Thursday, February 7, 2013

Love Month Series #5: Should We Give Up on Love?

I should stop posting "nonsense." That was what an irate friend told me yesterday.

Obviously in reaction to my recent posts about love, my friend emailed me links to stories of violence found on the internet saying love is "a tired word that's been overused, abused, and exploited. Try a different approach."

Stung, I was shamefully judgmental and called my friend "cynical." My friend responded saying that I should stop posting "nonsense."

There is no denying that love, though there is no scientific evidence yet and probably no need for any, is the most much-abused and recklessly used word in the English language, and probably in most others as well. Nevertheless, should we give up talking, thinking, living and promoting love?

I thought of the stories my friend sent me. Should I blog about violence without at the same time advocating something else? And what should be my context for writing about violence if not peace. But is peace possible without love?

Here are what some notable people have to say about love and peace:

  •  I believe all suffering is caused by ignorance. People inflict pain on others in the selfish pursuit of their happiness or satisfaction. Yet true happiness comes from a sense of peace and contentment, which in turn must be achieved through the cultivation of altruism, of love and compassion, and elimination of ignorance, selfishness, and greed.- Dalai Lama

  •  You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy.  But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!  In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? - Matthew 5: 43-46 Holy Bible
  • Love as thought is Truth.   Love as action is Righteous     Conduct. Love as feeling is Peace.   Love as understanding is Non-violence. Love is selflessness. Selfishness is Lovelesness. Love gives and forgives. Selfishness gets and forgets. - Sai Baba, Sathya Sai Speaks. Vol. 5. "Well or ill," Chapter 38     
  • Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that. - Martin Luther King 

Is love nonsense? Should I, who don't know any better, just keep my mouth shut about love? 

Every now and then I read the following:

- Ariel Murphy


  1. Your friend made HIS "judgement" of your writings - wide SWATH :-) Love and Compassion NEVER tire, and the words can never be overused.

    1. WIDE SWATH! I'll make that a mantra. Yep. Love is a word that can never be overused. Strange that a lot of essays, movies, songs, paintings have been made and are continuously made about love but all we seem to do is fight. That's why I decided to take advantage of "love month" and put love out there so it prevails in people's consciousness, including mine. I guess writing about it helps, though my work may really be only a mere drop in the ocean. Thank you Pete! Compassion, acceptance, love -- a wide swath. They all go hand in hand.

  2. "Dear Human: You’ve got it all wrong. You didn’t come here to master unconditional love. That is where you came from and where you’ll return. You came here to learn personal love. Universal love. Messy love. Sweaty love. Crazy love. Broken love. Whole love. Infused with divinity. Lived through the grace of stumbling. Demonstrated through the beauty of… messing up. Often. You didn’t come here to be perfect. You already are. You came here to be gorgeously human. Flawed and fabulous. And then to rise again into remembering. But unconditional love? Stop telling that story. Love, in truth, doesn’t need ANY other adjectives. It doesn’t require modifiers. It doesn’t require the condition of perfection. It only asks that you show up. And do your best. That you stay present and feel fully. That you shine and fly and laugh and cry and hurt and heal and fall and get back up and play and work and live and die as YOU. It’s enough. It’s Plenty.”

    I sincerely regret that I don't know who the author is of this essay...for all I know, Ariel, maybe YOU wrote it! Ever since I learned a few days ago that you planned to do a "Love Month Series", I wait with eager anticipation for each new posting. I come from the land of "where never is heard a discouraging word", so it's particularly jarring to me when I DO hear a discouraging word. I'm not equipped to handle it. There is NOTHING this world needs more...right now...than to ponder, focus, concentrate, meditate, contemplate LOVE.

    When I started reading your post this morning, my heart sank! How could ANYone (friend or foe) possibly call spending a month pondering love "nonsense"?!? Carry on undeterred with your "Love Series", Ariel. And I'll turn up the knob on my lOVe bOx to '11' maybe they'll be able to get the message!!

    1. "Flawed and fabulous" I couldn't agree with you more Paul. If only we can get beyond seeing each other's flaws and start appreciating what are fabulous, we have the kernel of love. It all depends on whether we look or we see. Thank you for your encouragement Paul. I was touched by your comment.

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    1. Hmmmm....don't know how in the world I could have possibly done that.