October 19, 2010

The Philosophy of Love: An Introduction

Observe every human being you have ever come into contact with. Think of how many you have heard say, "I love you," or. "I love him/her," etc. How many times have you said these things? It has been a plague of the knowable universe (just Earth, actually) to know whether or not any given person has truly "meant" the words, "I love you." I am, therefore I think. That which can think can know, I can think, therefore I can know. Man can know, and therefore man can know when they mean the words, "I love you." So, I will take some time out of my day and apply myself to defining what these words really mean, collectively.

"And God so loved the earth that He gave His only Son..."

The Hypostatic Union is comprised of three separate entities that are defined as one and only one God. These three "persons" are the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. How do they simultaneously exist? The Father's love is manifest in the Son, and the love between the Father and Son is manifest in the Holy Spirit.

"Wait a second!" you say, "You just said 'love' two times and you still haven't defined it!"

Well, senior impatient, I'm doing that right now.

God is all powerful. God is, therefore, all good because anything besides would not be creative. Because God is all good, he is the model of "goodness." "Goodness" is substituted with "virtue," because virtue is a "good" quality (ohey, does that mean virtues are by nature creative? I mean, in a perfect form, I guess they are...).

Because God can love, this means that Creative Love (in the case of God's perfect love, I will call it "Creative Love," because it must be differentiated from what we know as "love" in our everyday use of the word) is a virtue, and that Creative Love is the perfect form of that virtue (which I will name later).

Organize material:
Love is a virtue.
Creative Love is the perfect form of Love.

Let's take a look at the opposite end of the spectrum:
Aristotle established a system of virtue, giving the two extremes of those virtues. If Creative Love is the positive extreme, then there must be a negative extreme. Creative Love is creative, therefore the opposite must be destructive (henceforth called, "Destructive Love").

Note that here is a slight disjunction. Did God's Creative Love have an object? There was no object such as a universe for him to center his Creative Love and create. Does this mean that Love in a perfect form does not have a material object? Or, would the created thing be the object of God's Creative Love? The latter statement seems the most reasonable (if worded not as an inquiry, of course).

I digressed, didn't I? If the object is the created, and that is Creative Love, then Destructive Love must be without the created object. Furthermore, Destructive Love must oppose the object of creation.

Now I shall introduce our concept of human love. Given my theoretical discussion, upon application perfect human love is centered upon creation and the opposite the destruction or opposition of creation. Humans can only take part in creation in the making of a new human (because God is the only entity that can create out of nothing). God exhibited Perfect Creative Love and that is our ultimate goal, and the vice associated is Destructive Love and anything that opposes that creation. Anything that opposes a new life, therefore, opposes God's Perfect Creative Love and because God is all good and only good comes out of him, Destructive Love (I think it is my duty to mention that the opposite of a perfect virtue is a "perfectly evil" vice, which comes from the devil, if you'd believe it) must come from a lack of Creative Love. That somehow seems irrelevant, though...

Our purpose, our goal, our destiny, etc. is to mirror God, to know, love and serve God, etc. We must mirror, strive toward, etc. God's model of Creative Love. Our nature is to strive toward Creative Love, if you'll pardon my jump in language. To not strive toward Creative Love is, therefore, against our nature (if you'll recall my other posts, anything that goes against our nature is a sin against God, because he created us with a nature/purpose/design).

Destructive Love, practically speaking, is the purest form of lust, which shall be sufficiently defined as a desire for sexual pleasure. This is because the object changes from the opposition of creation to sexual pleasure.

Lust objectifies the person of the opposite sex, which is a sin against God because it changes that person's object from knowing, loving and serving God to an object of pleasure. This is, on a moral scale, a very grave sin, because it is a direct denial against the will of God and twists the purpose of Creative Love embodied in the sexual organs.

Understand that, through all this, I have given what love does, where it comes from, its extremes and an example of one of its median vices, but I have not defined it. Why?

We cannot replicate God's Creative Love because it is perfect and we are fallen. The same goes for Satan's Destructive Love.

Lust is definable because it is a human emotion.

But is Love an emotion? Its perfection in either direction is not an emotion because it does not express feeling, but an object. It is not cognitive because it does not enact reason.

I know that Love provokes emotions; lust, desire, beautiful perception, joy, serenity, contentment...the list goes on. However, love is differentiated from these, as God's perfect example shows.

Personally, I do not believe I can effectively put "love" into words. Language is the conveyance of human thoughts, and because language derives from human thoughts, it is imperfect. To attempt to put Creative Love or any form thereof into my imperfect language would be a sin against their natures as objects of God's design. Ultimately, I know what Love is not. Love is not an emotion itself because there is always a definable, objective emotion such as "desire" or "lust" in place that we substitute with "love," which is a sin against its nature. I know that love, in order to strive for God's plan, must be creative.

This means that deduction is impossible, because I cannot form a positive statement out of anything other than two positive statements. I could produce any number of the two aforementioned, and never produce a solid definition.

Induction applicable.

Love is an explicable nonentity that occurs between two human beings that benefits the continuation of the human race.

This leads me to my ultimate point. We cannot express God, His perfect intentions and motives, with our language. To do so is a horrible sin because it lowers God to a flawed, human level. With the exception of Jesus Christ, it is illicit to do so. To express His works and measures is flawed because our language does not express Him, but our thoughts. God is outside thoughts and therefore outside language. All words, phrases, functions and mechanics we could ever conjure through any means could never depict with accuracy the glory, majesty, honor, or any of infinite virtues in perfect form that embody themselves in God. He is a mystery in every sense of the word. But that's still imperfect, isn't it?


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