believe in love for all creation must realize clearly the difficulties involved in the problem of a boundless ethic and must be resolved not to veil from [humankind] the conflicts which this ethic will involve [us], but allow [us] really to experience them. To think out in every implication the ethic of love for all creation — this is the difficult task which confronts our age.
Learn to live well, or fairly make your will;
You’ve play’d, and lov’d, and ate, and drank your fill;
Walk sober off, before a sprightlier age
Comes titt’ring on, and shoves you from the stage.
Love the offender, yet detest the offense.
Love, free as air, at sight of human ties,
Spreads his light wings, and in a moment flies.
We only regard those unions as real examples of love and real marriages in which a fixed and unalterable decision has been taken. If men or women contemplate an escape, they do not collect all their powers for the task. In none of the serious and important tasks of life do we arrange such a “getaway.” We cannot love and be limited.
If I had a flower for every time I thought of you, I would walk in a garden forever.
I hold it true, whate’er befall;
I feel it, when I sorrow most;
‘Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all.
’Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all.
Anger is not a sustainable emotion in and of itself. It has to be transformed into a deep love for the possibility of who we can be.
To love for the sake of being loved is human, but to love for the sake of loving is angelic.
In every crisis, doubt or confusion, take the higher path — the path of compassion, courage, understanding and love.
All intimacy is rare — that’s what makes it precious. And it involves the revelation of one’s self and the loving gaze upon another’s true self (no makeup, no fancy car, no defensive charm, no seduction) — that’s what makes it so damn hard. Intimacy requires honesty and kindness in almost equal measure (a little more kindness, I think), trust and trustworthiness, forgiveness and the capacity to be forgiven . . . It’s more than worth it — just don’t let them tell you it’s bilss.
Celebrate who you are in your deepest heart. Love yourself and the world will love you.
Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back: a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.
Everything with me is either worship and passion or pity and understanding. I hate rarely, though when I hate, I hate murderously.
The power of love itself weakens and gradually becomes lost with age, like all the other energies of man.
When you love someone, you do not love them all the time, in exactly the same way, from moment to moment. It is impossible. It is even a lie to pretend to. And yet, this is exactly what most of us demand.
If we listened to our intellect, we’d never have a love affair. We’d never have a friendship. We’d never go into business, because we’d be too cynical. Well, that’s nonsense. You’ve got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down.
When you hurt people, they begin to love you less. That’s what careless words do. They make people love you a little less.
It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win.
We must love each other and support each other.
We have nothing to lose but our chains.
Once we recognize what it is we are feeling, once we recognize we can feel deeply, love deeply, can feel joy, then we will demand that all parts of our lives produce that kind of joy.
Each time you love, love as deeply as if it were forever / Only, nothing is eternal.
The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman is seen in her eyes because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides.
Since love grows within you, so beauty grows. For love is the beauty of the soul.
Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver.
The moment we choose to love we begin to move against domination, against oppression. The moment we choose to love we begin to move towards freedom, to act in ways that liberate ourselves and others. That action is the testimony of love as the practice of freedom.
Knowing how to be solitary is central to the art of loving. When we can be alone, we can be with others without using them as a means of escape.
How different things might be if, rather than saying “I think I’m in love,” we were saying “I’ve connected with someone in a way that makes me think I’m on the way to knowing love.” Or if instead of saying “I am in love” we say “I am loving” or “I will love.” Our patterns around romantic love are unlikely to change if we do not change our language.
Giving generously in romantic relationships, and in all other bonds, means recognizing when the other person needs our attention. Attention is an important resource.
To truly love we must learn to mix various ingredients — care, affection, recognition, respect, commitment, and trust, as well as honest and open communication.
The power of patriarchy has been to make maleness feared and to make men feel that it is better to be feared that to be loved. Whether they can confess this or not, men know that just is not true.
All too often women believe it is a sign of commitment, an expression of love, to endure unkindness or cruelty, to forgive and forget. In actuality, when we love rightly we know that the healthy, loving response to cruelty and abuse is putting ourselves out of harm’s way.
Love is a combination of six ingredients: care, commitment, knowledge, responsibility, respect and trust.
As you go about your life, you can ask: the action I’m taking, does it have these six ingredients?
But kindness does not = justice.
But calling for civility is not the humane response to injustice.
Love is essential.
But love is not a passive, weeping bystander.
Love puts in the work.
A sense of duty is useful in work, but offensive in personal relations. People wish to be liked, not be endured with patient resignation.
Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking.
It is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
This is my beloved and this is my friend.
For everything there is a season,
And a time for every matter under heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die;
A time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
A time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to seek, and a time to lose;
A time to keep, and a time to throw away;
A time to tear, and a time to sew;
A time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate,
A time for war, and a time for peace.
If I ever loved a man better than I love my art, I should marry him and leave the stage. But I have never met such a man.
One love, one heart, one destiny.
Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.
Why love if losing hurts so much? We love to know that we are not alone.