Love heals all wounds. Where there is love there IS a way. No matter what the question, love is the answer. Love makes the world go ’round. Love is the greatest gift we can give and receive. And love, as we know it and practice it, is an illusion, a figment of our own imagination. As such, it is easily knocked off course, diminished and even destroyed.
When we speak about love, we think that everyone agrees with our point of view. We don’t even realize that we have our own unique perspective, concept and belief about what love is and what love is not. Love can be defined in many different ways. It can be used as:
- an adjective: She is a “love child”
- a verb: Learn “to love” one another”
- a noun: “Love” conquers all.
Without further explanation, we cannot possibly know what another person means – and what actions they will naturally take – when they say “I love you.”
There are many different types of love, but in the English language we have only one word – LOVE Other languages have several different specific types of love built into their vocabulary. For example, the Greek language uses such words as “storge” to describe kinship and familiarity, “philia” to mean platonic friendship, “eros” to define a passionate, romantic desire, and “agape” to express a quality of selfless devotion. The French, Spanish and Italian languages use separate words to say “you” depending upon whether it is a stranger or non-familiar relationship or if it is someone you know personally or in an intimate way.
We can define love by the preferred type of activity engaged in as an expression of love. In the book The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman, the author defines love according to an individual person’s natural and desired actions that accompany the feeling of love. One person may express and feel love by praising another and only feels loved when receiving compliments. Another person expresses love and feels loved through kind and caring actions taken. Someone else defines love by the quality of physical gifts given and received while another person cares more about the quality and quantity of physical and sexual contact. And yet another person may love and feel loved when sharing quality time with a partner. When these love styles or “love languages” do not match, as they often don’t, each person may feel unloved and less inclined to give and share love.
Love can also be defined by the effect upon the other of each partner’s personality style. In relationships, it is common to find that one partner needs closeness and the other prefers distance, one is spontaneous and the other likes to plan, one spends money freely and the other is more thrifty, one thrives on taking risks and the other needs security and safety, or one is neat, organized and always on time while the other is sloppy, careless, and often procrastinates and is late for appointments.
The most important definition of love is derived from a deep analysis of each partner’s early caretaker experiences and memories that have been imprinted and grooved into their brains. In the course of ordinary life, each person may function quite well and develop a sense of him or her self as being a certain way. Then the love bug strikes and they become intimate with another person. Wham! Whoever they thought they were may go right out the window. A sweet, unassuming, and seemingly gentle woman may become a raging terror when her unmet needs are exposed by the one she loves. A strong, dominating and macho man may become needy, insecure and even sexually impotent in the privacy of his intimate relationship.
Love brings up anything unlike itself for the purpose of release and healing. My doctoral dissertation was based upon Dr. Margaret Mahler’s theory of mother-infant bonding and the lifetime effects of an inadequate and less than optimal bonding experience. The repercussions continue throughout life, repeating in every intimate relationship. We tend to choose another person whose unmet needs somehow match our own but in a different and complementary way. For example, if a man was put on a pedestal by his parents, always told he is great but rarely given the freedom to stumble and fall and learn on his own, he may connect with a woman who was always criticized and told she is inadequate but was given lots of room to explore. The task of the love union may be for her to bring him down off his pedestal and gain confidence in herself by so doing. At the same time, as he stops feeling he has to prove how great he is, he can begin to explore new ways of being in his relationship and then out in the world.
Love is most often treated as a verb, something you do or expect the other person to do. Most of us operate in the doing – we may give what we think we “should” give and do the “right” thing. The danger here is when we expect the other person to act in the same way and when they do not behave according to our expectations, we become angry, hurt, resentful, needy and basically “unloving.”
I believe that one of our major life tasks is to develop the capacity to “love everyone,
including, especially yourself.” These were the wise words told to me many years ago by my teacher and guide, Ken Keyes Jr, author of The Handbook to Higher Consciousness.
The journey to creating long lasting, love-filled, romantic and passionate relationships begins at home, within your own self. Discover who YOU are, what you want and need for yourself,.from and with others. Learn what your true purpose is here on earth. Be Who You Are – The Greatest Gift of All. Give to yourself and all who know you The Gift of Love. And then you are ready to dance The Delicate Dance of LoveThe with others.
Are YOU Ready to Heal Through Love? What does love mean to YOU? Please share in the comments below.
Learn about my Complete Relationship Healing System to help you become the love of your dreams.
Remember – Where there is love, there IS a way.