Be that love

The recent events in Paris have me clinging to my faith. Evil has no boundaries in this world. It’s scary. Not because I’m scared that I’ll wake up and be a victim of a terrorist massacre {although perhaps I really should be} but because this world is full of so many people who need hope, love and peace. I don’t expect everyone to yield to my religion. Or my beliefs. Or my faith. That’s not the purpose of this. But I do know that hope, love and peace {for me} come from God. And the kinds of people who commit these HORRIFIC, INHUMANE acts do not possess any kind of serenity in their life and clearly don’t know the same God that I do. Which makes me sad. And scared. Because this is the kind of world my children are going to grow up in.

We all need love. And I’m afraid this world could use a lot more of it. Can you even imagine what it would be like to go through life not knowing what it’s like to love and be loved?? I’m not talking about an exclusive kind of love because there are different forms and not everyone experiences all kinds. But one, at least one form. How lonely would life be if your soul wasn’t embraced by someone or something? You’re about to get a quick college lesson on love so that you can better envision what your life might be like without a certain type. So if you want, go grab that worn out college hoodie. Or maybe make yourself a bowl of ramen noodles. And then curl up on a chair {or an incredibly uncomfortable futon, if you REALLY want to get nostalgic} for the rest of these words.

You may or may not know that Ancient Greeks identified four different types of love; Phileo, Storge, Eros and Agape.

Phileo: This is the platonic love. The desire for friendship with someone. A chosen kind of love. Humans don’t actually need this love to survive but it’s one that we are eager to possess.

Storge:  This is the family love. A fondness through familiarity that is usually brought about because of chance. The most natural form; the love between a parent and their child(ren). And the kind that family members have for one another. You know, the whole “I’m not sure I would love you if you weren’t family.” 🙂 This is an empathy love and one that prompts you to forgive.

Eros: This is the passionate kind of love. The one that drives romance and intimacy. And I will leave it at that.

Agape: This is an unconditional kind of love. Love that looks beyond all your shortcomings and accepts you for the person that you are. This form is all about sacrifice and giving when you don’t expect anything in return. A committed form of love. Ultimately, this is the love that God has for us.

Look at me retaining a former lesson from my college psychology class! Not impressed? Me neither. After all, I would hope I have something to show for that four year degree (er…nearly five). I also hope you’re all still with me… Basically, life gives us an opportunity to experience any one of these types of love. And if you’re truly blessed, you get to experience all four on a regular basis. Take one of these forms away. Take two of them away. Take three of them away. How incredibly hopeless would you feel?! Does anyone else think that maybe…just maybe…the people who execute these violent acts of terrorism simply need more love? I know there are intricacies among the organized groups that are well beyond my understanding. After all, I just cannot wrap my head around the idea of strapping a bomb to myself, ruthlessly killing the lives of many innocent people and then forfeiting my own life as well. All for what? Because someone told you to? That you would be considered a hero to the rest? No. That’s not love. That’s not passion. That’s not even stupidity. That’s fear. And fear can consume a person in a matter of seconds when they know no love. When my son was young, like many, he was terrified of thunder. It scared him beyond belief. Raging storms usually meant a little trembling body curled up next to me for the entire night. But even though he was scared, I would tell him that I loved him and he would be okay. And before too long, exhaustion would set in and he would be sound asleep. He knew love.

I realize that a simple act of love isn’t going to be enough to change the lives or minds of those who are set out to destroy other humans and their beliefs. But one act of love might be enough to change the life of someone around you. Someone who might someday turn to evil out of fear. Someone who isn’t lucky enough to have the four types of love in their life. Or three. Or two. Or maybe even one. Someone who just needs more love. Be that love. Evil has no boundaries. But neither does love.

Be that love

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