θέλημα - "Thelema" "thélēma") means "desire" in modern Greek; it is the desire to do something, to be occupied, to be in prominence.
Let’s look at them individually…
Let’s look at mania type love first.
Mania – (μανία) finds it's root in the Greek word meaning "madness." Manic type love isn't often perceived or seen as being a form of love. It's not because, it's almost not a love at all. In fact it’s a kind of love that most view as; and as a result judge and label as “bad or evil.”
Perhaps the English word, maniac best describes it.
Although it IS a “form of love” It’s more of an “obsessive” type of love focused on and directed at self exclusively. It’s a love for self-gain and self-gratification without any care, empathy, compassion or consideration of others. It’s a love of things, stuff, or engagement in an activity strictly for personal gain and/or pleasure much like kleptomaniacs or pyromaniacs experience.
There is pleasure and/or gratification for the manic type lover, but potential harm for others, due to any number of psychological symptoms. So, although it is a form of love, it’s a very limited and “one sided” kind.
I don’t know about you, but based on what I was taught that evil was, Manic love sure “sounds and seems like” something “less than love” and is viewed as the COMPLETE opposite.
More about that soon.
Then there's Philautia love from the Latin.
Unlike manic love, philautia love is a form of self love yet it's more akin to a healthy, wholesome and beneficial form of "self love." It isn't an ego centered, conceited, or narcissistic form of love, but demonstrates a high level of self worth. It doesn't seek to harm or hurt others, nor does it act to elevate the "self" exclusively, yet accepts personal responsibility for oneself.
It's a kind of love that reveals the importance of giving love, yet at the same time, being conscious, aware and loving yourself enough to know when to love others from a distance, so as to not allow any outside influence to inflict harm, impact, or degrade your love for self or others.
It's a kind of love that could best be described as "loving yourself enough to love yourself enough."
The next “level of love” as defined in the Greek language is Eros.
Eros (ἔρως érōs) (Pronounced: air'-ohs)is the root word for “erotic.” But, it’s not limited to “erotic encounters” or sexual love exclusively. It describes love as an emotion that’s subject to change. It can be best described as a “human kind of love” that’s conditional at best and subject to change based upon the changing emotions of the giver. It’s a kind of love that refers to and actually encompasses all emotional kinds of love. It can best be described as a sensation of love that comes and goes based on emotional response. Eros is the kind of love that says “I love how you make me feel” or I love how having this thing or doing this thing makes me feel in an emotional kind of way.
But since it is based on, determined by and limited to human emotion exclusively, it’s subject to and often does change.
There is nothing “morally right” or “morally wrong” in ero love. As an emotion, Eros changes, sometimes suddenly. It’s entirely based on circumstances and dependent on the target of its emotion. Because it is based strictly on emotion, a Eros kind of love is equally applicable to passion as well as lust.
Again, I can’t be sure about you but I was taught that engaging in erotic acts out of wedlock and lust were of an EVIL nature, and had NOTHING to do with love.
Then there’s Philos (φίλος, η, ον)(or filos) aka PHILLIA (φιλία philía) - (Pronounced: Phil-ia)
Philos or Phillia love is a brotherly or friendship kind of love. It’s a kind of love between 2 people who are fond of each other. Philos describes the love between two people who have common interests and experiences, or a fondness for each other due to those common interests or experiences.
It's a friendship kind of love that is unique in ways, because it isn't "needed" in the literal sense of the word, because it's freely chosen...or not.
Philos is a steadily growing kind of love that builds over time and continues to grow unless a betrayal takes place between 2 people. It’s a kind of love that’s based 50% on circumstance and 50% on commitment in the case of human relationship. In the case of “non-human relationships”, it can be looked at as a fondness for food or a fondness for some possession or activity.
Then there’s Storgy love…
Storgy (στοργή storgē) - (Pronounced: stor-ye or stor-ge) is the love one has for a dependent. It could be called “motherly or fatherly type love.” It is entirely based on the relationship between the “lover” and the “lovee.” When the dependent is no longer dependent, this love remains only in its emotional remnants. It is one of the stronger forms of human love, because it involves a commitment that relies on only one trait of the receiver – that he or she is dependent. Although it works well in dependent type situations, at the same time it varies from eros type love. Unlike storgy love, eros love is toxic to a marriage under normal circumstances. Marriages that look more like a mother/son or father/daughter relationship is moving quickly downhill.
Pragma love could be viewed as the love between a married couple which develops over a long period of time. It's a form of love which endures in sickness and in health. It can also pertain to a form love in which a dear friend cares for someone who they've developed a tight bond with, who has become vulnerable in some way, later in life.
