The art of loving

On the audio attached to this blog where I read some of the prose and poetry that have shaped me during my life, I say at one point that I regard Love as the greatest of all the arts. Erich Fromm in his remarkable book The Art of Loving writes about this at length. Love is the only way to grasp another human being in the innermost core of their being. No-one can become fully aware of the essence of another human being unless she/he loves the other. And more than that, one perceives in the loved one that which is potential and yet to be realised. The challenge of all committed relationships is to allow the freedom of individual growth within the container of the relationship. Just as we have to work at life, so we have to work at love.



4 thoughts on “The art of loving”

  1. James, Dear James, Thank you. I have loved listening to your Audio with this. Love is an art and life with all our relationships is a sort of apprenticeship. We travel on, if we turn towards it, becoming who we are. A journey to Ithica. I am glad to be reminded of the quote from Rumi, “Don’t climb out on an intellectual limb…” I need to hear it! And Philip Sidney’s utterly wonderful poem too, a celebration of love understood. Thank you also for your lovely story of the little boy who talked of God as a feel not a think. Every blessing.

  2. I was given a copy of The Art of Loving in 1990 and keep meaning to revisit it. This stood out for me: “The longing to know ourselves and to know our fellow man has been expressed in the Dephic motto ‘Know thyself’. It is the mainspring of all psychology. But….Even if we knew a thousand times more of ourselves, we would never reach bottom.We would still remain an enigma to ourselves, as our fellow man would remain an enigma to us. The only way of full knowledge lies in the ACT of love: this act transcends thought, it transcends words. It is the daring plunge into the experience of union.”

  3. There are corners and niches
    Somewhere in one’s heart
    For old love sand losses
    Though miles and years apart.

    But there’s always love aplenty
    For new loves and new friends,
    As the heart never closes
    When it widens and expands.

    E. Reid Gilbert

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