better to hope than to love
Love. It’s the greatest good we have as humans. Most of us chase it all our lives, and sometimes even find it. But in the nature of these things, finding and keeping is not the same thing. I wrote elsewhere about different kinds of love, but romantic love is the one the songs, films and books mostly hold up as the ultimate.
We say love is forever and yet we know it is not. We enter into contracts and exchange rings that symbolise an unending circle. And we quietly build exits and escape clauses.
We hope and pray that love will last, but objectively everything that has a beginning has an end, as The Matrix Revolutions had it. It was a remark by Jake Lira of @thecreative.cafe that got me wondering about the wrong turns and detours we make in search of The One. He asked: is love ever a mistake?
Perhaps there are no mistakes, only progress we can’t see at the time.
Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.
If we look at life this way, it gives us some hope. When things seem to be going wrong, we are simply taking an unexpected turn on the road of life. Those footprints cannot be erased anyway. We can’t deny our past; we can only make peace with it.
With this in mind, we are able to look back at past experiences and take what can be learned from them. Some loves are like flowers; beautiful and doomed, and all the more precious because they are ephemeral. What we should treasure is not this idea of romantic love, in whichever way we live it, but the capacity to feel love not once, but many times.
As long as we are able to try again, the possibility of grasping love remains. And the emotion that keeps us going in its absence is hope.
Hope. It is the quintessential human delusion, simultaneously the source of your greatest strength, and your greatest weakness.
The Architect, The Matrix Reloaded (2003) The Wachowskis
As Pandora found, when all is lost, hope is the tiny flame that lights the darkness. And the deeper the dark, the brighter it shines.