What Is Love?


A love post for today. I have been wanting to write this for some time. This post has been started and stopped more times than I can remember. I “flirted,” no pun intended, with it on Valentine’s Day, but was only able to address the subject of the day and my Valentine.

You see, I want to understand what love is from my point of view. On the surface, it seems like it should be a simple thing, but the more I think of it, the more I’m not sure. Love has so many different meanings. At least, when I looked for definitions and descriptions, I found an incredible amount of diversity. So, what is love (to me)?

Well, love is not friendship, but friendship can be a part of love. Love is not thoughtfulness, but thoughtfulness can be a part of love. Love is not tenderness, but tenderness can be a part of love. Love is not a relationship, but a relationship can be a part of love. As you can see, once I start a sentence with what love is not, I am able to say that what it isn’t, is part of what it is. Wow!

The most common antonym of love is hate. Having stated that, I believe that love is so complex that hate, as an antonym, is insufficient. If I don’t love, it doesn’t necessarily follow that I hate. If I don’t hate, it doesn’t necessarily mean that I love. This “love thing” is really hard to nail down. At last, I think I can see what Cole Porter was “getting at” when he wrote: WHAT IS THIS THING CALLED LOVE?

quest-heartLet’s approach this from a different angle, or point of view. Instead of trying to explain what love is,quest-heart I’m going to use some favorite quotes about love and then add my comments.

First, from Mark Twain.

“Love is the irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired.”

Uhmm. A desire to be desired. Yes, especially when “irresistible” is added. Love is a strong desire in humans that seems to be universal.


Number two is from Elizabeth Browning.

“Love doesn’t make the world go round, love is what makes the ride worthwhile.”

I really like this way of viewing love. It speaks to love as something like spice is to food. Here’s another way to view it, using a food metaphor: “love is like an excellent dessert to an otherwise, average meal.”


Number three is from George Sand.

“There is only one happiness in life, to love and be loved.”

This quote is insightful due to singling out love as unique in human emotion. If we would change happiness to unhappiness, then the result, no matter what other emotion we used, would not be complete.


Number four is from the Talmud.

“Where love is, no room is too small.”

Have you ever thought about being in a room and choosing who you want with you? No matter what size the room? Uhmmmm…..


Number five is from Dr. Seuss.

“When you are in Love you can’t fall asleep because reality is better than your dreams.”

I realize this is “metaphorically speaking,” but I think it really “hits home” regarding love. “In love” is a feeling that takes precedence over all other aspects of our life. We can’t “dream” it better. Nicely stated, Dr. Seuss.

The rest of the quotes are anonymous. I list them without comment. They are all sayings that I like and feel have value in helping us with a better answer to: What is love?

“Just because someone doesn’t love you in the way you want them to,

doesn’t mean that they don’t love you with all they’ve got. “


“Love is friendship set on fire.”


“My love for you is a journey; 
Starting at forever, 
And ending at never.”


“Love puts the fun in together, 
The sad in apart, 
The hope in tomorrow, 
The joy in the heart.”


We were given: Two hands to hold. Two legs to walk. Two eyes to see. Two ears to listen. But why only one heart? Because the other was given to someone else. For us to find.






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