Love And Wisdom
( Originally Published 1916 )
A CORRESPONDENT writes : "When people are married we often hear, `What could he or she see in the other?'
"Does love give a deeper insight and see a worth really there, or does it merely overheat the fancy to imagine a worth not there?
"Will you give an explanation of this?"
I will. Because there are few questions of deeper concern to thousands than this.
For practical purposes, for living one's life in peace and happiness, it is more important to know about the laws of love than the laws of chemistry or of the United States.
The question asked by my correspondent is a great big vital one, up to date, and almost a matter of life and death.
Here, therefore, is the answer: Love is not a delusion. Love is the only thing that can see truth.
That is true not only in the relation of men and women but everywhere else.
The reason Edison is a wizard at invention is not only because of his genius, but also because he loves his laboratory work.
No man can handle a horse who does not love a horse.
The best cook is the best lover of cooking.
The greatest baseball player is the most tremendous lover of the game, other things being equal.
The best novelist or story writer is the one who most wholly loves the characters he creates. The best actor is the greatest lover of his art. The only preacher of any account is the one who is infatuated with preaching.
There is only one potency. It is love. There is only one vision. It is love. There is only one wisdom. It is love. There is only one religion. It is love.
You cannot get anything out of a book unless you love it.
You cannot teach children unless you love them.
Money never did any permanent good in the world. One loving heart outweighs all the gifts of Carnegie and Rockefeller in its results on the welfare of mankind.
Love sees. It is not blind. Indifference is blind. The cold heart is blind.
There is only one tragedy. It is when love dies.
Love creates. Coldness is impotent.
Love has that faith (trust) which saves the world. Intellect has those doubts which unloose the world. Love is synthetic. Intellect is anglytic.
The bottommost pit of hell, Dante says, is frozen; the seat of the Eternal in heaven glows with heat and light.
The Devil, Mephistopheles, according to Goethe, is pure intellect. "He never loved a human soul."
"God," says the Bible, "is love."
This earth was made for lovers, and he who loves not, though he be walking about, is dead, dead, dead.