copyright 2009 Scholarisland LLC




"What is love? A breeze rustling amid the sweetbriar...a

golden glow in the blood."

Knut Hamsun


"Love is the final end of the world's history, the Amen of the Universe."

-Novalis ,Hymns and Thoughts on Religion


"He whom love touches not walks in darkness."



"He who does not love does not know God, for God is love." (1 John 4:8)


"The receptive quality of love allows every experience to enter us, to teach us. it allows us to be touched by the wind and the sun, by other people, and by each part of ourselves, by the trees, the birds, and all of nature. (It) is the practice of intimacy with all of life."

-Joseph Goldstein


"Love is not all.....

Love can not fill the thickened lung with


Nor clean the blood, nor set the fractured


Yet many a man is making friends with


Even as I speak, for lack of love alone."

-Edna St. Vincent Millay  (Fatal Interview" (1923)



"Love is at the same time, the most generous and the most egotistical thing in nature, the most generous because it receives nothing and gives all-pure mind being only able to give and not receive, the most egotistical, for that which he seeks in the subject, that which he enjoys in it, is himself and never anything else."

-Jean-Paul Sartre


"The heart of another is a dark forest, always, no matter how close it has been to one's own."

-Willa Cather



"Three-Fourths of the people you will meet tomorrow are hungering and thirsting for sympathy. Give it to them, and they will love you."

-Dale Carnegie


"Where love rules, there is no will to power; and where power predominates there love is lacking. The one is the shadow of the other."

-Carl Jung


"Oh thou who art trying to learn the marvel of love from the copybook of reason, I am very much afraid that you will never really see the point."

-Hafiz   Persian Poet


"Love is not thinking, but being."

-Antoine de Saint-Exupery


"Love is a kind of warfare."





   "If you are ready for some radical-and possibly disturbing-self-knowledge, you might undertake an assessment of your L.Q.-love quotient. How much does the desire to be a more loving person figure in your life? how wide or narrow is the circle of those you love? How many of your daily activities are suffused with feelings of love? Which of the many varieties of love do you practice? (For suggestions, consult "Love" in Roget's Thesaurus)

Sam Keene

Hymns to an Unknown God


"This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you."

-John 15:12


   "How does one attain this quality of love? Anything you do will only make it forced, cultivated and therefore phony, for love cannot be forced. There is nothing you can do. But there is something you can drop. Observe the marvelous change that comes over you the moment you stop seeing people as good and bad, as saints and sinners and begin to see them as unaware and ignorant. You must drop your false belief that people can sin in awareness. No one can sin in the light of awareness. Sin occurs, not, as we mistakenly think, in malice, but in ignorance. "Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing." To see this is to acquire the indiscriminate quality one so admires in the rose, the lamp and the tree."

Anthony De Mello S.J.

The Way To Love   The last meditations


   "Our culture of illusion is, at its core, a culture of death. it will die and leave little of value behind. it was Sparta that celebrated raw militarism, discipline, obedience, and power, but it was Athenian art and philosophy that echoed down the ages to enlighten new worlds, including our own. Hope exists. it will always exist. it will not come through structures or institutions, nor will it come through nation-states, but it will prevail, even if we as distinct individuals and civilizations vanish. The power of love is greater than the power of death. it cannot be controlled. It is about sacrifice for the other-something nearly every parent understands-rather than exploitation. it is about honoring the sacred. And power elites have for millennia tried and failed to crush the force of love. Blind and dumb, indifferent to the siren calls of celebrity, unable to bow before illusions, defying the lust for power, love constantly rises up to remind a wayward society of what is real and what is illusion. Love will endure, even if it appears darkness has swallowed us all, to triumph over the wreckage that remains."

-Chris Hedges

Empire of Illusion


"The Book of Life  begins with a man and a woman in a garden. It ends with Revelations."

-Oscar Wilde


"But to see her

was to love her,

love but her,

and love her


-Robert Burns


"Is there more? More than Love and Death? Then tell me its name!"

-Emily Dickinson


"Need I tell you the following: love is a scarce and inestimable treasure that is appalling to lose. that is rudimentary human wisdom, the stuff of every civilization's literature and poetry and psalms for thousands of years...."

-Patricia Pearson


   "A lot of lip service is paid to love: "God is love....Love makes the world go' round.....Love is the morning and the evening star....What the world needs now is love, sweet love," and so on. it is widely assumed that love is the answer to all our problems and that it comes naturally. We may "have to be taught, before we are six or or seven or eight, to hate all the things our relatives hate," but we are supposed to know how to love.

   I think we do not. Love may be partly grace or chemistry, but it is also an art that must be learned. it takes years of practice to develop a skillful heart.

   In the beginning is the intention....."

Sam Keen

Hymns To An unknown God



"Love is not love until love's vulnerable."

-Theodore Roethke


"The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost."

-G.K. Chesterton


"Love is what you've been through with somebody."

-James Thurber (1894-1961)


"Many of us settle for something less than love, even in our most intimate relationships. Most of us know couples who despise each other and yet stay together, living as if in an armed camp.":

-Kathleen Norris

amazing Grace; A Vocabulary of Faith



"To love someone

means to see him as

God intended."



"If I know

what love is,

it is because

of you."

-Hermann Hesse



"We cease loving ourselves if no one loves us."

-Germaine De Stael


"When we boldly seek love, love reveals itself to us.

    and we end up attracting more love.

If one person loves us, everyone loves us."

-Paulo Coelho


"In our life there is a single color, as on an artist's palette, which provides the meaning of life and art. It is the color of love."

