"Because you can be sure, my dear Crito, that misuse of words is not only troublesome in itself, but actually has a bad effect on the soul." Phaedo

Lover of Words, Aphorism #1, continued.

Aphorism #1, continued.

A Lover of Words teeters before this addition that would manifest itself into feeding ego with superiority.  Inescapably, words are a necessary part of survival and for one who finds joy in words it is very easy for that joy to become a search for vain glory which will eventually burn out the joy.  But because of the love, a Lover of Words can strive to escape this addiction with cognitively acknowledging that each day is full of intriguing little near-misses in language.  One slip in meaning and the intent has every potentiality to slip into ego.  This slip can be monitored by the axiom “agere sequitur esse” or that “action follows being.”  The practice of saying what is meant, and meaning what is said, demonstrates that words are only meaningful if we are compelled to act; to make the words come alive in our actions and thereby establish identity.  This practice can enrich life with what is real and true, and debunk absurd illusions as empty hopes meant for mere entertainment.  But then real mysteries can come alive and be seen as always being right before a person’s eyes.  These mysteries are deeper and more profound, more awesome and terrifying, than anything the human mind can calibrate.

This enrichment can begin, simply, with using the word “love” sparingly and to not use it to describe every attraction and sensory pleasures the body experiences.  Saying this significant word without a care, over and over again, actually has an effect on the user, the users relationships and humanity that most chose to believe is not true.  But the excessive use diminishes its meaning and each time it is used carelessly, without the acknowledging the source of love, the user drifts further and further away from ever being able to recognize the experience of love.  Falling deeper into the excessive use of illusions to stimulate that which has grown dull, love can be right in front one’s eyes and the recognition will go unnoticed because all varieties of excess is the practice of the opposite of love; the meaning of indulgent lust.

Again, lust, does not necessarily involve a sexual content but rather an excessive desire to indulge in a particular “thing” to the exclusion of all other things.  Lust is like complacently saying “I love this candy bar” that in the complacently a weird type of torment is initiated.  Tasting the sweetness of the candy bar evokes a spark of joy but since there is no nourishment in the candy bar, the body will continue to send signals to the heart and mind of starvation.  Associating this cycle to love is an existence within a self-perpetuating state of starvation that, ironically, under-nourishes one’s own Being in the very act of consuming and enables the idea, that to be satisfied, “more” is needed.

Without self-discipline or respect, the concept of “more” will be about the quantity which will always increase.  This is the root value of lust and the torment is aggravated when the word “love” is used as an excuse for harming others in pursuit of a higher, more intense spark.  The misguidance increases to cruelty when it is stated as something normal, that though these principles might be normal of life, it is untrue of love.

Love is about quality and not about excessive quantities.  Quality provides a satisfaction that quantity can never administer, a nourishment that does not just provide sustenance but also enriches life with substance.  Once a person knows love, to have more or require less – i.e. to subscribe to the myth that because of love a person will change their violent personality – is not necessary.  When love is experienced the only thing required is to just Be.  It is a satisfaction unto itself, because it is mostly about self-awareness.  Love is about seeing “self” as God made us to Be, and being able to know the good without becoming too prideful and be unafraid of the bad without wallowing in self-degradation.  And, furthermore to accept that the good and bad complement each other to the unique person’s we are.

Misusing the word lust by calling it love – like in the case of saying ‘I love this candy bar’ – evokes the infantile idea that love is only about pleasuring the body.  All pleasures fade but love does not because it does not come in different degrees, or can be demonstrated in different ways, but lust does.  And if one is hurting or harming another to acquire pleasures, it is not motivated by love, but motivated by self-indulgent lust, pursing candy-like sweetness to exclusion of nourishing food, and yet always be tormented by starvation.  Hebrews 5:14 states, “But solid food is for the mature, for those whose faculties are trained by practice to discern good and evil.”  And a way to exit this endless cycle of persistent torment can begin with recognizing the words we choose to think, write and speak.  To recognize it is all an individual choice, and for a Lover of Words, this begins with directing the word “love” only towards that which evokes the presence of God.  It must be acknowledge that there are people, sometimes even family, with whom we do not love, but perhaps “like” and there is nothing wrong with this.  It is not bad to like someone, or something, and it is not necessarily lesser then loving.  Sometimes it is even better, because loving innately comes with responsibilities that are equal to the awesome gift it is; remember, anything worth having is never easy.  Such responsibilities are work but not a burden, and “liking” does not necessarily require the same level of responsibilities.  A Lover of Words recognizes this responsibility as part of the joy of loving and this can begin with using the word “love” sparingly, without careless excess.

Are you a Lover of Words?

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