Friday, July 27, 2012

Love, Theologically Speaking

[L]ove is not primordially a reaction, but the possibility of every action, the transcendent act that makes all else actual; it is purely positive, sufficient in itself, without the need of any galvanism of the negative to be fully active, vital, and creative. This is so because the ultimate truth of love is God himself, who creates all things solely for his pleasure, and whose act of being is infinite. And this is why love, when it is seen in its truly divine depth, is called apatheia. If this seems an odd claim to us now, it is largely because we are so accustomed to thinking of love as one of the emotions, one of the passions, one of those spontaneous or reactive forces that rise up in us and spend themselves on various objects of impermanent fascination; and of course for us "love" often is just this. But, theologically speaking, at least according to the dominant tradition, love is not, in its essence, an emotion—a pathos—at all: it is life, being, truth, our only true well-being, and the very ground of our nature and existence. 
 - D.B. Hart

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