Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Love, true love.

Every single time I hear this sentence, I actually hear it spoken by one of the characters from the movie  Princess Bride, one of my husbands favorite movies. The actor speaking has a speak impediment so the words come out sounding like this, "wuv, twoo wuv." Or maybe that is just my husbands take on it.
And true to form, every single person I know has their own take on what "true love" is.

"To love is to be vulnerable.
 The only place outside of Heaven where you can be safe from the dangers of love is Hell."
-C S Lewis
Now here are some words to meditate on.

Because I am confronted with various situations on an almost daily experience, I think I can safely say that I think about love often.
Not in a romantic fashion but more in a "who is my neighbor" kind of way.
Who am I obligated to demonstrate love to?
It brings a song to my mind.  Nothing that showed up on the charts.  Just a simple song from Sesame Street.
"Who are the people in your neighborhood, in your neighborhood, in your neigh    bor    hooooood...
 They're the people that you meet when you're walking down the street.  They're the people that you meet each day."
And we come into contact with a lot of people.
Sadly, I don't always feel like loving them.

So it begs the question.  How do I "want" to love people?  Psychologists might tell me that I need to love myself first before I can love anyone else.  I think that I might have a handle on that one already after all, mankind is already pretty good at "being true to thine own self"  particularly since we are inherently selfish people.
This really seems like a step backwards into my self when love is supposed to be an "outward" deliberate action towards others.
If I go back into my past and relive some of the times that I have tried to love, recalling some bad as well as good experiences, well that could be crippling.
A bad experience has a way of reinforcing itself into your memory and then like an annoying alarm clock buzzer, it will remind you time and time again , "don't get hurt, don't be vulnerable"  Don't do it. Be strong.
In a world that puts a premium on strength over weakness. Defining what is beautiful over what is not...
well then, being vulnerable hardly seems glorious does it not? In fact, it seems downright "dangerous".

Those people that I meet when I am walking down the street.  Well, I bet they struggle with some of the same issues that I do. So that brings me back to my question.  How do we love when it seems like each individual has their own personal expectations on what love should be?
My goodness, this would take a book of enormous proportion.  A reference book for one and all.
I don't think that I could carry the weight of that around all the time.
I do know of one reference that  defines love and does it well.
Love is,
not envious
not proud
not rude
not self-seeking
not easily angered
keeps no record of wrongs
does not delight in evil but,
rejoices with the truth.
It protects
always trusts
always hopes
always perseveres.
Love never fails.
In other words, love means being vulnerable.
There you have it. An explanation in a couple of sentences, no reference book needed.
A lot easier to carry around also.

1 comment:

Tim said...

Aaahh princess bride... it never gets old