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Feyisayo Anjorin

Freelance Director, Afro-Carribean Media Group

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If one's reasoning is not based on love, one is more likely to make wrong choices than right ones.

We've got the best of us, we've got the worst of us; and we've got everything in-between.
I have not seen any human society that sees love as a vice. There have been debates about who should be the first object or subject of our love; and we argue about priorities and preferences about love; some hold on to ancient wisdom, some would think wisdom is as new as fancy gadgets.
Love is desirable; we seek it and give it, and we proclaim it without shame.
If no voice is strong enough to smother the glory of love, could we be right to say that love is the ultimate guide?

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  • Nov 25 2012: When dealing with ethical choices, one of my major guidelines is, When in doubt, do the loving thing. Sometimes it is difficult to determine what that should be. Looking back, it was not always the best choice, but I have never regretted doing the loving thing. It is always a choice I can justify, and feel satisfied that I did the best I could under the circumstances. It is not an absolute, but as you say, it is more likely to produce right choices.
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    Dec 8 2012: Good love can make this a heaven on earth. When we have been raised well and grown up a loving person, we can encourage everyone else to the same 'position'.

    "The essence of love is loving others than oneself, wishing to be one with them and devoting oneself to their happiness."

    Love is the base, the 'material', the motive.
    How we apply that, use it, is giving shape or form to that Love.
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    Nov 26 2012: Hello Feyisayo:>)
    I believe that at any given time, we are coming from a place of love (respect, appreciation, gratitude, compassion, empathy, humor, joy, curiosity etc.), or a place of fear (hate, disrespect, lack of compassion and empathy, greed, etc).

    In my perception and experience, love opens all channels and sources for information, so it is more likely that the choices and decisions we make while in a state of love will be more successful....that is how it has been for me in my 60+ years of the life adventure.

    Some folks seem to perceive love as seperate from logic and reason. For me, love is the foundation of all that is, and strongly supports everything in the life experience when/if we open our heart and mind to that possibility:>)
    • Nov 26 2012: I love the point you made that 'love opens all channels and sources for information'.

      According to Albert Einten: "Love is a better teacher than a sense of duty".
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        Nov 27 2012: I love that you love that point Feyisayo:>)

        Coming from a place of love causes me to feel open hearted, open minded, curious and ready to receive information without conditions....unconditional love. Love draws people to us, and connects all of us.

        When I have felt, at times in the past, that I was coming from a place of fear, I felt closed up in my heart and mind....unwilling, or unable to receive or give anything.

        People sometimes perceive love and fear to be seperate from reason and logic, when in fact it is all connected.
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        Dec 6 2012: I agree Feyisayo, that love is a very good teacher, opening up many possibilities, WHEN/IF we recognize and acknowledge ALL the possibilities.
    • Nov 26 2012: I love the point you made that 'love opens all channels and sources for information'.

      According to Albert Einten: "Love is a better teacher than a sense of duty".
    • Nov 26 2012: I love the point you made that 'love opens all channels and sources for information'.

      According to Albert Einten: "Love is a better teacher than a sense of duty".
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    Nov 30 2012: When we "do good to others", we act on our own understanding of "good". How do we know that what we do to others is, actually, "good" for them? We cannot even rely on their own words - people often beg for harmful things: drugs, alcohol, etc.

    "Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you."

    This is one of the toughest commandments to practice right. Should we give money to a drug addict if we know for sure he will use it to buy drugs? What if person asking to borrow money from us is wealthier than we are and we would have to deny our children a Christmas present to borrow money to that person?

    Does reasoning help at all in these cases? Or shall we go with the "gut feeling"?
    • Nov 30 2012: Wisdom is a neccessity.
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      Nov 30 2012: How do we know that what we do to others is, actually "good" for them?

      Ask them, and genuinely listen.

      Arkady, look and listen to your own questions...

      Give to the one who asks, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow? Whose words are those?

      We have the ability to think AND feel for a reason...to use both...and all other sources of information.
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    Nov 28 2012: That was the claim of a messiah. Love of God for us, our love of God and for each other has no law against it.

    The only problem I see in this is when we love for the wrong reasons. If love is selfless, it opens doors to mutual cooperation. Everyone works to each other's benefit. When love of self is greater than love for others, then it becomes corrupted. Soap operas are built on selfish love. It creates a society that implodes on itself.

