Love Cycle

If love were to be boiled down to two core principles or two basic rules, these principles or rules would be obedience and gratitude. “To love is to obey.” But obedience does not necessarily amount to control, servitude, or slavery. Obedience is something given to another person voluntarily, and obedience can be withdrawn voluntarily if a person is undeserving of love. Moreover, it is difficult – if not impossible – to love a person who is flaky, flimsy, ungrateful, unreliable, and who does not listen to or understand what one feels or has to say. But obedience and gratitude – and thus love – are garnered first and foremost through belief and trust. As D.H. Lawrence wrote in a poem titled “Sex and Trust”:

“If you want to have sex, you’ve got to trust

at the core of your heart, the other creature.

The other creature, the other creature

not merely the personal upstart;

but the creature there, that has come to meet you;

trust it you must, you must

or the experience amounts to nothing,

mere evacuation lust.”

Thus, garnering love is very much analogous or similar to entrepreneurship and gambling, in the sense that one has to assume a certain level of danger and risk in order to win in the game of love. One also has to give the other side a fighting chance. Also, “high risk equals high reward.” People want love, but do not want to assume the dangers and risk associated with love or reciprocate love. And even if there is a loss incurred in loving someone, the entrepreneurial and gambler mentality has to underpin love in the sense that one should never give up on love. As Maya Angelou said: “Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.”

In essence, the entrepreneurial and gambling spirit – and thus success and victory – is derived from that all-mysterious force and power known as love. “Life is a game, and love is the prize.” Oscar Wilde said: “The mystery of love is greater than the mystery of death.” And as Rumi wrote in a poem titled “All Rivers Moving at Once”:

“Do not unstring the bow.

I am your four-feathered arrow that has not been used yet.

I am a strong knife-blade word,

not some if or maybe, dissolving in air.

I am sunlight slicing the dark.

Who made this night?

A forge deep in earth-mud.

What is the body?

Endurance.

What is love?

Gratitude.

What is hidden in our chests?

Laughter.

What else?

Compassion.

Let the beloved be a hat pulled down firmly on my head.

Or drawstrings pulled and tied tight around my chest.

How does love have hands and feet?

Love is the sprouting bed for hands and feet.

Your father and mother were playing love-games.

They came together, and you appeared.

Do not ask what love can make or do.

Look at the colors of the world.

The river water moving in all rivers at once.

The truth that lives in Shams’s face.”

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