Wise Love? Paraphrasing the words of Barry White: there’s a lot of power going on in this world, but let’s talk about the kind that we all need more of. Love power. (LOVE POWER.)
More specifically, knowing how different aspects of love can help make relationships more enriching:
Philiae, that deep sense of solidarity, camaraderie, or brother/sisterhood often earned through common hardship.
Philautia, self-love. being able to celebrate your best self as you are or help yourself be at your best.
Pragma, the pragmatic love that has you staying up late at night to make a nice lunch for your kid because you hope they’ll have a good day tomorrow even when you’re dead tired.
Ludos, playful love–whether the way people joke, flirt, or plays it’s about the joys of being able to play.
Eros, sexual attraction –perhaps also bodily affinity. Typically we think of romance and sexual attraction, but I like to also imagine there’s just looking out for a friend to make sure they’re looking their best or at their smoothest when a big presentation comes up, or appreciating a dance partner too.
Storge, familial love –maybe it’s the quirks that run in through your family–being familiar with a well-meaning stubbornness or just knowing someone so well that they’re familiar.
Agape, love for the world/humanity caring for more than just yourself & those around you.
Nuances to the above:
For all of these, I think it’s up to people to decide boundaries or what they want to prioritize in a relationship. Some people might want to limit or isolate relationships to one kind of love or maybe just a few. But in the long-run, it’s probably worthwhile to cultivate all aspects:
Pragma is the practical, least glorious but long-lasting kind of thing that verifies when people are trying to be there even in subtle and simple ways like picking you up from work or school. It’s a discrete form of commitment.
Eros might seem odd to consider in platonic friendships, I consider it this way:
when someone’s in their vitality, there’s likely a degree of fitness and self-care (Philautia) involved which hopefully means they’ll be active, and finding pleasure in a companion. As a friend, those are qualities you might be able recognize when looking out for your fellows or complementing them on their appearances (among men, I’ve heard: “looking sharp, bro” or “your sideburns are rad”).
In the workplace: Now turn those around and apply the same ideas to what happens at work.
Can you build closer teams with this understanding? I believe so.
What about your job appeals to you (or your customers? Or the public)? How might the notion of eros tie into that?
How does Agape–care for more than yourself and those around you–tie into your and the company’s purpose at work?
On different kinds of love.
Technically, the article below’s a mix of Greek and Latin words. The comments section is actually worth reading too.
It would be nice to know non Euro-centric concepts too–I’m guessing the African term Ubuntu might be one of them (roughly translated as a community/humanity kind of ethos: I am because we are). Please share if you know of or see any other terms!
Barry White & the Power of Love –I’m not covering this tune tonight, but you can get in the mood for some funky jam times. And maybe I’ll break out the sexy slow-jam voice for the occasion too.