All we need is love; Love is a many splendored thing; Can’t buy me love; I love you; Love makes the world go round; What the world needs now is love sweet love, no not just for some but for everyone; Today my heart is full of love, I know that there is still hope; Love of the simple is all that I need; She loves you, ya, ya, ya! Song lyrics, popular sayings about something so expansive and so intense: love.
In previous posts I have considered love or caritas as it relates to charity. This is unconditional love for all people that extends beyond all other forms of love. This is love of mankind of nature of the entire world.
Today however I focus on love on a more personal level as I prepare to attend a wedding. Two friends openly declare their love for one another as we gather to celebrate the love they share. Through this ceremony they make a commitment to love one another and to care for each other. This love is critical to the overall love in the world, the love we need to keep ourselves afloat, to grow and to advance.
This love however is not the be all and end all of love. We need love to expand beyond the love of couples. Today as my friends wed I along with the many guests also demonstrate our love for our friends. As we watch their show of love we reflect on our love for each other, our friends, family, remembering our commitments and perhaps sparking the vitality back into that love. Weddings are events that most people love to attend. I believe that it is the love in the room that people feel and like to absorb.
Today I also reflect on the love that we share as we say goodbye to someone whom we have loved all our lives. Specifically today I pay tribute to my dear friend and his family as they say their final farewells to a dearly loved Granddad, a father, a husband, a friend. It is a time to remember the love shared over the years. Funerals or memorial services are also a time for reflection, reflection about the love we have given and that we have received. These occasions offer time to consider how we are using our previous commodity that is our capacity to love and to respect our critical need to be loved.
Something Mother Teresa said is so simple but yet so powerful: “a smile is the beginning of love”. I fondly remember my Mother and the countless people who told me how very loved they felt through her open and beautiful smiles. I think I will smile a lot today.
Irene McDermott © 2011