“Love is not a feeling. Love is an action, an activity … Genuine love implies commitment and the exercise of wisdom …. love as the will to extend oneself for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth. True love is an act of will that often transcends ephemeral feelings of love or cathexis, it is correct to say, ‘Love is as love does’.” — M. Scott Peck, author of The Road Less Traveled
Actually love is a feeling, I believe, but as a feeling it is only one part of something central and radiant at the heart of all things in the universe … and to the extent that it is a feeling, it is only showing its fleeting and furtive face, not its essential nature.
True, love is an action, an activity. But activity is not its origin or its essence, but its final realization. Its end is activity in the same way that the end of forgiveness may be to mend a divided friendship or the end of giving is to release greatness. The expression is important and conclusive, but it is not really what Love is about.
True, commitment is at the heart of love. So too is communication. So too is communion. So too is understanding. So too is enough-ness. Luck is at the heart of love. Luster is at the heart of love. Luxury is at the heart of love. So too is the Sun itself, a radiant source of Light and Luminescence, taking us to higher realms above. So much is implied by love that what can we say about it is to point, as the Buddhists say, to its suchness.
I believe that the exercise of wisdom is connected to Love, but the connection may be more elusive than M. Scott Peck said. Very often love seems closer to loopiness than intelligence. When the power of love is too strong, when its sunshine comes too soon, when its fun turns to foolishness, and when its course is run and it becomes ruined … that’s when love is not at all skillfully expressed. The Sun of Love leaves with lustrous loss; the Moon of Love remains with mournful loneliness.
Is the will to love really about extending oneself for the purpose of another’s spiritual growth? That may be so, when one is looking at love as something one person does to another person. But it looks quite a bit different when one looks at Love as what one person is as his Full Self and what another person is as her Full Self, and that One Self which they have in common.
When One is Love as opposed to one self doing love, the will expressing itself is not his or hers, but Ours; the purpose finding itself too is Ours; the nurturing is the We feeding Us; the spiritual growth is nothing but the finding of our True Nature.
Is it so, as M. Scott Peck says, that love is as love does? I would rather say that love does as Love is and as Love evolves. Love is not something which requires a purposeful act; it is a surrender to the power of Light and Aliveness at the heart of all things, a surrender to God.