November 24, 2015 at 5:41 am #3550
John Lennon’s famous lyric and song title is – All You Need Is Love. How does this wisdom hold up after taking into consideration what we now know about the Meaning of Life?
Building a family is certainly a worthwhile project; our children need stability in adolescent years and the love and support of a family provide that.
Western Christians and Chinese couples exchange wedding vows which are very similar. Through good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, beauty or plain, I will love you, comfort, respect, and protect you all the days of our lives. Others offer obedience and helpfulness to the other.
I mentioned above how unreflective happiness is not considered meaningful in itself and certainly most marriages go through ups and downs. A great majority of couples will openly admit battling against strong feelings of unhappiness in bad years and then there are good years too. Remember that happiness is something we give or deny ourselves too; consider that some people live with excess in life and are routinely unhappy, and others live with the basics of a Good Life and are very happy.
Infidelity in an AIDs and Herpes Era, and cases of Spousal Abuse, are valid reasons to accept that a marriage is no longer safe for the bride nor groom. The same can be said for substance abuse cases, extreme alcoholism, drugs, and other. For these conditions, most societies have granted annulments for divorce requests in approximately 10% of cases in even strongly anti-divorce cultures like the former Soviet Union and America through the 1950s and 1960s.
A 70% divorce rate means that 75% of our society are victims of family instability as children or adults. Divorce drives the need for 50% more jobs and 50% more households, as it drives poverty and burdens social safety nets and courts.
In a meaningful life, one of society’s most worthwhile projects is your family. In family, therefore, clearly All You Need is Love. We love and support our friends as well, but there are always individuals who you will not like personally, and they won’t like you either, and that is natural.
Love, therefore, clearly has to look beyond “liking” someone else, nor even knowing them. The Golden Rule or Ethic of Reciprocity, “Love your neighbor as yourself” acknowledges this fact as well. Every religion in every land through antiquity voices this exact same rule (Flew, 1979). World Peace requires more than love of self – and family can be thought of as ourselves as well. World Peace requires action in support of people we do not like, or do not know, by building projects that sustain Human Rights that give us all a Good Life.
The Right Plan is the one whose ends, means, practical thinking and purposeful action result in a Good Life.
Aristotle, Politic 322 BC
Once we love each other, as we love ourselves, enough to begin to action a Right Plan that builds a Good Life for ourselves – and then everyone else too – then, by way of the Golden Rule and all that we’ve learned about the meaning of life – All You Need is Love.
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