And finally, there’s Agape Love (ἀγάπη)…
Agape love is entirely about the GIVER of Love. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the one who is receiving the love. Agape love, in its purest form requires no giving back on the part of the recipient. It’s freely expressed and freely given without expectation of return.
The most common use of Agape Love is what most identify and define as being God’s love for us. It’s also a kind of love that the mystics, sages, masters and ancient texts from EVERY culture instruct us to give to one another. We’re instructed to “love our neighbors as we love ourselves” and/or “do onto others as you would have them do unto you.”
It takes the receiver of this quality of Love out of the loop. There are no conditions attached. This lack of input from the recipient makes it possible for us to love our enemies even though we may not like them or the situation they have put us in. Agape love says “I love you simply because I choose and commit to giving love regardless and is not in any way dependent on conditions or circumstances whatsoever.
Unlike eros or philos, Agape Love never wavers. Oddly enough, even though many people marry out of eros love alone, they make vows that speak of commitment and the “giving of Agape Love” despite any event, condition or circumstance.
We vow that we’ll love our partner for richer or poorer. We commit that for better or worse we’ll continue to “love” our partner. Whether in sickness or health, our love will never fade, fail or waver.
But although we DO that and perhaps even REALLY MEAN IT when we do, we find in MANY cases that our “long term promise and commitment” is short lived. When our emotions change, or our conditions for “giving love” cease, we have a tendency to begin judging, labeling, cursing and being REALLY REALLY pissed off, vengeful and spiteful against those who we “claimed to love” not so long ago.
That’s NOT a “for better or worse” kind of love. It’s conditional at best.
Agape Love is about a commitment to the very best for another, no matter what emotions or feelings exist, and aside from any event, condition or circumstance that unfolds. It doesn’t depend on staying together or NOT staying together as mates. It’s LOVING…regardless. It is a love freely given, and freely committed to without any expectation of return whatsoever.
Now, after seeing what Love “truly is” and understanding that there are “seemingly different” kinds of Love, where do you fall?
How LOVING Are You...REALLY?
If there's ANY desire to receive more love, it's only necessary to look at, examine and determine for yourself, where you're "missing the mark" in GIVING love.
There's one more kind of love that is included in Agape Love, yet in ways, falls outside the definition of other forms of love. You could say it's a subcategory of love.
It's Epithumia love.
EPITHUMIA (ἐπιθυμία, ας, ἡ) - (Pronounced: ep-ee-thoo-mee'-ah) -
is the Greek word for strong desire. Like everything in life, epithumia love has a polar opposite, meaning it has either a positive or negative connotation.
The positive connotation is usually translated strong desire, desire of the heart, while the negative connotation is usually translated LUST. Lust is simply a strong desire that is perverted, corrupt, or otherwise contrary to drawing what is "desired" to you.
Epithumia--In a negative sense, this word is translated lust, but it can also be used in a positive way to speak of a legitimate or "heartfelt" desire. Physical desire should be a part of each marriage; an absence or minimizing of the sexual relationship is symptomatic of problem areas that need to be corrected like painful experiences in the past or tension and poor communication in the present. Marriage was divinely designed to create oneness between a man and a woman on every level, and the shared experience of sexual pleasure is an important form of love which enriches the other forms of love in a marriage union.
What “love” means, how it’s “perceived” and our choice as to how much or how little love we give and express varies from person to person dramatically. In fact, it’s easy to see based on how it’s defined in our dictionaries, it’s one of the most varied words in the English language. From describing the score of a tennis game to “erotic acts” to emotional actions subject to change to an individual’s faith in God, the connotations, like the many perceptions we hold regarding what love is or isn’t vary dramatically.
There’s the “intellectual explanation” of what love “truly” is at its various levels or intensities. But although you might grasp what love TRULY is and what it TRULY means in an intellectual kind of way, it falls FAR SHORT of KNOWING, EXPERIENCING and UNDERSTANDING what Agape Love “truly is” in the all pervasive, all encompassing kind of way that it CAN BE EXPERIENCED.
And that’s “true” simply because until you have an EXPERIENTIAL understanding of what Love is…what it “truly is” you can NEVER FULLY KNOW how Infinite, all pervasive and all-encompassing it actually is.
Even the most descriptive, in depth and masterfully articulated explanation of an intellectual nature falls far short of KNOWING and FULLY experiencing what Love truly is.
The intellect can NEVER enable you to KNOW in an experiential, deeply soulful, fully immersible and all-encompassing kind of way, the vastness, power and all pervasive nature of Love.
