Now progressives will say our society has moved beyond the idea that marriage is only between a man and a woman to have children – to – the idea that love is all that matters. So for the progressive, their moral compass is the feeling of love. But what about when you fall out of that feeling? AND is feelings the core of the definition of love? The English word for love has so many meaning based on the context: “I love my mom” or “I love my cat” or “I love my sister” or “I’m in love with my fiance” or “I love my wife” or “I love my best friend” or “I love tacos”!?
My point? Love means something different in every one of those circumstances.
In ancient languages there are multiple words for love, each with a different usage. When we think of being “in love” the ancient Greeks would use the term Eros, from which we derive erotic. This is the puppy-dog love, a sexual love, an infatuation, and this is very much feelings based. Everyone who has ever felt this love has likely experienced this love consistently for about 12-18 months in a relationship, and after that the feeling is fleeting, and often less and less. When a couple has been together for a couple years, they need to build their relationship on something more than Eros or their relationship will end.
Another word used by the Greeks is Stergo, which means a parent to child love. This kind of bond I had with my mom was strong, which made it hard when she died. A piece of me died with her and nothing can fill that void in the same way. Similarly, I have this bond with each of my kids and it would make me want to die for them. Stergo also makes me want to create the best home environment for them between myself and my wife so that my kids’ home-life is stable. I want them to have what I never had as a kid; my greatest longing as a kid was for my mom and dad to be together and love each other. If you love your kids, you will listen to me here and strive to work things through with the biological parent of your child.
The final two words in Greek for love are Agape and Phileo. You have heard of the meaning of Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love. The idea is there is a unique love between brothers or sisters or best friends. A camaraderie between people that is lighthearted and long suffering.
Agape is similar, and the best illustration is the definition given in the New Testament: love is patient, kind, it does not envy, or boast, it is not self-seeking, it keeps no record of wrongs, it does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth, it always protects, always trusts, always perseveres, love never fails. An example Jesus gave was of someone laying down their life for a friend, this is true love.
Agape and Phileo are necessary for a marriage to work. Agape, Phileo and Stergo are necessary for family to work. And where these expressions of love exist, you find traditional marriage and family. When Eros is the basis of marriage, you find chaos, brokenness, and hurting / angry children and parents.
Am I stating one morality is better than another? Yes. Thus conservative-ism is the only actually loving solution to moral problems related to marriage, children, single-parenting, and family.
To put it simply, don’t have sex until you are married and only in marriage that can make a baby that is 100% both of yours. And work to express Stergo, Agape, and Phileo in your family.
Check out part three about the bathroom laws.