What is Love ?

It is Valentines day, and some of us think it is overrated and some of us look forward to it. Some of us believe it is a reason to remember love, and some of us think we need to celebrate love everyday. Some of us think Valentines is for people to express their love for one another, and some of us think Valentines is cliché.

Montreal Love sign

I personally love Valentines. I think it is a reason to be creative with love. Dedicate this day to people you wish to express your love to or maybe you wish to explain what love means to you. Love is a feeling we were all born to spread, we were all born to experience and we were all born to give. Without love, we can not be complete.

This year, I wish to dedicate my Valentines to the refugee kids I met in the Jarash Camp. They have absolutely filled my heart with just a little extra feeling of love, a different type of love. The love to give to strangers, the love to accept from strangers, the love to express love, the love that has no elements what so ever. Children in general are like that, children who want to play are specifically like that. Give any child your attention, your will to play with them, and look at the loving energy they begin to send to you. It is like magic. And once you start playing with them, communicating with them, and understanding them, then, they will love you forever. It is beautiful magic.

So I asked those beautiful kids the following: “Draw one thing that makes you happy, anything that puts a smile on your face, anything you feel is very special and gets you excited.” They first started throwing words at me like: Theme Parks, Birthdays, Brides, Dolls, Dresses… As I rolled out white paper and gave them colors to start drawing.

And to me, this is the definition of love. Love is everywhere, in all of us, for all of us, at every corner, moving with the wind. Love is a warm feeling, it is a smile that does not depart your face, it is eyes sparkling, the reflection of what is pure. Love is a speechless language, it is a feeling, and it is not visible unless you wish to express it. And how can you express it? There are infinite ways to express it, there are no limits to it, and no boundaries, it is just the act of giving and being happy as you give. Those kids are love, they speak words of love, they think only with love, and all they seek for, is love.

Portraits of Children from the Gaza Jarash Refugee Camp

Gaza Refugee Camp

Hell is here and now. So is Heaven. Quit worrying about hell and dreaming about heaven, as they are both present inside this very moment. Every time we fall in love, we ascend to heaven. Every time we hate, envy, or fight someone, we tumble straight into the fires of hell. Rule #25 of the Sufi Mystic Rumi – from the book The Forty Rules of Love by Elief Shafak

When we love, we always strive to become better than we are, when we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too. From the book The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

When love beckons to you, follow him, though his ways are hard and steep. And when his wings enfold you yield to him, though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you. And when he speaks to you, believe in him, though his voice may shatter your dreams as the north wind lays waste the garden. For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you. Even as he ascends to your height an caresses your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun, So shall he descend to your roots and shake them in their clinging to the earth. Like sheaves of corn he gathers you unto himself, He threshes you to make you naked. He sifts you to free you from your husks. He grinds you to whiteness, he kneads you until you are pliant; and then he assigns you to his sacred fire, that you may become sacred bread for God’s sacred feast.

All these things shall love do unto you that you may know the secrets of your heart, and in that knowledge become a fragment of life’s heart. But if in fear you would seek only love’s peace and love’s pleasure, then it is better for you that you cover your nakedness and pass out of love’s threshing-floor, into the seasonless world where you shall laugh, but not all of your laughter, and weep, but not all of your tears.

Love gives naught but itself an takes naught but from itself. Love possesses not nor would it be possessed; for love is sufficient unto love. When you love you should not say, “God is in my heart,” but rather, “I am in the heart of God.” And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course. Love has no other desire but to fulfil itself. But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires.To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night. To know the pain of too must tenderness. To love wounded by your own understanding of love; and to bleed willingly and joyfully. To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving; to rest at the noon hour and meditate lover’s ecstasy; to return home at eventide with gratitude; and then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips. From the book The Prophet by Khalil Gibran.Frankfurt

So what is love? 

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