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How to complete your love – 4 realms of heart

4 realms of heart

This heart matures through the experience of loving and being loved. The human heart is to grow and expand through 4 realms of heart. Namely, we learn to love first as children, developing the virtues of filial piety. Then, we learn to love as siblings and learn the virtues of solidarity and sharing. Third, we practice the conjugal love, where the paramount virtue is committed fidelity. Fourth, through practicing parental love, we develop the virtues of unconditional love. [1]

The first of the 4 realms of heart is to love our parents. The baby develops a strong attachment to its mother, who nurtures her child. If the mother is deeply connected to her husband, then the child will feel proud of having its origin in the love between these two people. This is important for self-esteem. The child should feel that it was not just born from genitors, but expected by a man and a woman in love. The child is the witness of their love story.

Later, as an adult, he will have a natural desire to create a loving couple, and live the same love story that gave birth to him/her. It requires both a father and a mother to raise a child.  The first season of love is the vertical, ascendant love. We have only one father and one mother.

Based on this vertical, ascendant love, the child will develop other bonds, by loving the siblings. It will help the heart develop horizontally, as we learn to share, to cooperate and to develop mutualism. At a certain level of our emotional development, we grow as much through horizontal stimulation as through the vertical guidance of the parents. Therefore, playful and recreational activities are important. Families should find the right balance between educational and collective activities for the whole household and moments of high quality spent with each single child.

4 realms of heart – conjugal love
Photo: Dominic Sansotta / Unsplash. Cropped

The next season of the heart is the experience of conjugal love. It is the horizontal love shared exclusively with a person of the opposite sex, within the bond of marriage. This is the only form of love which includes sexual relationships. Sex is given a paramount importance in our culture, but human sexuality without true love has a bitter taste, and leaves people with various traumas. The physical traumas and risks of casual sex for health are almost benign, compared to the psychological effects.

Unificationism says that human sexuality is central in human life and in culture, and that it should be talked about frankly.  Friedrich Nietzsche emphasized the art of saying love, and not just making love. ‘‘When marrying you should ask yourself this question: do you believe you are going to enjoy talking with this woman into your old age? Everything else in a marriage is transitory, but most of the time that you’re together will be devoted to conversation.”

Our sex education should start when we train our young boys and girls to speak and act respectfully with each other, and seeing the whole person in the opposite sex, not just the physical appearance.

The love story of human beings is completed with the fourth of the 4 realms of heart, namely the experience of parental love. It is the deepest and most unconditional form of love. This vertical descending love can give its full potential within the framework of a family, when the father and mother have already matured in the experience of being a loving son or daughter, a loving brother or sister, a loving husband or wife.

Text: Laurent Ladouce

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[1] For a good introduction of these topics, read True Family Values, Third Edition, FFWPU, 2006, ISBN 1-931166-25-0,