Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

If love is the answer, what was the question?

Recently, I noticed this question: If love is the answer, what was the question? It intrigued me to find that question. After some contemplation, I answered with the following question: What’s the meaning of life? The ancient Roman philosopher Titus Pomponius Atticus (110 BC-32 BC) seems to agree with me.

source, see #33

As also mentioned in earlier blogs, our present-day word Love covers various types of love.

The ancient Greek used these terms instead of love:

  1. agape: divine love
  2. eros: romantic love
  3. philautia: loving yourself, self-esteem
  4. philia: friendship
  5. storge: parental love
  6. xenia: hospitality to strangers

Some lesser known other terms are:

  1. erotoropia or ludus: playful, flirtatious love
  2. mania: obsessive love
  3. meraki: doing with absolute passion, devotion
  4. pragma: enduring love between elderly
  5. other words, like love for art and nature

The Atticus saying makes (much) more sense once you realize these (many) types of love. How can you even search for love, if there are so many types of love to be found? You can only search for something, once you (exactly) know what it is (eg, lost key). You need insight for looking out.

Is Atticussearch of life easier than his search of love? I think, feel and believe it is not. Most of us just go with the flow (eg, job, house, children). Actually, that might well be the best solution. Once you start wondering about existential questions, like the meaning of Life, then things get complex.

In my view, the meaning of Life = living a meaningful life; see my blogs of 2016 and 2022. Helping others will (usually) result in a meaningful life. Why? Love (eg, philia, xenia) is the only selfless belief; see my related blogs of 2017. Also see my 2015 blogs Why we are here and Our individual purpose.

In my view, you should never ask a question if you don’t want to hear its answer; see my blogs of 2019 and 2020. This adage also applies to existential questions. Spiritual journeys are not without danger (eg, 5 Risks of a Spiritual Path). Going with the Flow is less dangerous and less rewarding.

Some quotes by (anonymous) Shunya (author’s pen name, meaning empty):

  • “Enlightenment is death before death, death of everything you are not. And a seeker’s journey is like a soldier climbing a hilltop in the shower of bullets, not like a tourist trekking a hill.”
  • “Your questions are useless if your mind makes them as easily as a bubble-blower makes bubbles. A question should burn like fire. It should take you to a journey.”

Get A Life / What’s the meaning (1989) by Soul II Soul
band, lyrics, video, Wiki-band, Wiki-song

[Verse 1]
This thing called life
Know what’s the meaning of the line
(Tell me)

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless in quotes or stated otherwise.


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