- Paperback: 319 pages
- Publisher: Ignatius Press; Revised edition (April 1, 1993)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0898704456
- ISBN-13: 978-0898704457
- Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 1 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 102 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #83,770 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Love and Responsibility Paperback – April 1, 1993
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I have been married for almost 10 years now and I still go to it for reference. It isn't a light/easy read, you have to sit down and concentrate (at least that is how it was for me), but it is very helpful in this world where love is so warped and misrepresented. This is definitely one of my favorite books to recommend for marriage related topics!
An idea that the book left me, is that this is an important thing to realize, specially on these times, as we tend to believe that sensuality (mostly by men) or affectivity are the norths for love (or are in fact love, instead of just the subjective profile of love), not knowing that the objective profile of love (which is the one that should guide and correct) is in fact, the affirmation of the value of the person. Which in summary is to give the person the dignity that it deserves. This can only be achieved by virtue (chastity, temperance, self mastery, etc), and virtue can only grow by our spirituality. Only love virtue is truly love.
The end of these virtues is not celibacy, it is the ability to love purely, and therefore truly.
Love is not a feeling or an instinct it is a decision, as our will needs to decide toward it, as if it doesn't, it decides away from it.
Virtue needs to grow as we grow spiritually, and this is, because love only reaches its level objectively, through virtue. Love is a fruit of the Spirit (and remembering that only God is good) and Love is about goodness (love is of God as God is love), therefore virtue has to grow when we grow spiritually, as love in us (goodness in us), should be growing. Virtue is the way to act that goodness.
This work is not about NFP technology but about living a good life as a sexual person. Too often JPII is read as a justification for a particular "natural" sexual praxis. I would challenge readers to consider rather that the ideal sexual life presented here is rather *based on grace* actively opening a way to union--in which each considers the other first. Grace builds upon nature--to heal, perfect, and elevate it. Without grace, this work will read like just Mt. 5--as another pietistic reason to despair of the greatness of our call to love as God loves.
I've read both English translations now many times, and this new translation (by a man formed in the same intellectual tradition as Wojtyla) captures well and precisely his profound and penetrating thought.
The included article (added as an appendix) explaining more clearly the dynamic of self-giving spousal love is a great addition, and clarifies more fully the central concept of the work.