Love: a luxury or a necessity for the human way of life?

Last week I wrote about a family where the mother had nine children she was caring for.  I had written that there were a lot of questions that needed to be answered if one were to comprehend this type of love.  

This week I write about having a different look on what we call “love.” My question: Is it possible we can categorize love as being a luxury or as a necessity?  Now I suppose most of us would say, “Who cares?”

However, this is one question that has been debated since the time of Socrates.  

But, before one can realistically make such a distinction between what is a luxury or a necessity one must consider what kind of love I’m referring to. There are three types of love: From the Greek there are Eros, Philia and Agape, each of which has their own specific dynamics or qualities.

Every week when I leave The Tribune office the last thing I call out is, “Love y’all” and invariably the response is, “Love you too.”  I believe this to be a fond affection of a platonic relationship where one can enjoy the presence and appreciation of another without having any fear from the other. 

Some of the attributes for this type of friendship are “Doing kindnesses; doing them unasked; and not proclaiming the fact when they are done.”

Maybe one can call this a luxury type of love. One can certainly continue to live on even if the relationship is short lived. It has invisible borders where one realizes when one is intruding or not.

Take the woman with the nine children kind of love: It is her kind of love that leads one to making commitments having the passion and will power to follow her convictions at the expense of her own life.

This is because we intuitively recognize that emotions are an essential part of love. This kind of relationship includes not just willing, but also preferring and wanting and delighting.

But even this type of love may be considered as a luxury. Why?  There are certain types of “recognition” that could be merited for this type of love.

Even if one were to study all the philosophies ever written about the virtues of love one would agree that the highest virtue is agape love. It’s the kind of love that we have to work at, that we need to cultivate the right heart to obtain.

Some of the attributes of agape love are, “patient and kind; does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong­doing, but rejoices with the truth, bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things.”

Does this mean we need to come to understand the meaning of these attributes before we can practice the virtues of peace, forgiveness, and have a passion for humanity before using them?

I am convinced that most people will never really see let alone practice this type of love. Why: Because mankind as a whole cannot usually see beyond their own self-aggrandizements. (Needs)

I believe that love is indeed also an act of the will. But we need to go one step further and affirm that love is also an emotion. Affections are part of the essence of love.

These emotions might not always be intense, but they are always there to some extent.

The answer to the question is … yes and no.

Love has three categories and both luxury and the needs for love are required if the human race wants to continue on.

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