    Tough love is another issue. We all need to know what the rules are to succeed. Yet some think that rules were made to be broken. Tough love doesn't feel like love to the one being corrected, even though the intent is the help the person become a better person.

    When love comes from the one who gave it (the creator of us all), then I fully agree with you.
    • Nov 28 2012: Yes, we can only give what we have; when we recieve the love of our creator, we are able to love with a pure heart.
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        Dec 6 2012: Roy and Feyisayo,
        There certainly is no "law against" any kind of love, and there certainly are limitations created when one says love is "the claim of a messiah", or we can only give/receive love when it is from a creator.

        This belief serves to seperate and divide perple, rather than bringing people together, which is a direct contradiction of what "pure", unconditional love is!

        I totally agree with you Fayisayo, that we "can only give what we have", and many people have "pure", unconditional love in their/our hearts without the belief in a creator/god.
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      Nov 29 2012: Hello Roy and Feyisayo:>)
      How can we "love for the wrong reasons"? That would not be real love would it? Do you have an example?
      I don't have the example of soap operas for reference....don't watch them!

      I agree that we need to know what the rules are , and I do not agree with using "tough love", which can be abused and mis-used. While the basic concept may have had some value, the idea has been WAY misused, misunderstood, misinterpreted, etc. Again....I ask.....is that real love?

      http://addictions.about.com/od/parentingteens/g/What-Is-Tough-Love.htm

      When I volunteered at the shelter, and answered the hotline, it was not uncommon for women to call in to say that she was beaten, with broken bones, and the abuser (brother, father, husband, boyfriend, lover, etc.) told her that he really loved her, and he was practicing "tough love". While volunteering with offenders of violence and abuse in correctional facilities, I often heard them tell the story of why they were angry and assaulted their loved one...."tough love"....you know?

      Yes, it is good to have boundaries and rules, AND it is not good to force them on others with "tough love". I believe that term has no beneficial value because it has been so misused.

      What do you mean..."when love comes from the creator"? Either the creator is all loving and loves all of us, or not? If you believe in a creator, when does he/she/it withhold love?
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        Nov 29 2012: Colleen,
        You have made the distinction between real love and what some people claim as love. That is why I responded to Fayisayo as I did. Many don't know the difference and regard many forms of abuse or lust as a form of love. These people don't know what real love is. I wanted that to be brought into the topic so that people think about what real love is.
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          Nov 29 2012: Yes, I made the distinction because your comment says that we can "love for the wrong reasons", and "Tough love doesn't feel like love to the one being corrected, even though the intent is the help the person become a better person".

          In my humble perception, neither being in love for the wrong reasons, or tough love are "real love". I realize that some folks perceive abuse or lust as a form of love, which is why we don't need to encourage it as if it is real love.....that is why I made the distinction.

          What are, in your perception, some of the "wrong reasons"?

          I ask again...what do you mean when you say..."when love comes from the creator"? Either the creator is all loving and loves all of us, or not? If you believe in a creator, when does he/she/it with hold love?
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          Nov 29 2012: I second Colleens question,

          "what do you mean when you say..."when love comes from the creator"? Either the creator is all loving and loves all of us, or not? If you believe in a creator, when does he/she/it with hold love?"

          But I can make an attempt to answer part of them already. God is a "he" because Roy is a christian and therefore he believes in the holy Father. Perhaps god withholds love from those who do not worship him or believe in him. On the other hand Muslims believe in the same god as Jews and Christians and I'm really wondering who god is withholding love from when it comes to... say Israel - Palestine...
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          Nov 30 2012: Jimmy brings up a good question/thought/feeling...
          Which creator? Which god? Yes, according to teachings, whatever creator one believes in is going to withhold love from everyone else who may believe in a different creator, or maybe no creator at all. This behavior, from people and gods we are told are unconditionally loving!!!