I share that so you might become and remain clear on what Love truly is as I use it here. I do so to eliminate any potential confusion and so you might become better equipped and get laser focused on a kind of Love that I KNOW transforms lives in a profoundly pleasing and significant kind of way. In a “seemingly miraculous” kind of way that benefits YOU as well as EVERYONE that you encounter.
My personal preference for describing Agape Love is Unconditional Love. It’s a kind and quality of Love that has no ifs, ands or buts attached. It has NOTHING to do with emotion, conditions, sexual encounters, tennis games, a term of endearment or ANYTHING else other than an immutable, unwavering, never ceasing and ALL PERVASIVE Love that fills you, immerses you, flows through you and from you without conditions or limits.
It’s a KNOWING that can NEVER be shaken, manipulated, or changed REGARDLESS. When you KNOW, you KNOW and there’s no turning back.
There is no requirement or need for receiving back, only giving…unconditionally. It describes and defines a way of BEING and has absolutely nothing to do with receiving. It has EVERYTHING to do with GIVING.
But at the same time it encompasses a harmonious balance of ALL of the meanings given it in the Greek and Latin language. It includes a Love for self but at the same time is equally dispersed in a way that touches, serves and benefits all involved equally.
You could say that in Agape Love, Love just is, and remains…regardless.
Love of self, love for our neighbors, love for our mates, our friends and acquaintances, our children and of course a Love for whatever the Source of your understanding might be.
That’s where Love begins. It exists as an essence that stems from and finds its root in us and it's size, scope, magnitude and intensity in which we choose to GIVE it, is a reflection of our chosen ways of being.
But to experience the tangible and measurable benefits of Love in the fullest kind of way; to KNOW and experience it in EVERY way, it’s also necessary to incorporate that same kind of love in our day to day activities in a tangible and measurable kind of way.
Doing that entails loving what you DO, loving your reason and intention for DOING it, loving what you create, loving those that benefit from the love you give through what you DO and loving what you receive as a result of the AWESOME and IMMENSE value that you provide through your “loving choices.”
Put simply, it requires “consciously aligning” with Love in ALL you think, say and do to experience the awe, magnificence and grandeur that Love truly is.
In this form, it is an all pervasive kind of Love being expressed and projected in mental, emotional and physical form. It exists as an “essence” yet at the same time requires both “conscious as well as practical application” to see its power in a pleasing, desirable tangible and measurable kind of way.
Agape Love exists as “unseen” and at the same time as something that CAN BE seen and experienced.
Another way to state it would be to say that there’s is nothing that Love is not. In the same way, there is nothing that God is not.
Love is the essence of what God (or whatever the Source of your understanding might be) is.
Now here’s where it can get a bit “tricky” to fully grasp and understand what Love is in its fullness. and what I’ve discovered regarding WHY so many have so much difficulty making the shift from the lower expressions and intensities of love into Agape Love.
It has to do with what they believe and perceive regarding what Source is.
What Do You Believe and Perceive To Be True and How Do You View Whatever The Source of Your Understanding Is?
Let’s start with what many do understand regarding Source.
Many of us have learned and understand in an intellectual kind of way that Source is omniscient and omnipresent. We’ve learned in many cases that Source is the Alpha, The Omega, The Beginning, The End, The All in All and the I AM. Put in simple terms, there is nothing that Source is not.
And although we’ve been told that in many cases and we understand it intellectually; even though we REALLY want to “believe it” and experience that kind of love for ourselves, we lack the experiential understanding.
The question is why? I can’t know specifically what the WHY is for you. I can only speak from personal experience as well as the experiences of others that they’ve shared with me regarding their views, perspectives and experiences.
And here’s what those experiences have revealed to me.
We’re told and taught that Source is all pervasive, yet often times taught that Source is waiting in the shadows somewhere “out there” for us to “screw up” so HE might inflict HIS wrath and pay us back for our evil, self-serving, lustful or less than approved of ways.
YOU are an integral part of All That Is right? So is EVERYONE else, right? So is every THING else, right?
So, to love and honor God means to love and honor EVERYTHING and EVERYONE doesn’t it? This INCLUDES honoring yourself. That doesn’t mean that you must agree with everything that you see or that others DO. It doesn’t mean that you need to actively participate in events or agree with those who hold different beliefs than you.
What it DOES mean is that you accept them, honor them, or it as well as YOURSELF unconditionally.
That CAN prove to be a razor’s edge to walk down. It can “seem” really hard and perhaps even, IMPOSSIBLE initially to get your balance. But even when you DO lose your balance, even if you DO act out and engage in some act that you “perceive” as being “less than love”, you honor, accept and “allow” that to be OK too.
