What is Love?

Love is a term that, like the term God, has been used and used again in so many different ways by so many different people, it is surprising that the term is not causing more confusion. No wonder you would like some clarity.

In the session about life, we said: “Life is the activity of extension and expansion, the dynamic of rolling forward into ever newness, where that which is becoming proclaims and announces to itself what it knows itself to be. Its impulse is forever stable, as are the qualities it uses to create its newness with: love, light, peace, freedom, beauty, and so forth.”

Love is mentioned first since it is the overall container quality for all the varied other qualities. Think of an elephant. When you stand in front of it and look at the trunk and feel it, you will see its long flexible shape and feel the sensitivity of its tip. When you stand next to one of its legs you will see a sturdy column and will feel its power, and when you stand in the back and touch its tail, you will see and feel the nuances of its subtle movements. All of it is true and all of it is the elephant.

Love is the elephant of creative qualities. In other words, beauty is love, freedom is love, joy is love, willingness is love, and so forth.

Why not skip the container term and simply go with the more specific indicators?

Ah, both approaches are useful. You wouldn’t be wanting to touch an elephant’s strong leg and forget that it is part of the elephant, right? Love is the overall quality. You can zoom in on the overall goodness, loveliness, warmth and allowing it exudes, or you can zoom in on a more specific quality in which it shows itself in expression. And when it does show itself in a specific quality, you can be assured that the connection with love is intrinsically present and through that the quality’s connection with all of the other expressions of love.

This is part of a series of questions about life topics that follows the format of the posts about the fourteen introductory subjects in part 2 of the ACIM Workbook, the first of which, “What is Forgiveness?”, you can find here.

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