10 Theses on Love from Fr. Jósef Augustyn

22.09.201515:58 Fr Jósef Augustyn SJ presented, in Lviv, translations of his new books, among which is «There’s No Fear in Love». We direct your attention to the main theses proposed by Fr. Augustyn on love, relationship and marriage.

1. Love is self-giving and sacrificial. We all strive to be loved but do not think whether we ourselves give love to others. The source of love is God. A human being receives love from God and shares it with neighbors. The more one receives, the more one is capable of giving. And the more one gives, the more one is capable of receiving back. In order to give love to others, one needs to be in a close relationship to God, to open up and trust in His love.

2. Only God’s love is unmerited. Love from people is to be merited. God’s love is received by us as a gift and a grace. Human love requires certain actions and skills. Aspiring for the love of others, we have to notice and accomplish wishes of those with whom we live or want to establish relationships with, as well as to consider their needs and desires.

3. Love cannot be demanded. Love is freedom. Whether or not one is in a romantic relationship or is already married, making rigids demands to one’s partner shows a egocentric behavior that prevents another from freedom and autonomy. Fr. J. Augustyn remarks, «In claiming love from others, in making efforts to make them love us, there’s always a certain moment of manipulation, pressure or even violence».

4. One cannot give love to others if one is not capable of receiving it. Many people make mistakes when they, ignoring their own needs of love, try to be dedicated and devoted in serving others. The consequence of such «self-giving service» can be spiritual emptiness followed by depression and crisis. People cannot help others without letting themselves be  helped too, since a human being is not the source of love.

5. Love requires hard work. Establishing relationships, creating a family, raising children, and, especially, having a close relationship to God requires daily efforts and work from oneself.  Love cannot be purchased for money or received for nothing.

6. Love gives opportunities. Being in love is God’s gift that motivates young people to change. For the sake of a relationship with one’s beloved, one is capable of giving up harmful habits, getting rid of one’s imperfections and developing one’s abilities. Young people often waste this gift without realizing its value. 

7. Love is growing within a person – from the moment of coming into this world to a ripe old age. If a child, while growing-up, receives, in due manner, love from parents, teachers, or pastors, his or her ability to love increases, and, as an adult, he or she will be able to embody the gift of love in daily life.

8. When God is in first place, everything else is in its own place. How to control one’s own sexuality? By not starting struggles with it, but by doing good deeds. The more good deeds one does, the less time is left for the passions. One should not think that sexual sins are the gravest ones. It is the sixth commandment but not the first one. Sexual purity is the purity of the heart. Those who care about purity of the heart and do good deeds can master their weakness.

9. Human love requires compromise. Why do marriages fall apart? Because people can be stubborn by sticking to their own convictions or arguing about quotidian issues. In marriage, one should be able to waive, to renounce one’s own views, to discuss complicated situations. Before getting married, it is important to think if there is a compromise between the fiancé and fiancée and how it can be reached. Relations in marriage are relations of partnership.

10. Investing in love will be returned hundredfold. We can get used to a small income and modest way of living. But it is hard for us to put up with the lack of married love, family concord and mutual respect. In pursuing careers and material comfort, people often neglect their home affairs and relations with their wife and children. And later, they reap bitter fruit of incomprehension, depression, offences and betrayal. Young people should prepare carefully for the Holy Sacrament of Marriage, since the Church only consecrates their union while the responsibility for its establishment and observance lays on those who intend to marry.

To learn more, just read the book «There’s No Fear in Love».

Marta Kalyniak

10 тез про любов від о. Юзефа Августина


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