-Marc Chagall


"In fact, the whole passion ordinarily termed love (and heaven help me if I can think of any other term to apply to it) is of such exceeding triviality that I see nothing that I think comparable to it."

-Marcus Tullius Cicero


   "One also has to find out for oneself what love is. That word is one of the most loaded of words; everybody uses it and its usage ranges from the most cunning to the most simple. But what is it actually? What is the state of the heart and the mind that loves? Is love pleasure? Please do ask these questions of yourself. Is love desire? If it is pleasure, then with it must go pain. If pleasure and pain are associated with love, then it is obviously not love. "

J. Krishnamurti


"There is a land of the living and land of the dead. The bridge is love ; the only truth, the only survival. "

Thornton Wilder

The Bridge of San Luis Rey


"Of love we may expect anything….Our inner-wealth or poverty is in proportion to our vision. Love wipes the mirror clean. There can be no broadening of one’s vision without a corresponding leap of love."

Henry Miller

Love and How it gets that Way


"One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life: That word is love."

Sophocles (496?-406 BCE)


"One must learn to love oneself....with a wholesome and healthy love, so that one can bear to be with oneself and need not roam."

-Friedrich Nietzsche


"In real love you want the other person's good. In romantic love you want the other person."

-Margaret Anderson The Fiery Fountains


"When one is in love, one begins by deceiving oneself. And one ends by deceiving others. That is what the world calls a romance."

-Oscar Wilde


   "Now let's wander over into sociology. The prize concept of the sociologists is a fascinating one: love. Yes, I know what you're going to say: The idea of finding the origin of the concept love is preposterous. But wait a minute. What the sociologists have in mind is "romantic love" in contrast to all other species of love-the love that tends to idealize the beloved, the "fated" kind, the You-were-meant-for-me-and-I-was-meant-for-you type. That idea, historians assure us, hasn't always been around-at least not in our Western culture. It dates back, they tell us, to the days of chivalry, the twelfth-century troubadours, and eventually to the Arabs, who brought the idea to Europe from the East. There is a full analysis of the mater in the book Love in the Western World by the Swiss writer Denis de Rougemont, who found the earliest traces of romantic love in the Tristan and Isolde myth. he says flatly: "The earliest passionate lovers whose story has reached us are Abelard and Heloise, who lived in the first half of the twelfth century; and it is in the middle of this same century that love was first recognized and encouraged as a passion worth cultivating."

-Rudolf Flesch

The Art of Clear Thinking


"Our present economic, social and international arrangements are based, in large measure, upon organized lovelesness."

Aldous Huxley


"(Love is) the joy of the good, the wonder of the wise, the amazement of the gods."

Plato (428-348 BCE)


"All of everything that I understand, I understand only because I love."

Leo Tolstoy


And when two people understand each other in their inmost hearts,

their words are sweet and strong, like the fragrance of orchids . "

Ta Chuan/The Great Treatise


"The word "love" has by no means the same sense for both sexes and this is one of the serious misunderstandings that divide them."

-Simone De Beauvoir


"True love is like ghosts, which everybody talks about and few have seen."

-Francois De La Rochefoucauld 


"Love just doesn't sit there, like a stone, it has to be made, like bread; re-made all the time, made new."

-Ursula K. Le Guin


"Love is a tyrant sparing none."

-Pierre Corneille


"If two people love each other, there can be no happy end to it."

-Ernest Hemingway


"Love's a disease. But curable."

-Rose Macaulay


"A man can be short and dumpy and getting bald but if he has fire, women will like him."

-Mae West


"Love and passion are two different states of soul which poets, men of the world, philosophers and boobies continually confound. Love entails a mutuality of sentiment, the certainty of unfailing joys, a reciprocity of pleasure and a oneness of feeling that are too complete to allow room for jealousy. So that possession is a means and not an end; infidelity hurts but does not separate; the soul is neither more nor less ardent or stirred; it is incessantly happy. In short, desire, which a divine exhalation spreads over the immensity of time from one extremity to the other, stains us with an identical tint: love is like the purest of blue skies. Passion is but the presentiment of love and its infinitude, to which all yearning souls aspire. Passion is hope, but hope may be disappointed. Passion means both suffering and mutability;  more than one passion without dishonor, since it is so natural to reach out impetuously towards happiness ! But in life there is only one love. "


History of the 13



"And only the last love of a woman can satisfy the first love of a man. "



'The gods love each other consciously. Conscious lovers become gods."

A.R. Orage

On Love


"Love is, sooner or later, the beginning of all suffering."

Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau, Archbishop of Salzburg (1611)


"When we want to read of the deeds that are done for love, whither do we turn?

To the murder column."

-G.B. Shaw


"I love her and she loves me, and we hate each other with a wild hatred born of love."

-August Strindberg


"The great tragedy of life is not that men perish, but that they cease to love."

-W. Somerset Maugham


"One would always want to think of oneself as being on the side of love, ready to recognize it and wish it well-but , when confronted with it in others , one so often resented it, questioned its true nature, secretly dismissed the particular instance as folly or promiscuity. Was it merely jealousy, or a reluctance to admit so noble and enviable a sentiment in anyone but oneself?"

-Shirley Hazzard


"The heart that can no longer/ Love passionately, must with fury hate."

-jean Racine


"O tell her, brief is life but love is long."

-Alfred Lord Tennyson


"I have learned not to worry about love; but to honor its coming with all my heart."

-Alice Walker



"Men should pray to be spared the experience of love without wisdom and strength. Or, finding themselves in love, they should pray for knowledge and power to guide their love, Love is 'not enough."

A.R. Orage


"True love is no game of the faint-hearted and the weak; it is born of strength and understanding."

