Lessons in Higher Love


As a child I thought I already knew what love was, Clark Gabel sweeping Vivian Leigh off her feet, Cinderella, and happily ever after. However on the onset of puberty, the changes in my body (as well as that ridiculously mind boggling lesson in fifth grade called Sex Education) gave rise to an entirely new meaning to the word love and a strange dichotomy arose. On one side was Cinderella and romance, while on the other were the rigors of passion and
yes, even lust. As an adolescent I fought with what seemed to be on opposite ends, yet where I engaged in mental combat, the majority of the world seemed to let the two sides coexist in extreme satisfaction.

It seemed incomprehensible to me that the Prince would take Cinderella after such a long search with the glass slipper and all and retire to their castle and ravish her in
rhe royal bedroom, or better yet, in the royal carriage with all the passion and lust of a wild stallion. Was that happily ever after? (It seems sacrilegious for me to even suggest such a thing of a childrens’ fairy tale, yet this is precisely my point.) For many that I associated with, the answer was ‘yes’. Yet experience with a – higher love, deeply troubled me on that aspect. By this time, I had come to reluctant terms that, yes, romantic love was indeed every bit the same as passionate love. True enough, I even went so far as unifying all of love under the same heading. ‘Love’, as I quoted myself time to time,’is a beauty beyond simple
infatuation and lust, where the strongest form of love is friendship and the strongest form of friendship is true love.’ But even in unifying love as friendship, where true love between a couple and the love of a child for his puppy were varying degrees of one another, the question kept rising,’What was then, true love?’

How could the crowning achievement of culture and civilization, the complexities and rigors of love, a tender caring for a mate that no other animal on earth shared, and the word used to describe the feeling between God and man, be so rooted in the second basest of goals, the propogation of species (the first being survival)? Even the smallest of bacteria shared in this end (although their methods are by no means as fun). There is no denying that an integral part of romantic love is passion, yet through culture and the advent of-happiness, couldn’t there, rather, shouldn’t there be the conception of higher love?