Wednesday, October 05, 2005

C.S. Lewis and Love

I'm trying to write a story for “Twentysomething by Twentysomething,” a contest Random House is putting on with the intention of creating a book of nonfictional short stories written by, you guessed it, twentysomethings. To get my brain turning, I've been going through old notebooks. One of these notebooks said on one page: “Greek has many words to qualify love.”

Americans say “It's Greek to me” when they don't understand something. Maybe this is why I don't understand love. I often don't feel equipped with the words to describe what I'm feeling or not feeling or wanting to feel.

So I thought I would sit down and try to write a story about that, since it is one of about three things twenty-somethings seemed to be focused on and I could think of specific instances and situations that I could write about. If Greek language is to love what Eskimo language is to snow, this could be really fun.

I started with a little bit of research, and found the Greek language actually has four words for love...Fewer than I had hoped, but still, I thought, this is a great way to organize my story. I can write a nonfictional account of these four types of love in my life. Five seconds of research later, I found out that C.S. Lewis had already done it in a book called The Four Loves. Nothing I could write could possibly be wholly original, but it is disappointing to have an idea, only to turn around and find that someone had the same one already.

Of course, everything is about these four loves: Agape or christian love, Philia or the love between friends, Storge or familial love, and Eros or attraction. Maybe I don't have to focus on a theme, intend a message, or know what the hell I'm talking about. Maybe that's what being in your twenties is really all about. And I could tell that story in a million ways.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i am a student and currently am learning about the kinds of love you have wrote about and just wondering what kind of love would be romantic love