Meher Baba



"Believe in love, it takes all, it gives all."




"Of all the worn, smudged, dog ' s -eared words in our vocabulary, "love" is surely the grubbiest, smelliest, slimiest. Bawled from a million pulpits, lasciviously crooned through hundreds of millions of loud-speakers, it has become an outrage to good taste and decent feeling, an obscenity which one hesitates ,to pronounce. And yet it has to be pronounced, for, after all, Love is the last word. "

Aldous Huxley


   "So self-contradictory, indeed, has love become that some of those studying family life have concluded that "love" is simply the name for the way more powerful members of the family control other members. Love, Ronald Laing maintains, is a cover for violence."

Rollo May

Love and Will



Gently she moved in the calmness of beauty,

Moved as the bough to the light breeze of morning.

Dazzled my eyes as they gazed, till before me

All was a mist and confusion of figures.

Ne' er had I sought her, and ne'er she sought me;

Fated the hour, and the love and the meeting.


(from a poem by Umar ibn 'bibi Rabiah-translated by

W.G. Palgrave)



"Emotional love, when not accompanied by instinctive love (as it seldom is), rarely results in offspring; and when it does, biology is not served, Strange creatures arise from the embraces of emotional love, mermen and mermaids, bluebeards and les belles dames sans merci, Emotional love is not only short-lived, but it evokes its slayer. Such love creates hate in its object, if hatred is not already there, The emotional lover soon becomes an object of indifference and quickly thereafter of hatred. These are the tragedies of love emotional,"

A.R, Orage

On Love


"The good news is that human beings are designed to fall in love. The bad news is that they aren't designed to stay there."

Robert Wright

The Moral Animal


"All lovers are not indivisible

Though wondrous is their ardent union,

For love is only an eternal strife

and kisses but the Fiery truths that tell of cataclysm.

We are never one

But eager enemies in this passionate life."

Blanche Shoemaker Wagstaff



"If one wished to be perfectly sincere, one would have to admit there are two kinds of love well-fed and ill-fed. The rest is pure fiction."



"Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit."

-Peter Ustinov


"Two persons love in one another the future good which they aid

one another to unfold."

Margaret Fuller



"We don't believe in rheumatism and true love until after the first

attack. "

Marie Ebner Von Eschenback



"Don't you think I was made for you? I feel like you had me ordered-and I was delivered to you-to be worn-I want you to wear me, like a watch-charm or a button hole bouquet-to the world."

-Zelda Fitzgerald  letter to F. Scott


"This being in love is great-you get a lot of compliments and begin to think you are a great guy."

-F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Crack-Up


"It's just that we don't understand what's the matter....Why did we lose peace and love and health, one after the other? If we knew, if there was anybody to tell us, I believe we could try. I'd try so hard."

-F. Scott Fitzgerald, One Trip Abroad


"When you love someone all your saved-up wishes start coming out."

-Elizabeth Bowen



"For one Human Being to love another :

That is perhaps the most difficult of all

our tasks. . . the work for which all other

works is but preparation. "



"What is love? After all, it is quite simple. Love is everything which enhances, widens and enriches our life. "




"Love is ever patient and kind, never jealous or envious ,never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way . It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do wrong. It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out. If you love someone you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost. You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him, and always stand your ground In defending him. All the special gifts and powers from God will someday come to an end , but love goes on forever . "

I Corinthians 13 '



"Everyone wants love to follow them

down their road;

Where is it that Love wants to go?"

-Judy Grahn

The Queen of Swords



"A man, out of charity, ought to love himself more than

any other person, more than his neighbor . "

St , Thomas Aquinas


"Love must be learned, and learned again and again: there is no end to it. Hate needs no instruction, but only wants to be provoked."

-Katherine Anne Porter


(The remedy for self-love is Self-love)



"Thus it is that God' s Law of Love is manifested in every action-reaction of Nature. After long aeons of man's hard experiences in learning how to manifest the Love principle in his dealings with other men, he will some day know his own Oneness with God, and find happiness and peace which can only come to him by having made that supreme discovery of his own divinity. "

Walter and Lao Russell

Atomic Suicide

University of Science and Foundation

SWANNANOA , Waynesboro VA


"Free love is sometimes love but never freedom."

Elizabeth Bibesco Heaven


- "Love is a psychosomatic activity which consumes energy and

wastes time . "

Mao Tse Tong


"Love is a tyrant sparing none."

-Pierre Corneille


"Every love's the love before

In a duller dress."

-Dorothy Parker


"When the winds blow and the rains fall and the sun shines through the clouds....he still resolves as he did then, that nothing so fine ever happened to him or anyone else as falling in love with Thee-my dearest heart."

-Richard M. Nixon


"Love is the mystery between two people , not the identity. "

John Fowles



"There is no real surrender in "passion." Lately this inferior form of love has achieved undeserving ,merit and favor. Some think That the measure of one's love is in proportion to one's proximity to the suicide or murder of Werther or Othello, and the insinuation is that every other form of love is imaginary and "cerebral,." I think that, on the contrary, the term "passion" should be restored to its ancient pejorative meaning. Turning a revolver on oneself or on another does not guarantee in the slightest the quality or even the quantity of a sentiment. "Passion" is a pathological state which implies defectiveness of soul. A person vulnerable to the mechanism of obsession, or one possessing a very simple, crude nature will turn every germ of feeling that befalls him into "passion", that is, mania. Let us tear down the romantic trappings that have adorned passion. Let us cease believing that the measure of a man' s love lies in how stupid he has become or is willing to be.

Ortega Y Gasset

On Love


"To love without criticism is to be betrayed."

