What is love? LO22887

AM de Lange (amdelange@gold.up.ac.za)
Fri, 15 Oct 1999 13:27:04 +0200

Replying to LO22790 --

Dear Organlearners,

Leo Minnigh <l.d.minnigh@library.tudelft.nl> writes:

>What is love?
>A question of so many songs, books and other forms of art.
>THE question of live. Love of live - live of love.

Greetings Leo,

Thank you very much for introducing this most important among all possible
topics. Some fellow learners have already responded to this topic. The
dialogue is already showing its meandering course like that of a river,
going past some beautiful places where one wish to stay longer.

I have already pointed out in my responses to other fellow learners some
of these beautiful places, but I keep on thinking how I want to respond to
you who introduced the topic. We can walk along the river to the fountains
where it begins or go in a boat on it to the sea where it ends. In the end
we realise the river is also fountain and sea, precipitation and
evaporation, fast rapids and still lakes, cutting through fertile basins
and desert plateaus, circulating water through the ages.

I have begun my reply to you the day when I received yours. I have been
working upon it since then, although I have responded to contributions by
others on this topic. This morning I realised that my response to you is
becoming a book, far too large for a email list. So I have decided to
terminate that unfinished response and send it to you in private, almost
like a Rodin sculpture.

Why did it happened like this? I want to go to the end of your lovely
contribution in which you write:

>At, and others could you add some of your thoughts to mine, so
>that our love to this subject is feeded by your energy so it could
>stay swirling as a living emergency?

The reason why my response just grew and grew, is that I was walking and
boating all along the river between its beginning and end, sometimes along
the coastline, up and down another river, etc., etc. While I was exloring
these rivers (loving, believing, learning and creating), I jotted down
notes to order into my reply to you.

I will not write in this contribution on any of these things, even if it
concerns "love". I want to write in this contribution on only one thing
which I became intensely aware of while exploring these rivers. What


The physical bridges we know connect two sides separated by something
difficult to cross like a deep abyss or a wide river. We think more of
the two sides than the bridge and its bridging. Thus we think of a
one-to-one-mapping (side A to side B or vice versa) or possibly even a
many-to-one-mapping (side A and side B as fulcrums for one bridge).

But when we think of the bridge as that which has to be erected, it brings
al seven essentialities into play so as to become erected. Even when the
bridge is the last to emerge in the scene, the bridge is the one thing
which maps itself on many things. Should we foucs on the bridge, it will
compels us to think of a one-to-many-mapping. How?

Love is a bridging bridge. It brings people together and keep them
together. Artifacts (creativity), knowledge (learning) and faith
(believing) have often be used to separate people and keep them separated.
Before love emerged, we each think how the many others can map to the one
me and how the many in us have to map on one love. But after love has
emerged, we each think how the one me can map to many others and how one
love itself maps to the many in us. Thus love is the pardigm shift,
bridging by its very shift paradigms of the past to the paradigms of the

Loves becomes the vigour of "deep creativity". It enables the evolution of
its lower orders creativity, knowledge and faith. It even enables the
evolution of the many facets in each of these lower orders. When our
taxing labours in creativity, knowledge and faith uses up our vigour, it
is the love for those things we still want to do which initates that doing
and thus recharges our vigour.

Whereas love is a bridging bridge, it may seem as if faith is less so,
knowledge even lesser and creativity the least. Thus most of us, if not
all, suspect that the order below creativity is no bridging bridge at all.
Hence we avoid having anything to do with it. When I say that entropy
production is the lowest order, people's reaction to it confirms this
suspician and conclusion.

But love as the bridging bridge compels us to go to the other side and see
what is so bad and frightening about entropy production. Yes, a very
negative attitude on entropy exists even among the vast majority of
scholars of entropy . Furthermore very few of them saw any potential in
entropy production as a bridging bridge. The few who did see this
potential also made immense advancements to the study of entropy.

The first to comment on the bridging power of increasing entropy was
Gibbs. He erected the bridge between entropy and chemistry. The second
was Eddington. He erected the bridge between entropy and cosmology. The
third was Shannon who erected the bridge between entropy and informatics.
The fourth was Prigogine who erected the bridge between entropy and

I myself became intensely aware during the early eighties how entropy
production has the potential to bridge the abyss between the physical and
spiritual world, to perceive the correspondences between them and to
proceed with the art of "deep creativity".

Nature paints a picture, day by day and season by season. This picture
tells us that God is Love and Creator. The dissonance between nature and
culture has become almost unbearable. Nature groans as culture tries to
paint a different picture in nature as that which nature is self painting.
Perhaps the time is close to give nature the peace it needs so much. How?
By beginning to paint a picture in culture which also tells about the
loving God as Creator of all creating creatures. With what? Love.

When the bridging of the bridges in your LOs fail, check the bridging
bridge itself, namely love -- agape -- the crown of all

I love you all.

Best wishes


At de Lange <amdelange@gold.up.ac.za> Snailmail: A M de Lange Gold Fields Computer Centre Faculty of Science - University of Pretoria Pretoria 0001 - Rep of South Africa

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