          That is an idea which has only served to seperate humankind throughout history. We're told that the creator (take your pick regarding which one) will send everyone who does not believe in "him" to an eternity in hell simply for denying "his" existance? Or believing in a different god? That is contradictory, and makes no sense. The holy books and teachings of the churches (supposedely coming directly from a god) tell us that we are all one. THEN we are told by church leaders that some of us are simply going to hell because we do not believe in a god, or do not believe in the "RIGHT" god to be saved! THIS IS NOT LOVE...IT IS CONTROL.
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        Nov 30 2012: Colleen,
        I noted your distinction because you understand real love. Not everyone does. Many claim to love, but are not capable of expressing real love, because love to them is based on lust and control. They call it love, and that is what I mean when I say they love for the wrong reasons. Granted it isn't real love, but they can't tell the difference because that is the only concept of love that they know. There are far too many cases of abuse or rape in which the aggressor claims that love drove them to it. Relate that back to Fayisayo's idea and you'll understand why the distinction must be made. An abuser claims that love is the reason even when they have no concept of what real love is.

        You noted a kind of tough love that isn't love, but abuse. That is a counterfeit form of tough love. They are trying to force another to change their ways through force or bodily harm. The principle of tough love was never intended to harm the other person. It was to provide restrictions that would hinder the other person from causing harm to themselves or others (this pertains to people of addiction or those prone to destructive tendencies). Working from a hotline, you are only going to get the victims of control freaks. They call it tough love only because that is what they are being told it is by the abuser.

        As far as love from the creator, many have no concept of what that is. As Fayisayo says, you can't express what you don't have. It's not that the creator doesn't love them, it is that they are incapable of recognizing it, and therefore, incapable of expressing it to others. What they conceive love to be isn't love at all, but they think that it is and act on it as if it was.
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          Nov 30 2012: Roy,
          Thanks for the response.

          *Yes, I do indeed understand real love.
          *I understand that everyone does not recognize love.
          *We do not know for sure what everyone's expression of love is based on.
          *It is not reasonable to judge "them" based on YOUR perception of what "real love" is.
          *To judge others, based on YOUR perceptions, is not "real love".
          *I understand the concept of "tough love", and I understand how it is mis-used.
          *No, working on the hotline did not produce only "victims of control freaks".
          *You are limiting yourself with your own preconceived ideas.

          *I agree that we cannot express what we do not have in ourselves.
          *In my perception, we can have love in our hearts whether or not we believe in a creator.
          *"Real Love", is not contingent on belief in a creator.
          *In fact, the kind of love we are told comes from a creator, is "tough love" and/or abuse.
          *What genuinely loving person or god, would send loving people to an eternity in hell simply because they did not accept that person/god as the creator? That is controlling.

          *I totally agree with you Roy..."What they conceive love to be isn't love at all, but they think that it is and act on it as if it was".

          *Righteous, domineering, demanding, controlling, abusive people or gods, are not practicing "real love".
          *Real love does not have unrealistic conditions.

          Thanks for answering my question....in a round about way.

          Again, you presume to know what "they" do, based on YOUR beliefs, which seems to put you in a more enlightened...smarter....more informed...dominant position? Only you know for sure why you would want to do that.
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        Dec 6 2012: Colleen,
        I realize that I did not answer your question "which creator, which God would withhold love?"

        The creator doesn't withhold love from anyone. People withhold love from themselves or each other based on distorted notions of who or what the creator is. The power of deception, to which religion warns each and every one of us, still rules. They have not overcome it because they do not understand it.

        Regardless of the spin that religion puts on it, there is only one creator, the source from which all things come. Though there be many names and many notions, there is only one true source. When one tries to distinguish their creator from another, they are substituting religious doctrine for pure creative energy. Everything that exists, including the entire spectrum of life, can all be reduced to a common denominator. That common denominator is the source from which all creativity flows. It is the same for everything and everyone. It knows no distinction.

        Anyone who has had a spiritual encounter with the creator knows that there is only one source for all that is, or was, or ever shall be. Science knows of the source through quantum physics, though it doesn't regard it as creator even though all creative processes emanate and evolve from it. Right brain thinkers of the ancient world did regard it as creator and left clues as to how to experience it. Those clues have been twisted and misconceived throughout the ages into the modern religions of today, distorted by human fears, lusts, and greed. Only a false god would withhold love.

        One cannot truly love until one has felt love from the source itself. It can't come from belief, it can only come from experience. That was the point that I was trying to make.
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          Dec 6 2012: Roy, I understand the point you are trying to make and you are preaching.

          The topic of this discussion is:
          "If one's reasoning is not based on love, one is more likely to make wrong choices than right ones".