-Djuna Barnes  Nightwood


"Of all forms of caution, caution in love is perhaps the most fatal to true happiness."

-Bertrand Russell



"Love is an infrequent occurrence , a sentiment which only certain souls can hope to experience in fact, a specific talent which some individuals possess, ordinarily granted in conjunction with other talents but which may occur alone . "

Ortega Y Gasset


"A youth with his first cigar makes himself sick; a youth with his first girl makes everybody sick."

-Mary Wilson Little


"Love is an

irresistible desire

to be irresistibly


-Robert Frost


"Poets have no right to picture love as blind: its bandage must be pulled off and henceforth it must be given the use of its eyes."



"What separates two people most profoundly is a different sense and degree of cleanliness. What avails all decency and mutual usefulness and good will towards each other-in the end the fact remains "They can't stand each other's smell:"



"To cheat oneself out of love is the most terrible deception it is an eternal loss for which there is no reparation, either in time or in eternity."



"If you would be loved, love and be lovable."

-Benjamin Franklin


All our life is-the hope for love.

And all that was on earth is-love

You think the sun is bringing light to us.

But it is love that is bringing light to us."

Loik Sherali


"Love requires respect and friendship as well as passion. Because there comes a time when you have to get out of bed."

-Erica Jong



"But the particles from which love is built up are too fine to be subdivided and analyzed, just as the total of love is too extensive to be perceived at one time and from one emotional coin of vantage."


The Sister of Katya


"If love is the answer, could you rephrase the question?"

-Lily Tomlin


"God is love-I dare say. But what a mischievous devil love is. "

Samuel Butler


"I am Tarzan of the Apes. I want you. I am yours. You are mine. We will live here together always in my house. I will bring you the best fruits, the tenderest deer, the finest meats that roam the jungle. I will hunt for you. I am the greatest of the jungle hunters. I will fight for you. I am the mightiest of the jungle fighters. You are Jane Porter, I saw it in your letter. When you see this you will know that it is for you and that Tarazan of the Apes love you."

-Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarazan of the Apes 1914


"Love does not consist of gazing at each other, but looking outward together in the same direction. "

Antoine De Saint Exupey



"I was reading an old ballad telling about a girl waiting for her lover on a Saturday night but he did not come and she went to bed "and wept so bitterly she got up and wept so bitterly," and suddenly the scene expanded in my mind: I saw the jutland heath in its indescribable loneliness, with its solitary skylark-then one generation after the other rose up, and all their maidens sang for me and wept so bitterly, and sank back into their graves again, and I wept with them."

Soren Kierkegaard (diary)



"If young man loves a maiden,

who turns from him aside

To one who loves another yet

And takes her for his Bride.

- The girl, in sore resentment

At fortune so ill-starred,

Marries the next that comes along;

The first lad takes it hard.

It's all an old, old story,

And yet it' s always new:

And whosoever suffers it, "

It breaks his heart in two.




"Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,

" A medley of extremporanea;

And love is a thing that can never go wrong, '

And I am Marie of Roumania. "

Dorothy Parker



"The emotion of love, in spite of the romantics, is not self-sustaining; it endures only when the lovers love many things together, and not merely each other. " "

Walter Lippmann

' A Preface to Morals


"We love because it is the only true adventure."

Nicci Giovanni


"Whatsoever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same."

-Emily Bronte

Wuthering Heights


"Where we seem most effectively to shut out love, it lies covert and concealed; we live not a moment exempt from its influence."

Blaise Pascal (1623=1662)


"There is no happiness comparable to that of the first thunderclaps when one asks: "Do you love me?" and the other replies "Yes."

Guy de Maupassant (1850-1893)


"Love is the effort a man makes to be satisfied with only one woman."

Paul Garaldy


"Sometimes love is stronger than a man’s convictions."

Isaac Bashevis Singer


"I learned the real meaning of love. Love is absolute loyalty. People fade, looks fade, but loyalty never fade's, You can depend so much on certain people, you can set your watch by them. And that's love, even if it doesn't seem very exciting."

-Sylvester Stallone


"Love cures people-both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it."

Karl Menninger



"Love is a grave mental disease."




"In love there are two things-bodies and words."

Joyce Carol Oates


"Although there’s a case to be made for an occasional one-night explosion of passion, the only thing that makes sex extraordinary is love. Period. Forget the carnal mythologizing."

Debra Winger


"Love is also like a coconut which is good while it is fresh, but you have to spit it out when the juice is gone, because what’s; left tastes bitter."

Bertolt Brecht


"Love is so much better when you’re not married."

Maria Calles


"I think a man and a woman should choose each other for life, for the simple reason that a long life with all its accidents is barely enough for a man and a woman to understand each other; and in this case to understand is to love."

William Butler Yeats


"Or again, consider the difference between love and mere sex attraction. Love is an experience in which our whole being is renewed and refreshed as is that of plants by rain after a drought. In sex intercourse without love there is nothing of this. When the momentary pleasure is ended, there is fatigue, disgust, and a sense that life is hollow. Love is a part of the life of Earth; sex without love is not."

Bertrand Russell

The conquest of Happiness


"love is the principle which makes magic possible Love acts magically."

Novalis (1772-1802)


"Love is a delightful day’s journey. At the farther end kiss your companion and say farewell."

Ambrose Bierce


"To live is like love, all reason against it and all healthy instinct for it."

Samuel Butler


"Love is what happens to men and women who don’t know each other."

W. Somerset Maugham


"Love is like measles, we can’t have it bad but once, and the later in life we have it the tougher it goes with us."

