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Love and Marriage Article of the Week

What Is Love?

by Dr. Charles D. Schmitz and Dr. Elizabeth A. Schmitz

What is love?  Let us count the ways.

There is platonic love, erotic love, family love, puppy love, romantic love, unrequited love, sexual love, virtuous love, and just plain love!  Love comes in many forms and varieties.  But one thing is certain – people in love know love, feel love, experience love, and practice love.

But what is this thing called love?  Through time immemorial people have been trying to define love, understand love, feel love, and practice love.  Yet, in the end, most would agree that love is something you feel – you feel in your heart and in your emotions.  You can’t define it.  You can only experience it.

Throughout time, man and women have wondered about love, wrote about love, talked about love, and experienced love.  Many have said the obvious – “I can’t define love but I know it when I feel it!”

One thing is certain – those who try to define love as something scientific miss the essential points about love.  Love is not chemical, psychological, religious, or physiological.  It is all of these!  But in the end, love is something you feel.  It is something you feel first in your heart and then in your head.  Love is compassionate, arousing, uplifting, and it is truly human.

Throughout the millennia, much has been written about love.  Paul Frances Webster wrote one of our favorite poems about love and it goes like this:

Love is a many splendored thing
It's the April rose that only grows in the early spring
Love is nature's way of giving a reason to be living
The golden crown that makes a man a king

Once on a high and windy hill
In the morning mist two lovers kissed and the world stood still
Then your fingers touched my silent heart and taught it how to sing
Yes, true love's a many splendored thing

Beautiful, huh?  And the poem (later a popular song) illustrates the simplicity of love.  Love is something you feel.  You can’t describe it in ways that gives it justice.  You can wax on eloquently about its meaning but in the end it is almost indescribable.  But without a doubt, love is a many spendored thing.

The truth about love is the following – true love, real love, and unrequited love cannot be defined.  True love can only be felt. 

True love is an emotion.  True love is a feeling you have for another human being that is different from the love you have ever felt for another human being. 

In the end, to understand true love you must go with your heart.  Don’t make love so complicated.  Don’t make love indefinable.  In the end, understand love by how you feel – how you feel in your heart.

In the end, love matters.  Go with the flow.  Love someone for life.  Love someone deeply.  Love someone intimately.  Love someone for you, and for them.  There is nothing like it.

Love well!

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