The Art of Loving

I was reading a book called, “The Art of Loving” by Eric Fromm written during 1956. The book consists of wide range of ideas, not about “how to love” but “what love is”. It makes us think that love can be an art.

It is apparent that definitions of love vary based on people attitudes, experiences and believes. In addition, what love is, to me, may not be the same, for another person. We all are philosophers, at some point in life. In particular, when we talk on “world perspectives” for example, love, life, faith, religion and politics. Therefore, to generalize about love and on love, is to make an understatement about world perspectives.

In the final chapters of the book, Fromm articulates and answers if love is an art or not. He suggests that love is an art just like any other art, music, poetry, painting, carpentry and engineering. In every art, there are key elements. Three key elements which are necessary ingredients for love: Discipline, Concentration and Patience.

Generally, Sex plays a vital role in love. Fromm argues on Freud theory of “sexual pleasure” on love and rather suggests, “Sexual happiness” which is based on penetrating ‘hearts and minds’ of partner and ‘touching’ him/her in much, deeper sense. Maybe he meant ‘some kind of karmic connection’ is necessary to be happy and satisfied in love.

Many a great philosophers, poets and scientist have an opinion on love. My view is no different from Fromm’s perspective on love. He has clearly shown in his book that love is an art. There are several objects of love such as brotherly love, motherly love, erotic love, self –love, and love of God. Each of these love are different in one ways or another and these grow in time and space, as we do.
After reading a book, I have acquired a great deal of knowledge on love. However, love without practice and experience is not love. I have experienced many objects of love but still unsatisfied with the hunger for love. In a world where, we are consumers of food, drinks, a big bottle, a big breast; a big house, awesome car and great job. In more poetic sense, it seems that Love is not something for consumption.

Love is omnipresent and our appetite will always be unfulfilled for love. It is better for us because, without love, earth will not rotate, seasons will not change, birds will not sing and life will not exit.

As Eckhart has said, “If you love yourself, you love everybody else as you do yourself. As long as you love another person less that you love yourself, you will not really succeed in loving yourself, but if you love all alike, including yourself, you will love them as one person & that person is both God and man. Thus he is great & righteous person who, loving himself, loves all others equally.” I love you, all!

  1. March 29, 2010 at 6:48 pm

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