Josh Billings (1818-1885)


"The face of all the world is changed, I think, since I first heard the footsteps of thy soul."

Elizabeth Barrett Browning


"In our life is a single color as on an artist’s palette which provides the meaning of life and art, it is the color of love."

Marc Chagall


"To fall in love is to create a religion that has a fallible God."

Jorge Luis Borges


"In how many lives does Love really play a dominant part? The average taxpayer is no more capable of a ‘grand passion’ than of a grand opera."

Israel Zangwill


"Love is tremendously passionate and therefore it acts immediately. It has no time interval between the seeing and the doing. And when you have that love you can put away all your sacred books, all your gods."

J. Krishnamurti


"There are more kinds of love than there are stars in the milky way."

James Baldwin


"Love is like quicksilver in the hand. Leave the fingers open and it stays, clutch it, and it darts away."

Dorothy Parker


"We are so trained in the thought system of fear and attack that we get to the point where natural thinking-love-feels unnatural and unnatural thinking-fear-feels natural. It takes real discipline and training to unlearn the thought system of fear."

Marrianne Williamson


"Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get-only with what you are expecting to give-which is everything."

Katherine Hepburn


"No man or woman really knows what perfect love is until they have been married a quarter of a century."

Mark Twain


Love conquers all.

Virgil (70-19 B.C.)


"WE can only learn to love by loving."

Iris Murdoch



"Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments. Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds. Or bends with the remover to remove."



"One is very crazy when in love."

Sigmund Freud


"It’s the living together from day to day….The long, slow enduring thing…that’s’ what we live by…not the occasional spasm of any sort, little by little, living together, two people fall into a sort of unison, they vibrate so intricately to one another."

D.H. Lawrence


"One gains a profoundly personal, selfish joy from the mere existence of the person one loves."

Ayn Rand


"Love is an irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired."

Robert Frost


"Love is merely a madness; and, I tell you, deserves a dark house and a whip as madmen do; and the reason why they are not so punished and cured is that the lunacy is so ordinary that the whippers are in love too."



"One is very crazy when in love."

-Sigmund Freud


"Some people fall in love with the swiftness and force of an electric shock; while with others the process is so gradual that the fact is not discovered until some accident or emergency reveals it to the interior perception."

-Jennie June



Love: that self-love a deux.

MME. De Stael


"Perfect love means to love the one through whom one became unhappy."



"No disguise can long conceal love where it exists, or long feign it where it is lacking."

La RocheFoucauld


"It is a common enough case, that of a man being suddenly captivated by a woman nearly the opposite of his ideal."

George Eliot



"Like everybody who is not in love, he imagined that one chose the person whom one loved after endless deliberations and on the strength of various qualities and advantages."



"The loving are the daring."

Bayard Taylor (1825-1878)


"No one has ever loved anyone the way everyone wants to be loved."

Mignon McGlaughlin


"I still love you, but…….

Napoleon (letter to Josephine)


"Love does not express itself on command; it cannot be called out like dog to its master-merely because one thinks he needs to see it. Love is autonomous; it obeys only itself."

Robert C. Murphy


" A person who is unable to love cannot reveal himself."

Helen Merrel Lynd



"The best thing we can do for those we love is to help them escape from us."

Baron Freidrich Von Hugel


"Love, love, love-all the wretched cant of it, masking egotism, lust, masochism, fantasy under a mythology of sentimental postures."

Germain Greer


"The one thing we can never get enough of is love. And the one thing we never give enough of is love."

Henry Miller


"Love is a naked child: do you think he has pockets for money?"

Ovid (ad.8)


"Not to believe in love is great sign of dullness. There are some people so indirect and lumbering that they think all real affection must rest on circumstantial evidence."

George Santayana

The Life of reason; Reason in Society (1905)


"Love is something far more than desire for sexual intercourse; it is the principal means of escape from the loneliness which afflicts most men and women throughout their lives."

Bertrand Russell

The Place of love in Human life; Marriage and Morals (1929)


"One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life;/that word is love.


Oedipus at Colonus (401 B.C. )


"This was love at first sight, love everlasting….a feeling unknown, unhoped for, unexpected in so far as it was a matter of conscious awareness; it took entire possession of him, and he understood with joyous amazement, that this was for life."

Thomas Mann

Disorder and Early Sorrow (1925)


"We cannot love ourselves unless we love others, and we cannot love others unless we love ourselves. But a selfish love of ourselves makes us incapable of loving others."

Thomas Merton

No Man is an Island


"Romantic love is an illusion. Most of us discover this truth at the end of a love affair or else when the sweet emotions of love lead us into marriage and then turn down their flames."

Thomas Moore

Soul Mates


"Love is a mousetrap-you go in when you wish, but you don't come out when you like."

-Spanish proverb


"In tense mutual erotic love, love which involves with the flesh all the most refined sexual being of the spirit, which reveals and perhaps even ex nihilo creates spirit as sex, is comparatively rare in this inconvenient world."

Iris Murdoch

The Sacred and Profane Love Machine


"There is no fury like a woman searching for a new lover."

Cyril Connolly


"No woman ever hates a man for being in love with her; but many a man for being a friend to her."



" love begins with love; friendship, however warm cannot change to love, however mild."

La Bruyere




My love will come.

Will fling open her arms and fold me in them,

Will understand my fears, observe my changes,

In from the pouring dark, from the pitch night-

Without stopping to bang the taxi door

She’ll run upstairs through the decaying porch

Burning with love and love’s happiness,

She’ll run dripping upstairs, she won’t knock,

will take my head in her hands,

And when she drops her overcoat on a chair

It will slide to the floor in a blue heap’


Selected Poems


"I find as I grow older that I love those most whom I loved first."

