Wednesday, November 7, 2012

On the "loves" of men

After the election, today I pondered the nature of loving one's fellow man. Love, a term thrown around without the proper respect due to it, is a difficult thing to grasp after the inherently confrontational nature of a national election. What and whom do we really love? How praiseworthy is it really?

Men love one another, commendably or reprehensibly, for the following five reasons: either for the sake of God, as the virtuous man loves everyone and as the man not yet virtuous loves the virtuous; or by nature, as parents love their children and children their parents; or because of self-esteem, as he who is praised loves the man who praises him; or because of avarice, as with one who loves a rich man for what he can get out of him; or because of self-indulgence, as with the man who serves his belly and his genitals. The first is commendable, the second is of an intermediate kind, the rest are dominated by passion.

- St. Maximos the Confessor

1 comment:

  1. I love Saint Maximus the Confessor. Why isn't there an English translation of his complete works? All that is out there is bits and pieces and books about him. very disappointing.