Faith Analysis of Love

Spiritual vs. Romantic Love

The irony being, that spiritual love when applied to our romantic relationships ends up leading us to an unsanitary spiritual existence.

Romantic love is a lofty goal for a man or a woman and very important to define, because in defining it we will be compelled to define all the values which make its achievement possible.  

What more practical incentive does one need to uphold their values than the potential for romantic love and its corollary of sexual fulfillment? Morality without its corresponding reward is a morality which gives man irrational goals, because its ultimate goal is your failure.  The morality of romantic love has only one goal, your total success in every venue of life.

The self preservation of a man’s morality depends on his perception of love and intimacy, for intimacy to be experienced properly, it cannot be perceived as only a duty within marriage or an act of depravity outside of it. But rather, it should be viewed as a reward for the perfection of one’s duties and for the perfection of one’s nature as a moral being.

If you have a desire apart from moral values, then you are confusing desires with depravity.  And in doing so you will be sentencing yourself to a life where pleasure will depend on the limitations that sensory experiences can deliver.

When your standard of value becomes exclusively physical, you will not be able to experience pleasure except through more and more forceful sensory experiences.  This is the root cause of the perverted forms of sexual behaviors we are witnessing today. 

Intimacy void of values gives an indication about a sexual capacity that will end up being premature or make the person increasingly more perverted over time.  The antidote to such degeneracy is romantic love, properly defined.

What is romantic love?

Romantic love is a love which requires the union of two confident individuals whose confidence is not acquired through their loving soul mates.  Romantic love is judgmental; it’s an emotional response to your life partner whom you recognize through your ability to recognize your own values in action.

Romantic love must be earned, not by seducing another, but by making yourself worthy of seduction, and by making yourself someone worthy of the greatest reward that life has to offer – True love. 

The aspiration for romantic love and sex is an aspiration towards morality, spirituality and closeness to God.  And so we are left with this strange reunion where romantic love, when put into practice, develops all the features of being spiritual.

This is the nature of nature; and this is God’s prescription.  This is reinforced by Islam’s celebration of our practical sexual needs,  not as something carnal,  but as something  glorious.  It is something which is of the utmost priority in a man’s life.

Why?  Because it is the means to the highest spiritual end.  Romantic love is a goal worth fighting for.  So let us heed the proverb:  let love come last, after the lesson is learned, for love like all things, must be earned!

First published: July 2017

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