What Love Is
( Originally Published 1892 )
Love is the essence of every existing thing: the root of life! the recompense for death.
It is the all creative spark, the vital force of the universe. There is power to achieve in the mere utterance of the wordóLove. I think God said: "I love the earth," and lo! the earth sprang into being. Love is the natural element of all things. The illimitable oceans of space are composed of the waters of Love. Whoever loves most widely and warmly is most in harmony with the universe. Love is the key to success. To love your work is to excel in it. To love observingly and nobly any worthy object or aim is to eventually obtain and attain it.
Love is at once an ecstasy and an agony. It is the bridge whereon we are compelled to walk continually to and fro, between heaven and hell, but ever back to heaven.
When the bridge breaks or its timbers rot away, then are we precipitated into hell, and unable to find the door of heaven again; for the only way to go is over the bridge of Love.
He who loves greatly hates feebly. All strong emotions proceed' from and derive their strength from Love. if Love uses his own force there is nothing left for Hate. It is only when Love grows indolent and sleeps, that Hate is enabled to steal his garments of strength and sallies forth to do evil. But even then he has not his elder and divine brother's power; for he was sired by man, and Love was fathered by God.
God espoused Nothing, and said, I love, and Love was born to rule the universe. Afterward Nothing conceived by man and bore a misshapen creature, called Hate; but at one glance from the divine eyes of his nobly born brother, he falls vanquished at the feet of Love.
To love is to become wise with the wisdom of ages, yet to become as a little child in humility and subjection.
To love enables us to lead an army into the jaws of death, and to serve as a menial at the feet of one so loved.
To love is to know happiness but not contentment, rapture but not peace, exhilaration but not satisfaction ; for contentment means inertia, peace means stagnation, and satisfaction means satiety, and these three cannot exist where Love is. Love and action are co-existent, and there is no repose where Love is, but there is rest even in its rest lessness, ecstasy in its misery, hope in its fear, joy in its sorrow, and sweet in its bitter.