You simply jump back up on that “razors edge” and commit to mastering your walk.
And when you engage in Agape Love…what I choose to label “Unconditional Love” you do so REGARDLESS or “unconditionally.”
To Love in this way, you don’t have to take part in what you don’t necessarily see as YOUR preferred way of doing things. But you can still Love, honor, accept and even learn to appreciate the choices and actions of others even though they may conflict with your “preferred way.”
You CAN learn and develop the understanding that EVERYONE is DOING the best they know how based on what they’ve learned and been taught is necessary to live life to the fullest.
You certainly don’t HAVE to. You CAN choose to “enable and allow” the choices and actions of others to sway you and take you off of your Love game. You have a FREE WILL. But I can assure you that any movement from the Love end of the polarity spectrum to the “evil” end of the spectrum WILL limit the kind and quality of results that YOU will PERSONALLY experience. That applies tangibly and intangibly.
Your results in life WILL yield a harvest the same in kind and quality as the “love seeds” you “choose to plant” REGARDLESS if they’re mania type love seeds or Unconditional Love seeds.
It seems these days, there are many choosing to plant these mania seeds. That’s NOT a judgment. It IS however an accurate observation based on the reality of the tangible and measurable world.
Their choices can’t impact or affect YOU unless and until YOU choose to allow them to. There is NO ONE and NO THING outside of you that can MAKE you respond or react in any way other than YOU choose to.
So why would we and why DO we judge, label and condemn ANYONE or ANYTHING?
That brings us full circle.
Because of what WE believe and perceive to be “true” regarding love, life, ourselves, others and equally important, the Source of our understanding. That’s what determines what we judge and label as being “real, right, true, good, bad, moral, immoral, sacred, evil, etc. etc., which in turn determines our individual responses or reactions to what’s outside of ourselves.
That not only CAN but DOES impact and affect YOU.
Here’s the point I’ve been building up to.
Love IS the essence of life. It’s what drives and sustains life. It’s what enables and allows EVERY aspect of life to become real and tangible in life without exception. It doesn’t matter if it’s being expressed or projected in a manic kind of way or in an Unconditional kind of way. The kind, quality, intensity of Love regardless of how “narrowly focused” or “expansive” you enable and allow it to become in your own mind determines how narrow or expansive you “perceive it” to be.
Love is of the heart. It's inherent within you. It can never be taken away.
Fear is of the mind. It's a programmed and conditioned reaction when we experience what we believe is "less than love."
You get to be right. You get to experience AS you choose, JUST as you choose.
And perhaps the most seemingly difficult thing for MOST to grasp and understand is the fact that’s it’s ALL sacred.
Source is Agape Love. You are an extension of that Love. So is everyone else…unconditionally. So EVERYTHING and EVERY ONE in the tangible world of shape and form is derived from Love right? To dishonor, judge, label and condemn others, yourself, or ANY event condition or circumstance as being “less than sacred” is, in essence dishonoring, judging, labeling and condemning Love…Source.
The same kind of focus can be utilized in your day to day life. It IS determining EVERY aspect of your life mentally, emotionally and physically. It’s not a choice you HAVE to make. It’s a choice that you been provided the gift and the FREE WILL to make or not which always has determined, is determining and will continue to determine the kind and quality of your individual experiences in life.
It’s safe to say that it’s a choice and quality of focus that not only CAN but WILL transform your entire world in a way that you LOVE but also, at the same time, has the capability to create calamity, adversity and disaster.
It only depends on the kind and quality of Love that YOU choose to give. It only depends on the intensity of love that YOU choose to project. You can’t NOT love but you CAN and MANY do limit the kind of love that they choose to give and express.
Manic love is a good example. Although it may provide “short term” desirable results for a single individual, due to its limited, narrowly focused and self-serving nature, in the long term the love experienced is VERY limited in comparison to the kind and quality of Love that’s “truly available.”
Inevitably, it’s YOU that “gets to choose” that. You “get to” open yourself fully to Love or close yourself off. You can never be “truly cut off”, simply because you are an integral part of this Love. (Source) Feeling “cut off” from Love or Source is really nothing more or less than you constructing the wall in your own mind and through your own beliefs, thoughts, focus, words and actions that enables the fearful and at times “seemingly unbearable” sensations that “feeling cut off” provides.
But you’re NEVER cut off, unless and until you CHOOSE to be.
Choose love and you'll see that you are, always have been and always will the master and chooser of your life...unconditionally, or if you prefer...regardless.
Stay tuned...more Love Seeds to follow.
Here's to You, Love and Mastery,
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