          I respect YOUR beliefs as YOUR beliefs. I agree that people withhold love from themselves and each other based on distorted notions, which in my perception, you are distorting even more because of your beliefs. Love, and the ability to reason based on love, is not contingent on a belief in a creator or a god.
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    Nov 27 2012: Divine love has been replaced by human love over the centuries due in part to the absence of a divine God. The vacuum left behind means love has become a kind of objectivized, reductionist shadow of its former self - dwelling more on obsession, lust, sex and infatuation - mainly as a means to procreate our own species, rather than the unconditional love that is the mediator, and the one related to empathy.

    I think we make too many choices based on the infatuation and lust for someone or something. And furthermore if we can't get what we lust for, it easily turns to jealousy, envy and anger - which then proves that it probably was not love in the truest (divine) sense, in the first place.

    Divine love should be our ultimate guide, but the God from whence that kind of love came, has politicized and commercialized itself out of existence in the minds of many.
    • Nov 27 2012: Thanks for your response. But I dont think the God which you have called the source of 'divine love' could commercialize and politicize itself out of existence.
    • Nov 27 2012: Thanks for your response. But I dont think the God which you have called the source of 'divine love' could commercialize and politicize itself out of existence.
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        Nov 27 2012: I think divine love, whether ascribed to a God or just to an overwhelming sense of awe and respect for the universe, is there in all of us - even in the most militant of atheists. It's just that it has become dormant during the protracted era of the Enlightenment and the related notion that science will give us the answers to everything there is to know. Science answers a lot of things, but as far as consciousness is concerned, gets nowhere near any understanding of it in the logical sense.

        It's because of this that I cannot substantiate what I'm about to say with evidence, but I'm convinced that our capacity for love (in the divine sense), has moved psychologically from the central right hemisphere over to the left. It has moved from the spiritual to the political - from the altrustic to the commercial. We've become 'unbalanced'.

        Many people see religion now as faux spiritualism, and God as a politician - a facilitator of war and hate (the exact opposite of what he should represent). We see this happening on a grand scale when Presidents and Prime Ministers using one hand to turn to 'religion' while the other hand commits horrendous atrocities at the same time - usually to consolidate commercial interests. This kind of reasoning has led to very wrong choices, and is clearly not based on anything even related to love.

        Love needs to return to its spiritual home. That home is still there. It's just waiting for the right stimulus.
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    Dec 8 2012: Very very very important title, yes, love can end the wars, it can unite people and bring tolerance and peace. True love comes with selflessness, compassion and clear mind, it needs attention. Attention to other people, attention to yourself and the things around you. But maybe the most important part is, loving without expecting something in return. Because it is the barrier against courage and commitment. If people can truly feel it by heart and act according to that everyone will gain love as a consequence.
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    . . 100+

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    Dec 1 2012: Love is the ultimate guide.
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    Nov 30 2012: Since this is a philosophic question then no answer can be wrong. Although some cannot be supported they are the choice of the responder and is right to them.

    I have opted to the Mormon saying "Choose the right" and the youth are given rings that have CTR on them as a reminder.

    Reason or "reasoning" is associated with thinking, cognition, and intellect. Therefore reasoning is dependent upon many factors such as culture, education, religion, and the ability to synthesize.

    To answer your question: love is but one element that would go into decision making. The ability to make more right decisions than wrong decisions would, in my opinion, be dependent on the amount of information available to the decision maker.

    All the best. Bob.
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      Nov 30 2012: I totally agree Robert...love is but one element that goes into decision making, and the ability to make better decisions may be dependent on the amount of information one is willing to consider.
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    Nov 30 2012: We can base our choices on love. But can love be a choice? Can we decide to love, consciously commit to love?

    Another quote from Alan Watts:
    "Never pretend to a love which you do not actually feel, for love is not ours to command."

    To this one I tend to disagree. Can we "fake it till we make it?"
    • Nov 30 2012: We should not fake it till we make it; we should recieve the strength we've been given to live it.
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        Nov 30 2012: Sometimes, love requires some strength, doesn't it?
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        Nov 30 2012: Re: "a successful life is based on commitments as feelings are unreliable."

        Interesting thought. Feelings are usually juxtaposed with reason and knowledge. What do you think about reliability of those? Do you think, our commitments are or should be based on reason and knowledge?

