text © Jonathan Zap
M. Scott Peck has an interesting definition of love — “I define love thus: The will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth.”
Someone once said that, “Love is cool, it is not hot.” It is crucial to distinguish love from passion, infatuation, codependence and sentimentality. It is also said that love is a verb, not a noun. What you love is what you spend time on.
Sometime in the Nineties an eighty-year-old woman, who was a Jungian analyst, gave a talk I attended in Boulder. At the end of her talk there were questions from the audience and the first one came from a young woman. “Now that you are an elder,” asked the young woman, “what you can tell me as a young woman about a love?” The elder woman replied, “When I was your age I was desperately trying to be loved. But now I know that it is better to simply be love.”
A few love quotes:
“In real love you want the other person’s good. In romantic love you want the other person.”
— Margaret Anderson
“You come to love not by finding the perfect person, but by seeing an imperfect person perfectly.”
— Sam Keen
Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being “in love” which any of us can convince ourselves we are.
Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two.” — from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernières
“Love is the beauty of the soul.”
— St. Augustine