Oct 04 2022 • 4 min read

I’m reading Bell Hooks’ “All About Love: New Visions”. First off, I’m floored by how good this book is. I’m only a few chapters in, but it’s exposed just how little I know about love.

When we reveal ourselves to our partner and find that this brings healing rather than harm, we make an important discovery — that an intimate relationship can provide a sanctuary from the world of facades, a sacred space where we can be ourselves as we are … This kind of unmasking — speaking our truth, sharing our inner struggles, and revealing our raw edges — is sacred activity, which allows two souls to meet and touch more deeply.

That worldview-reorienting quote is by John Welwood.

John Welwood’s quote reminded me of something I learnt recently. The Igbo word for “Love” is “Ifunanya”. My Igbo sucks, but I think it loosely translates to “To see with your eye”. I take it to mean “To see”.

To love is to see. I cannot describe just how beautiful that meaning is. It is mot juste.

Bell Hooks doesn’t think love is a feeling. She believes it’s an action. With my new-found working definition for love, i.e. to see, I cannot help but agree. Love is being seen for all that I am. It is a sanctuary where I can be unabashedly raw and vulnerable. It is sacred grounds where my flaws, struggles, and truths are in full view without fear of judgement or reprisal. Love is where I am true. Love is where I am revealed.