        Do you think all feelings are unreliable or are there feelings we can rely on? And how do we know that we commit to the right thing if not from our feelings?
        • Dec 1 2012: We should be like an expert conductor, directing feelings, reason and knowledge as in an orchestra.
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          Dec 1 2012: I like that image a LOT Feyisayo, and I often speak about "orchestrating" our lives. Just as the good conductor brings in the different parts of the orchestra when needed, we can engage the different parts of ourselves...all together, (reason, knowledge, feelings used all together) or in sections. When we know the music (ourselves) we know what "parts" to engage in any thought, feeling or action/reaction:>)

          When you say that feelings are unreliable Feyisayo, it feels like you are saying that one "part" of the orchestra is not good enough, and I do not believe that to be true:>) I believe that is where knowing ourselves (all parts of the orchestra) and trusting ourselves (that all parts are working well) is important. I cannot figure out why you say feelings are unreliable.
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      Nov 30 2012: I believe we CAN concsiously choose love
      Faking love simply sends mixed messages.
      It feels better to live love:>)
      We have opportunities in every single moment to practice loving thoughts, feelings and behaviors.
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        Nov 30 2012: Would you say, love is a skill that can be learned or taught? Or is it "we have it or not" deal?
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          Nov 30 2012: I believe we all have the ability to love, and we need to recognize the possibility in ourselves. I believe love has to start with our "self" because we cannot give something away that we do not recognize in ourselves.

          I believe practices or skills can be taught and learned which may bring us closer to love. What do you think?
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        Nov 30 2012: I think, love is more of a willful decision rather than a "feeling" (despite everything said in the discussion of free will). What they call "butterflies in the stomach" in cheesy TV shows isn't love. I think we can make a conscious choice to love. And it takes a lot of practice to do it well.
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          Nov 30 2012: OK...I think it can be a feeling, which manifests because of a decision to consciously love.

          And perhaps the butterflies in the stomach can be a side effect of some forms of love? I sometimes experience butterflies in the stomach from excitement, curiosity, joy, etc....all of which embrace love:>)

          I think you're right about it being a conscious choice and it may take practice to express love....AND...It's a REALLY interesting and fun thing to practice on a regular basis:>)
        • Nov 30 2012: Feelings are good if they lead to commitment to love; a successful life is based on commitments as feelings are unreliable. Love is about choices, and sometimes it is hard work.
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          Nov 30 2012: Dear Feyisayo
          My feelings are reliable BECAUSE I make that choice, and BECAUSE feelings are very much a part of love.

          I do not agree that it is hard work...maybe that is because my mom taught me about unconditional love when I was a wee little lass. As long as we say it is "hard work", that is the reality we create for ourselves......so.....start recognizing joyous love in the heart and you may discover that it is not "hard work" at all!!! :>)
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        Nov 30 2012: Re: "And perhaps the butterflies in the stomach can be a side effect of some forms of love?"

        Forgive me my materialism regarding the "butterflies in the stomach", but those seem to be an effect of hormones to me. That seems to be the kind of "love" that disappears once the excitement is gone and people are left to deal with responsibilities - kids to feed, houses to maintain and pay for, etc.

        To me, love has to do more with dirty diapers and chores than serenades and poetry. For the most part it's not that "glorious" and does not feel good at all.
        • Nov 30 2012: This is why there are many divorces these days; not a few people base their love on the intensity of feelings.
          It is sometimes hard to comprehend the responsibilities that comes with the commitment to love.
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          Nov 30 2012: Yes, butterflies in the stomach CAN be an effect of hormones. You are talking about a romantic love or relationship. I speak about a universal unconditional love, which I think Feyisayo was addressing with this topic?

          When I say I get butterflies in the stomach from excitement, curiosity and joy, I may be talking about a sun rise, sun set, walk in the woods on a beautiful day, etc. etc.
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    Nov 30 2012: "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." Note, even greater than faith. Reasoning is not even listed...

    It's interesting that Greeks distinguished 4 different kinds of love: storge (affection), eros (romance), philia (friendship), and agape (unconditional love). When decisions are based on eros, they might not be the best ones. I guess, you meant agape in your question, right?
    • Nov 30 2012: Agape strengthens us for philia, eros and storge.
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      Nov 30 2012: I agree that unconditional love strengthens and embraces all other forms of love.
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    Nov 27 2012: Hello Feyisayo, personally I think that love, all by itself is nothing, except if it is formed by wisdom. We can love to do something, but if there is no knowledge as to how, nothing is going to get done. This is the case when either is missing.

