Looking for Love: What is Love?

LOVE

Love is an amazing thing. The thought of it, the pursuit of it, the hope of it, consumes so much of our consciousness. But for some reason, it’s hard to say exactly what love is. How do you know when you have it? How do you know when you are giving it?

Here’s one definition for you:

“Love is wanting the best for someone else. Even to the point of self sacrifice.”

I think this definition gets to the heart (ha!) of what makes love so special. As an emotion, love is unique. All other emotions (fear, lust, happiness, anger, etc.) are focused on ourselves. And the more intense these emotions are, the more we focus inward. But love overrides our most basic instincts and causes us to focus on others. Ask any parent who has stayed up all night with a sick child when they really just wanted to go to sleep. Or a man who spends a couple of paychecks on an engagement ring. Or a soldier who risks their life for their country. Love can turn your world upside down.

Because love is so unique and so contrary to our other emotions, it can seem as if love is harder to come by than it actually is. It is easy to forget the love that we feel for others or the love that is felt toward us when we experience or see the selfish emotions more often than the selfless one.

Many years ago, I had a revelation about myself that shocked me. Despite all the love I had received from my family and friends, I somehow had allowed my heart to grow so cold I didn’t feel like I loved anyone, including myself. Especially myself.

But something happened to me that not only brought the love back, it set me on a path that I have been trying to follow ever since.

I’m going to spend some time on this site talking about love and my continuing journey to understand it, embrace it, and share it.

Right about now you might be asking yourself the following questions: “What’s the point?” “What is the ultimate purpose of this?” Well for me, it means reaching the highest level of maturity and putting myself in a position to be of the most benefit to humanity. How will I know that I have reached that goal? When my first response to another human being is love, regardless of who they are, what they look like, what they believe, or what they have done.

Looking at it from that perspective, I can tell that I have a long way to go. I want you to come along with me so we can figure this out together. For now, I hope you will take this statement at face value until you know it for yourself:

If you think you are alone in this world, if you feel like everyone around you is in it for themselves; just look up and know that you are loved.

Peace,

Charles

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