Thomas Jefferson



"The loss of love is a terrible thing; /they lie who say that death is worse."

Countee Cullen

On These I stand


"It is impossible to love a second time what we have really ceased to love."

La RocheFoucauld

Maxims (1665)


"Love is an endless mystery,/for it has nothing else to explain it."

Rabindranath Tagore

Fireflies (1928)


"Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit."

Peter Ustinov


"Love, like a sense of humor, is now claimed by everyone, even though love, like a sense of humor, is rather more rare than not, and to most of us poor muddlers, unbearable at full strength."

Gore Vidal

Rocking the Boat


"We must try to love one another…The terrible and beautiful sentence, the last, the final wisdom that the earth can give, is remembered at the end, is spoken too late, wearily, it stands there, awful and untraduced, above the dusty racket of our lives, No forgetting, no forgiving, no denying, no explaining, no hating."

Thomas Wolfe

Look Homeward Angel (1929)


"Nothing so excites the imagination as God’s intention with respect to the relationship between the sexes. The nature and meaning of love in the sexual partnership between man and woman has consumed the interest of the race from the beginning of its history on the planet. And yet the misunderstanding, growing out of this insatiable longing for conjugal love, has been nothing short of monumental. Every other form of love, as the love of parent for child, the love of brother for sister, the love of state or church, the love of life, and the love of God, all have been ennobled and dignified in religious thought; but the very mention of romantic or erotic love the love of a man and a woman in ecstatic sexual union, immediately connotes an association that arouses spiritual indignation among that vast number of moralists who condemn as wicked what they cannot comprehend or enjoy."

Howard John Zitko

Tantra Yoga


"Had we not loved ourselves at all, we could never have been obliged to love anything. So that self-love is the basis of all love."

Thomas Traherne (1636-74)


"Self-love for ever creeps out, like a snake, to sting anything which happens…to stumble upon it."

Lord Byron (1788-1824)


"I dote on myself, there is a lot of me all so luscious."

Walt Whitman


"Self-love seems so often unrequited."

Anthony Powell


"Narcissist: psychoanalytic term for the person who loves himself more than the analyst; considered to be the manifestation of a dire mental disease whose successful treatment depends on the patient learning to love the analyst more and himself less."

Thomas Szasz

The Second Sin


"A narcissist is someone better looking than you are."

Gore Vidal


"There is no remedy for love but to love more."

-Henry David Thoreau


"It is amazing how little the empirical sciences have to offer on the subject of love. Particularly strange is the silence of psychologists, for one might think this to be their particular obligation….Sometimes this is merely sad or irritating, as in the case of the textbooks of psychology and sociology, practically none of which treats the subject….More often the situation becomes completely ludicrous. One might reasonably expect that writers of serious treatises on the family, on marriage, and on sex should consider the subject of love to be a proper, even basic, part of their self-imposed task. But I must report that no single one of the volumes on these subjects available in the library where I work has any serious mention of the subject."



   "In the old days love was a cruel proprietary thing. But now Anna could let Nettie live in the world of my mind, as freely as a rose will suffer the presence of white lilies. If I could hear notes that were not in her compass, she was glad, because she loved me, that I should listen to other music than hers. And she, too, could see the beauty of Nettie. Life is so rich and generous now, giving friendship, and a thousand tender interests and helps and comforts, that no one stints another of the full realization of all possibilities of beauty. For me from the beginning Nettie was the figure of beauty, the shape and colour of the divine principle that lights the world. For everyone there are certain types, certain faces and forms, gestures, voices and intonations that have that inexplicable unanalysable quality. These come through the crowd of kindly friendly fellowmen and women-one's own. These touch one mysteriously, stir deeps that must otherwise slumber, pierce and interpret the world. To refuse this interpretation is to refuse the sun, to darken and deaden all life....I loved Nettie, I loved all who were like her, in the measure that they were like her, in voice, or eyes, or form, or smile. And between my wife and me there was no bitterness that the great goddess, the life-giver, Aphrodite, Queen of the living Seas, came to my imagination so. It qualified our mutual love not at all, since now in  our changed world love love is unstinted; it is a golden net about our globe that nets all humanity together."

H.G. Wells

In the Days of the Comet



When Trastram met Isolde

By Joyce Carol Oates


Love in the Western world-to borrow Denis de Rougemont’s useful term-has come to mean, in the popular imagination, romantic love almost exclusively. Pure motion, passion, "love at first sight"-we so take for granted the import of romantic love, it may comes as a surprise to learn that the very concept of "love" based upon emotion as a high value, and not as an outlaw passion, is relatively new in the history of mankind.

Romantic love isn’t so much a love that defies conventions, for romantic love is of all love types the most conventional, as a love that arises with seeming spontaneity; unwilled, undirected by others’ suggestions or admonitions, raw and unpremeditated and of the heart; not cerebral and not genital. Romantic love is forever in opposition to formal, cultural and tribal prescriptions of behavior: arranged marriages, for instance, in which brides and their dowries are possessions to be handed over to a bridegroom and his family, or in which titled names are wed in business-like arrangements that have little to do with the feelings of individuals. Arguably the most celebrated of late-20th –century public figures, Diana, Princess of Wales, would seem to have been a martyr to such an arrangement; her political marriage to Prince Charles ending in dissolution and divorce, and her "quest for personal happiness" (i.e. romantic love) ending in a grotesquely public death on a Parisian boulevard.