    Love I think motivates us and wisdom tells us how.

    Swedenborg says we are all born with four loves. The love of self, love of the world, love of the neighbour and the love of God. In fact, in that order.

    The object of our whole life is to reverse that order. As you say, some are better in achieving that than others.
    If you don't mind I'd like to leave a link to a book that deals with love from one end to the other. From Divine Love (and Wisdom) all the way down to our love of self. I hope this helps.
    http://sites.google.com/site/liveitupspiritually/home/writings/DLW_DP.pdf?attredirects=0&d=1

    BTW you may know several instances in the Bible where a first-born is made less important than the second one. (Jacob and Esau and Joseph's sons) That is to portray the relationship between love and wisdom and/or charity and faith. The one that comes first is like the learning stage, the next is the application, the use.
    In simple terms. Getting a drivers license comes first but being a good/save and useful driver is most important. Faith may come first as to what is regarded as good and evil, but living a life based on (whatever) faith is most important.

    So yes, love is most important because it is our drive, and thus also, we are what we love, not what we know.
    • Nov 27 2012: I love your conclusion 'we are what we love'.
      Thanks very much for your contribution.
    • Nov 27 2012: I love your conclusion 'we are what we love'.
      Thanks very much for your contribution.
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    Nov 27 2012: Feyisayo, Personally, I do not believe that love is the ultimate guide to make the right choices...I wish it was...as it is easy to make choices governed by love.
    Right choices are usually justified by reasoning based on righteousness/doing the right thing...which is comparatively difficult to practice in our daily lives.
    • Nov 27 2012: I doubt if love (just as righteousness) is as easy as you think.
      Not so many people would go the extra mile when it becomes inconvinient.
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        Nov 28 2012: "'Not so many people would go the extra mile when it becomes inconvenient"
        Feyisayo, based on love, people will go the extra mile even if it is inconvenient ..love overrules inconvenience and it becomes the initiative.
        However, my reasoning was regarding the right and wrong choices. When we judge our actions (right/wrong choice), do we stop and ask ourselves 'is it based on love?' or 'is this the right thing to do?'
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          Dec 1 2012: I agree Madhavi that love usually overrules inconvenience.

          Why does a choice have to be based on love OR the right thing to do? Can a decision not be based on love AND the right thing to do?
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        Dec 1 2012: Feyisayo,
        How can love ever be an inconvenience?
        • Dec 1 2012: There are times that we have to make certain sacrifices to keep our commitment.
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        Dec 1 2012: Yes, and how about loving that opportunity? Whether something is a "convenience" or "inconvenience" is a perception....is it not? I embrace the idea of doing what I love, or love what I'm doing. I do not feel that I ever make sacrifices to keep a committment. I LOVE the process of "being" human, and giving/receiving in relationships is part of the human life process.
        • Dec 1 2012: I agree with you. Thoughts about 'convinience' and 'inconvinience' usually results from the feeling that things have to be loveble and lovely before they are worth loving.
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        Dec 1 2012: True Feyisayo,
        So the idea of convenience/inconvenience comes from expectations? How we think/feel things "should" be? So, if we change our perception of how things "should" be, and let go of our expectations, there really is no such thing as convenience/inconvenience? That feels like unconditional love to me:>)
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      Dec 1 2012: Madhavi,
      Why do you say doing the right thing is difficult to practice in our daily lives?
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        Dec 1 2012: Dear Colleen,
        When we are faced with obstacles/unforeseeable circumstances, sometimes we are faced with two choices- doing what is right, doing what is easy/comfortable. Doing what is right is not easy..the reason why we have many issues of moral concern in our society.

