The word, “love,” is used in so many ways that it is difficult to know its true meaning. Many of the ways are selfish, but I would debate if selfish love is really love at all.
I once had it referred to as “fish love.” People who love fish love the way that fish tastes. Their passion is to eat fish, but they do not really care for the fish. In fact they want the fish to be killed, cleaned and fried so they can eat it.
Then there are those who love flowers so much that they want to decapitate them and bring the blooms into their houses so that they can watch them slowly die and wither away.
Animal lovers often want to limit the freedom of animals so they can be kept as pets or caged up in zoos to be gawked at by tourists who love to see animals trapped in a way that they can be observed without any threat to the observer.
Many times these selfish forms of love are transferred to human love. We choose someone to love and we love them as long as they do as we please and fulfill some need in our lives. If they can meet our basic needs such as food, beauty, companionship, etcetera, we are well satisfied, but when the purpose is fulfilled we no longer want anything to do with them and do not care if they live or if they die.
A man may desire a woman for her beauty. Once she is no longer beautiful, he tosses her away like a withered bouquet of flowers. She no longer pleases him so he abandons her to her misery. He only knew her outward appearance. Had he taken the time to get to know her inner beauty he may have loved her forever.
A woman may be attracted to a man because his wealth can purchase the finest food and the most comfortable home. She dreams of raising a family in the lap of luxury, but a turn of fate causes him to lose his wealth and he is abandoned to live the rest of his live as a bum on the streets with no one to care for him. Perhaps if he had not tried to buy her love and treat her as a cheap prostitute she would have found his inner beauty and appreciated him as a human being. Then, no matter what fate had in store for them they would have clung together and weathered any storm with the support of each other. Who cares if we lose all we have as long as we have each other? What difference does it make if your body becomes old and wretched when it is the beauty within you that I love?
When we search for the realities of life, we find that human souls are very beautiful and they have a natural attraction for one another. It is when we let materialism or physical love get in the way of our natural beauty that things become complicated and feelings are hurt. Our bodies may lust for one another, but if that is not accompanied by real love, it will only be a temporary thing and will not bring the satisfaction we desired.
I believe that true love is when a person is willing to sacrifice everything, even down to their own lives, for their beloved. When one truly loves he will give up comfort so the object of his love can be comfortable. He will go hungry so that she may eat. He will freeze to death to give her his coat so that she may be warm.
True love has not died, but it seems to have gotten harder to find. I have heard of mothers who froze to the point of death to keep their babies warm and, begged for someone to keep their children safe with their dying breath. This is true love. An old man comforting his dying wife and expressing that he could not live without her saying he would exchange places with her, or if they could die together they would never have to be apart. Love in a physical sense must always end because our physical bodies are only for a short time. Spiritual love will last forever. And above that is God’s eternal love that keeps planets in orbit and prevents the universe from plunging into chaos. When we connect with Him our lives are orderly and serene. When we sever this tie we will experience bitterness and turmoil.