In the ancient world, romantic love would seem to have been virtually unknown, and rarely celebrated. Our generic term "love" didn’t exist. The sentiment of romantic love as we know it was the homoerotic love of older Greek men for boys; marital love, which surely existed, seems oddly not to have been much honored, at least in surviving literature. Plato’s elaborately extended metaphor of the republic, or the perfectly balanced state, discusses marriage primarily as mating; by contrast, Plato’s "Symposium" celebrates homoerotic love in the most blushingly romantic terms. How different this is from the extramarital erotic attraction of heterosexuals, which results in devastation and violent death. In Euripides’ "Hippolytus," for instance, the young Queen Phaedra falls in love with her husband’s illegitimate son, who rejects her, and causes her to commit suicide; Phaedra is no romantic, but rather the victim of an ungovernable, unwished-for passion imposed upon her by Aphrodite. Such sexual desire is akin to a curse.

Where to the classical mind the intervention of eros in human affairs signals chaos, disaster and retribution, to the more modern, romantically inclined sensibility, eros is the very engine of life’s story, a seemingly inexhaustible fund of fantasies of (mostly heterosexual) desire. The adulterous tale of Sir Lancelot and Queen Guinevere, the wife of King Arthur, in Sir Thomas Malory’s "Morte d’ Arthur" strikes a startlingly contemporary note, though written in 1469; the illicit romances of Heloise and Abelard, Tristam and Isolde and other medieval lovers concentrate upon an intensity of genuine feeling not found in earlier literature. By the 14th and 15th centuries, in aristocratic European societies at least, eros had become a fine art, worthy of a courtier’s fullest attention. Not coarse sexuality, but a refined gentilesse is the ideal of these romances; the love of the courtier for his lady, usually another man’s wife, had been interpreted as a secularization of the medieval cult of the Virgin Mary, a "feminization" of the patriarchal Roman Catholic Church. These tales are inevitably from the male perspective: the lady is saintly, and of an unearthly beauty; or, in later refinements, the lady is cruel, even diabolical, and the courtier’s passion becomes his punishment.

In subsequent centuries in the West, romantic love has triumphed as a sort of private, personal mystique linked with a high cultural value.

The quintessential romantic-minded heroine is Flaubert’s Emma Bovary, a finely drawn portrait of a woman doomed to unhappiness in love. Emma is corrupted not by an actual man but by her reading; she yearns to locate, in the real world, the elusive image of romantic passion. The problem with such yearning, Flaubert suggests, is that it invariably leads to disappointment.

At least one major American novelist, F. Scott Fitzgerald, wrote of virtually nothing except romantic love (and it’s unforeseen consequences), and it might be argued that writers as diverse as Carson McCullers and Jack Kerouac are essentially celebrants of homoerotic romance. John Updike, our intrepid explorer of love’s willful illusions, would seem as American heir of Proust in both the poetic precision of his style and his fascination with erotic infatuation. Updike’s preoccupations bring to mind a question of de Rougemont: "Without adultery, what would happen to imaginative writing?"

Coming of age in America for most of us has to do with falling under the spell of the culture’s seductive promises about love: to grow up in the 50’s , as I did, was to be bombarded with images of every kind of romantic-love idea. Advertisements presented unfailingly pretty, feminine girl-women in various stages of bliss, always male-related; Hollywood movies dramatized the predominant-possibly for women the only-story of significance, the love story. Apart from these images of individuals fulfilled by romance, there were few others, and none as glamorous. (What images of the intellectual life, for instance? The artistic life?) Of course, these are clichés, and yet-what power clichés possess when we’re young and vulnerable. "Romance" for me somehow became disembodies from any particular figure or icon and attached itself to the quest for adventure, and wild exploration itself. Luckily for me, I can’t be disappointed in this "romance" precisely because it’s purely abstract and imaginative.

Romantic love, that most precarious and gossamer of emotions, will surely survive the millennia that gave birth to it as long as a reasonably affluent civilization endures, for the secret of romantic love is economic: it’s a luxury only some can afford, just as a refined taste in food is a consequence of plentiful food supply. Is romantic love illusion? Delusion? An ideal dream? Just as the majority of humankind will continue to believe in gods of various denominations when no actual gods have been sighted, so men and women will continue to fall under the spell of romantic love and to shape, or misshape, their lives to that end. Biologists may grimly describe for us the mammalian underpinnings of courtship, mating, bonding, fidelity (where there is in fact fidelity)-but, being human, knowing full well as the song warns us that "falling in love with love is falling for make-believe" we are the species that demands to be lied to, in the nicest ways."

Joyce Carol Oates

New York Times Mag/April 18,1999


"Every adult life could be said to be defined by two great love stories. The first-the story of our quest for sexual love-is well known and well charted, its vagaries form the staple of music and literature, it is socially accepted and celebrated. The second-the story of our quest for love from the world-is a more secret and shameful tale. If mentioned, it tends to be in caustic, mocking terms, as something of interest chiefly to envious or deficient souls, or else the drive for status is interpreted in an economic sense alone. And yet this second love story is no less intense than the first, it is no less complicated, important or universal, and its setbacks are no less painful. There is heartbreak here too."

Alain de Botton

Status Anxiety


"If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Do not even the tax collectors do as much?....You must therefore set no bounds to your love, just as your heavenly Father sets none to his."