        The reply option was not available in your earlier question "Can a decision not be based on love AND the right thing to do?"
        Yes , this would be ideal.
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          Dec 1 2012: I agree Madhavi, that life offers challenges, and sometimes we have more than one choice regarding how to deal with the challenge. Often times, how I look at the circumstance may change my perception. I honestly don't understand why you say that "doing what is right is not easy". How about if we perceive what is "right" as the more comfortable choice? If we change our perception of the challenge we can create the "ideal".....in my humble opinion:>)
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        Dec 1 2012: " If we change our perception of the challenge we can create the "ideal"."
        Well said Colleen!
  • Nov 26 2012: I'm delighted to read Colleen Steen's comment; she understands the characteristics of the love I'm reffering to, and I have no doubt that she lives in love.
    The book of 1 Corinthians chapter 13 (in the Bible) also listed the characteristics of the love I speak of.
    From these references I think love can be well defined.
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      Nov 27 2012: Dear Fayisayo,
      Thank you my friend:>) I do indeed try to live from a place of love, because I know from experience, that it is much more interesting, creative, pleasurable, joyful and fullfilling for myself and all those I interact with. We have been given the message of love since the beginning of humankind, by sages, gurus, prophets, teachers, philosophers, psychologists, etc. etc. I believe it is time for more of us to listen, and truly put it into practice in our global community. What do you think Feyisayo?

      EDIT:
      Feyisayo,
      This discussion started as a very interesting exploration of "If one's reasoning is not based on love, one is more likely to make wrong choices than right ones", and has, unfortunately, turned into a forum to promote a god/creator. Some folks may perceive love as ONLY coming from a god/creator, if that is what they choose. And I suggest that a belief in a god/creator is not the ONLY source of love. This belief seperates and divides people and is NOT unconditional love.
  • Nov 26 2012: Simply brilliant! Feyisayo :)
    I love your idea.
    And I don't want anyone to take your concept of 'love' the wrong way. It's not just about romance or emotional feelings, right?
    Btw, there's a moral dilemma I've struggled with.
    I think many people would know the same story. Provided that your beloved sister or brother is in danger and she/he needs your help desperately—it's got to be only you inevitably. And at the same time, some stranger you've never met is also in danger. At that moment, you can only save one person. What would you do? And what should you do?
    Honestly, if I were the person who's in charge of saving their lives, I'd eventually save my sister or brother first. And I’d feel guilty for not saving that stranger even though I had no choice at that time.

    Cuz I love her(sister)/him(brother) so much. On the other hand, as for that stranger whose life is also at stake, I don't personally love him but I have a duty to help him as a human being and I want save him—maybe out of love(for humankind..?).
    The problem is whether it’s right or not that our personal attachments(or love) to our family members or friends trump any other thing—in this case, saving others’ lives.
    Would I be right to save my brother? If not, what should I do instead?
  • Nov 25 2012: Although the Eskimax do not have as many words for snow as we are often told, but in English there are many connotations relating to love. Now look at all the other languages. This is certainly a good idea . But from my view I would suggest to Feyisayo to provide a lengthy definition. Notwithstanding, all his work If this is usable there will be tghe Hitler or Stalin or whichever contemporary politician you dislike definition.
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    Nov 30 2012: Re: "Ask them, and genuinely listen."

    Sometimes, people sound very convincing that they desperately need something. Have you ever listened to a 4-year old who wants a toy? I deal with this daily when my teenage son begs to use the laptop "for homework" while having tons of incomplete assignments.

    "Give to the one who asks..." - that's Matthew 5:42.

    Neither "feeling" nor "reasoning" alone provide straightforward answers for me. This elusive "wisdom" is not easy to get.
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      Nov 30 2012: That looks like my comment...."Ask them, and genuinely listen" :>)

      Yes...listen with every one of your senses and every cell in your body and mind.....not just the ears!

      Yes, I had the honor and loving experience of having two 4 year olds, who grew up to be teenagers, and are now loving, middle aged adults. I learned a LOT from them Arkady, and I have confidence that you will do the same with your children. They come into this world honest, trusting, curious, joyous and unconditionally loving...they have a LOT to teach us.

      You are a very intelligent, insightful, creative person Arkady. How about offering to do one of your teenage son's assignments with him? Encourage HIM to choose the assignment he wants to share with you, and join him in the project? That would give you both valuable time together, and solve YOUR issue with him getting assignments done.

      You say..."neither feeling nor reasoning alone provide straightforward answers for me".

