Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Love Should be a Verb not a Noun

A columnist in the Kyeongyang Catholic magazine writes on the importance of leisure in our lives, and urges us to find time for leisure and to enjoy it now. Written by a member of the Seoul Diocesan Office for Family Matters, he quotes Tolstoy: "The most precious time is now, the most important thing is what I am doing now, the most important person is the one I am talking to now.

The columnist would like to change the words of the quote somewhat to: The most important time is the time with my spouse, the most important thing is working with my spouse, and the most important person in my life is my spouse.

Most would agree with this assessment but finding time to put it into practice is a problem. From the time of Aristotle we have heard that to live most fully is to be fully at leisure.  We work to make time for leisure. The columnist points out that the origin of the English word 'school' comes from the Greek to the  Latin word 'schola,' meaning leisure. The word was used to describe the relationship of the teacher and student in the learning process, which was to be done in an atmosphere of leisure.

He divides time into work time, family time, and leisure time. When they complement each other we have, he says, the best situation: harmonious relationships. Spending quality time with the family and spouse is necessary for a satisfactory family life. It is also a great help in living a healthy life, more so than exercise or going to a health club.

The columnist feels that one of the first things to be done in order to spend more time with your spouse is to control the time watching TV.  We can cheaply watch drama, sports, entertainment, news, education, among other things, but  concludes that with TV the bad points exceed the good ones. We are ignorant of the negative points, he says, because we are not familiar with the long range  studies of  the effects of watching TV.

Koreans spend, on average, slightly more than 3 hours watching TV. Which means that persons living, let's say, 80 years would spend 10 years watching TV. To increase the love in the family, he recommends not watching TV while eating, when in bed, and when talking to family members.  Love is not a noun, he says, but a verb--the doing of something. We do not need a ton of knowledge to know love and its effect on our lives, only a gram of action would be sufficient.

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