(Matt. 5:43-48)



                              The Rules of Love

                           From Andreas Capellanus

                          The Art of Courtly Love (From the High Middle Ages)

I. Marriage is no real excuse for not loving.

II. He who is not jealous cannot love.

III. No one can be bound by a double love.

IV. It is well known that love is always increasing or decreasing.

V. That which a lover takes against his will of his beloved has no relish.

VI. Boys do not love until they arrive at the age of maturity.

VII. When one lover dies, a widowhood of two years is required of the survivor.

VIII. No one should be deprived of love without the very best reasons.

IX. No one can love unless he is impelled by the persuasion of love.

X. Love is always a stranger in the home of avarice.

XI. It is not proper to love any woman whom one should be ashamed to seek to marry.

XII. A true lover does not desire to embrace in love anyone except his beloved.

XIII. When made public, love rarely endures.

XIV. The easy attainment of love makes it of little value; difficulty of attainment makes it prized.

XV. Every lover regularly turns pale in the presence of his beloved.

XVI. When a lover suddenly catches sight of his beloved, his heart palpitates.

XVII. A new love puts to flight an old one.

XVIII. Good character alone makes any man worthy of love.

XIX. If love diminishes, it quickly fails and rarely revives.

XX. A man in love is always apprehensive.

XXI. Real jealousy always increases the feeling of love.

XXII. Jealousy, and therefore love, are increased when one suspects his beloved.

XXIII. He whom the thought of love vexes, eats and sleeps very little.

XXIV. Every act of a lover ends in the thought of his beloved.

XXV. A true lover considers nothing good except what he thinks will please his beloved.

XXVI. Love can deny nothing to love.

XXVII. A lover can never have enough of the solaces of his beloved.

XXVIII. A slight presumption causes a lover to suspect his beloved.

XXIX. A man who is vexed by too much passion usually does not love.

XXX. A true lover is constantly and without intermission possessed by the thought of his beloved.

XXXI. Nothing forbids one woman being loved by two men or one man by two women.


"After the nuptial, the two families engaged in an agape or "love feast." This is a meal that early Christians are together as a symbol of affection and brotherhood. The word "agape" is Greek, meaning "love, " and is found in verse 12 of Saint Jude's Epistle.

   The earliest Christian agapes, unrelated to a marriage, consisted of a banquet, prayers, and the reading of Psalms, at which the rich and poor ate at the same table, the "haves" providing what the "have-nots" lacked.

   All Christian agapes were banned in the seventh century because their party like atmosphere had gotten wildly out of hand. In fact, the Christian agape had regressed to precisely the wild pagan Lovefest it was for the Greeks."

Charles Panati

Sacred Origins of Profound Things



Boise Idaho –Scientists have finally discovered the answer to the age-old riddle of what really makes love bloom-a chemical cocktail in the brain.

Not romantic, but true, say experts. The heady high you feel when you look at that special someone comes from a mix of substances called dopamine, phenylethylamine and norepinephrine in your brain.

"It’s like speed," says Anthony Walsh, a professor at Boise State University and author of the Science of Love: Understanding Love and its Effects. "That’s why we do stupid things when we’re in love."

"You don’t know you are hallucinating, but you have that tunnel vision. The sun shines out of that person’s ears, by God

"We do a lot of weird and wonderful things."

And just like any drug junkie, lovers crave more of the fix in stronger doses until your gray matter just goes numb, says Walsh.

That’s when you cross over from the attraction to the attachment phase. " This is a much more calm, stress-free state," he says.

Too boring for some folks, though. Scientists are hard at work on a nasal spray made of pheromones-odorless molecules that act as love potions when they hit the human nose-that will give longtime partners a shot at passion again."

Society of Limerents

RR 2, Box 251

Millsboro, DE 19966….


"To love someone deeply

gives you strength.

Being loved by someone

deeply gives you courage."

-Lao Tzu


"Love comforteth like sunshine after rain."

-William Shakespeare


"There is always something left to love.

And if you ain't learned that, you ain't

learned nothing."

-Lorraine Hansberry A Raisin In the Sun


"When you really want love you will find it waiting for you."

-Oscar Wilde De Profundis


   "Neither of us could conceal our joy at having met. We both talked at once, interrupting each other. i could have sat there all day gazing into her smiling eyes.

   after ages of talk, we rode our bikes along St. Giles and Woodstock Road to Kay's lodgings in Warnborough Road. I was introduced to her two dolls, one a rag doll called 'Joy', the other a colourful clown called 'Sorrow'. Having got there, Kay couldn't think of any reason why we should be there, so we got on our bikes again and cycled to the Botanic Garden. We forgot what we should have been doing. I had never seen the garden so beautiful, or felt the air so fragrant. Why hadn't I noticed it before? There must have been other people there but I cannot remember seeing a soul. Come to think there was no one in the street either, i saw only kay's happy face.

   Late in the afternoon we went to her office near Carfax where she handed in some kind of report. We went somewhere for dinner; it didn't seem to matter where we ate or what we ate as long as we were together. After dinner I took Kay back to her lodgings. I sensed how nervous we both were on entering her rooms. We suddenly became tongue-tied. She opened her mouth to say something but there was no sound. for a moment we did nothing but stare into each other's eyes. We had fallen in love...."

William Woodruff

Beyond Nab End


"Love is the final end of the world's history, the Amen of the universe."

-Novalis (Friedrich Von Hardenberg (1722-1801)

Thoughts on Religion



Book: "Love in the Western World" by Denis de Rougemont

Book: "Love In The Ancient World" by Christopher Miles with J.J. Norwich

Book: "The Horrors of Love" by Jean Dutourd

Book: "The Technique of the Love Affair" by Doris Langley Moore

Book: "Can Love Last? The Fate of Romance Over Time" by Stephen A. Mitchell

Book: "On Love" by Alain de Botton

Book: "Why We Love: The Nature and Chemistry of Romantic Love" by Helen Fisher


© 2009 Scholarisland LLC



Back to Chrestomathy           Next Page