      That is a very good observation! As Robert says in another comment, there are MANY elements involved with the practice of unconditional love. I KNOW you have the WISDOM to figure this out Arkady:>) My love is with you in your quest my friend:>)
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      Dec 1 2012: Good Arkady...I'm glad you feel encouraged, because it really is a great opportunity to practice unconditional love:>)

      Here's another little loving experience I created with my kids when they were teenages. Sometimes, when I felt frustrated, I would say....I've never been a mother before, so help me with this will you? What can I do to give you what you want and need? How can we solve this challenge?

      This process created an opportunity to negociate, to learn more about each other, to trust and become closer, to reinforce the idea of exploring and finding solutions, and resolve an issue. It was a win/win loving opportunity:>)
  • Nov 26 2012: It isn't up to any of us to determine right and wrong.
    Our purpose, so-to-speak, is to reveal love to one another, or to love.....
    one another. That love will vary greatly but it will be love when
    one opens their heart.

    Usually, if one is really present and aware, they can feel their heart close around certain people, certain situations,
    and certain ideas. That is judgment. That is fear. That is not love.

    Ever see a beggar up ahead of you and begin the reasoning in your head as to why you cannot give them money today?
    If you really focus, you can feel your heart closing. So at least look them squarely in the eye, make contact, and let them know they exist and that you saw them. Do you? Or do you pass by and feel relieved?

    "In all the places we were hiding love, what was it, we were thinking of?" Peter Gabriel

    That's what we do. We withhold love, the one thing we are supposed to give no matter what.
    No matter what we think.
    If we believe in love, then why don't we really trust love?

    Foolish to believe in something that one doesn't really trust.
    And if one trusts it, then there is no reason to worry about whether the situation, the person or the idea was right for love. If love is everything many think it is, and can do all that many think it can do, then the only choice, is to love.

    That's a belief.

    That is trusting in what one believes.
    That means acting on what one believes, with abandon.

    For many, love is like pain. It's relative. A very close relative, and we only give it and show it to those who are relative to us in some way.

    Or, love is just wishful thinking.
    I don't do very well on this myself, at least in thought, sometimes words, but in action, I'm pretty good.
    But I still feel my heart close at times when I don't want it to.
    I have listened to and fallen prey to my thinking, not my heart.
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    Nov 26 2012: I'd like to join this provocative discussion but I don't know which definition of the word love is intended. Do you have one in mind Mr. Anjorin?
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    Nov 25 2012: I would think that for many, love is relative, and because of this love is widely used justification for horrific and immoral actions; emotions in the end have no ground in morality, ethics, or reasoning. Love in the end could be a factor in life, however using love as the guide for reasoning is illogical and sometimes detrimental. Love is something that many should strive for but to live life on a basis of love seems to go against the duties or tasks one must complete in society in order to be able to live and love comfortably.
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    Nov 25 2012: Hitler and Kim Jong Il were loved.
    I don't get your point.
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    Nov 25 2012: All of my most 'wrong choices' I have made under the influence of 'love'.

    In this condition, my reasoning is highly 'fogged' by my emotions. I am biased. I am not able anymore to be just 'rational' on the 'subject', 'object' or 'situation' I am in love with.

    By this, my choices hinge only in my faith and it is needless to mention that most of us have our disappointments in this field ...
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        Nov 26 2012: Good question, but no, I was not talking about 'to make love', I was talking about 'to be in love', which is different. I do not need to be in love for lust and lust does not need to be part of my love. Yet even without lust, love can be a tricky thing...
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        Nov 26 2012: No, this was not what I have in mind. Any fantasy type of love is instable and doomed to fail in reality, as it projects our hopes and needs on just a virtual canvas. This is no stable foundation for a healthy relationship, as it forges a partner into a mould out of which is no escape but by disappointment on both sides.

        When my reasoning is 'fogged' by my emotions, my 'alert system' is suppressed by an overdose of good faith, which makes me vulnerable against untrue intentions and fraud. In a way this is also a kind of 'projection', yet it is usually based on a period of confidence building with positive results.

        Love in a relationship should be based on trust and mutual commitment, by which the 'love' part is more likely to expect the 'mutual' part than a 'clear mind' may would have. Decisions made in this mindset belong to the worst 'wrong choices' I have ever made. Retrospectively the 'rational' part of the brain usually get to say '... see, that's what I was trying to tell you!', but at this point a consent is just another part of the process in coming to terms with the past ... :o)

        Love makes trust riskier than without it.