You and I
Have so much love,
Burns like a fire,
In which we bake a lump of clay
Molded into a figure of you
And a figure of me.
Then we take both of them,
And break them into pieces,
And mix the pieces with water,
And mold again a figure of you,
And a figure of me.
I am in your clay.
Your are in my clay.
In life we share a single quilt.
In death we will share one coffin.
Source and Additional Context: Classical Chinese Poems in English
Marriage Joins Two People In The Circle Of Its Love
Marriage is a commitment to life,
the best that two people can find and bring out in each other.
It offers opportunities for sharing and growth
that no other relationship can equal.
It is a physical and an emotional joining that is promised for a lifetime.
Within the circle of its love,
marriage encompasses all of life's most important relationships.
A wife and a husband are each other's best friend,
confidant, lover, teacher, listener, and critic.
And there may come times when one partner is heartbroken or ailing,
and the love of the other may resemble
the tender caring of a parent or child.
Marriage deepens and enriches every facet of life.
Happiness is fuller, memories are fresher,
commitment is stronger,
even anger is felt more strongly,
and passes away more quickly.
Marriage understands and forgives the mistakes life is unable to avoid.
It encourages and nurtures new life, new experiences, new ways of expressing...
When two people pledge their love and care for each other in marriage,
they create a spirit unique unto themselves
which binds them closer than any spoken or written words.
Marriage is a promise,
a potential made in the hearts of two people who love each other,
and takes a lifetime to fulfill.
Walk And Touch Peace
Thich Nhat Hahn
Walk and touch peace every moment.
Walk and touch happiness every moment.
Each step brings a fresh breeze.
Each step makes a flower bloom.
Kiss the Earth with your feet.
Bring the Earth your love and happiness.
On Love (Excerpted from The Imitation of Christ, 15th Century)
by Thomas a Kempis
Love is a mighty power,
a great and complete good.
Love alone lightens every burden, and makes rough places smooth.
It bears every hardship as though it were nothing, and renders
all bitterness sweet and acceptable.
Nothing is sweeter than love,
Nothing more pleasant,
Nothing fuller or better in heaven or earth; for love is born of God.
Love flies, runs and leaps for joy.
It is free and unrestrained.
Love knows no limits, but ardently transcends all bounds.
Love feels no burden, takes no account of toil,
attempts things beyond its strength.
Love sees nothing as impossible,
for it feels able to achieve all things.
It is strange and effective
Like a living flame and a burning torch,
it surges upward and surely surmounts every obstacle.
Love is pure, tender, joyful, pleasant
strong, patient, faithful, prudent,
From Goodridge Vs. Department of Health
Chief Justice Margaret H. Marshall, MA Supreme Court
Marriage is a vital social institution. The exclusive commitment of two individuals to each other nurtures love and mutual support; it brings stability to our society. For those who choose to marry, and for their children, marriage provides an abundance of legal, financial, and social benefits. In return it imposes weighty legal, financial, and social obligations....Without question, civil marriage enhances the "welfare of the community," [is] a "social institution of the highest importance"… [and] bestows enormous private and social advantages on those who choose to marry. Civil marriage is at once a deeply personal commitment to another human being and a highly public celebration of the ideals of mutuality, companionship, intimacy, fidelity, and family.... Because it fulfills yearnings for security, safe haven, and connection that express our common humanity, civil marriage is an esteemed institution, and the decision whether and whom to marry is among life's momentous acts of self-definition.
A reading from St. Paul's letter to the Romans
Let love be without any pretense.
Avoid what is evil;
stick to what is good.
In love, let your feelings of deep affection for one another come to expression
and regard others as more important as yourself.
In the service of the Lord,
work not halfheartedly but with conscientiousness and an eager spirit.
Be joyful in hope,
persevere in hardship;
keep praying regularly;
share with any of God's holy people who are in need;
look for opportunities to be hospitable.
Bless your persecutors, never curse them, bless them.
Rejoice with others when they rejoice, and be sad with those in sorrow.
Give the same consideration to all others alike.
Pay no regard to social standing,
but meet humble people on their own terms.
Do not congratulate yourself on your own wisdom.
Never pay back evil with evil,
but bear in mind the ideal that all regard with respect.
As much as possible, and to the utmost of your ability,
be at peace with everyone.
The word of the Lord.
To love is good, too: love being difficult. For one human being to love another: that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks, the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation.
For this reason young people, who are beginners in everything, cannot yet know love: they have to learn it. With their whole being, with all their forces, gathered close about their lonely, timid, upward-beating heart, they must learn to love... to ripen, to become something... for another’s sake, it is a great exacting claim... that chooses [you] out and calls [you] to vast things.
Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now."
Marriage is in many ways a simplification of life, and it naturally combines the strengths and wills of two young people so that, together, they seem to reach farther into the future than they did before. Above all, marriage is a new task and a new seriousness, - a new demand on the strength and generosity of each partner, and a great new danger for both. The point of marriage is not to create a quick commonality by tearing down all boundaries; on the contrary, a good marriage is one in which each partner appoints the other to be the guardian of their solitude, and thus they show each other the greatest possible trust.
A merging of two people is an impossibility, and where it seems to exist, it is a hemming-in, a mutual consent that robs one party or both parties of their fullest freedom and development. But once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distances exist, a marvelous living side by side can grow up for them, if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which gives them the possibility of always seeing each other as a whole and before an immense sky. That is why this too must be the criterion for rejection or choice: whether you are willing to stand guard over someone else's solitude, and whether you are able to set this same person at the gate of your own depths, which he learns of only through what steps forth, in holiday clothing, out of the great darkness.
Life is self-transformation, and human relationships, which are an extract of life, are the most changeable of all, they rise and fall from minute to minute, and lovers are those for whom no moment is like any another. People between whom nothing habitual ever takes place, nothing that has already existed, but just what is new, unexpected, unprecedented. There are such connections, which must be a very great, an almost unbearable happiness, but they can occur only between very rich beings, between those who have become, each for his own sake, rich, calm, and concentrated; only if two worlds are wide and deep and individual can they be combined...For the more we are, the richer everything we experience is. And those who want to have a deep love in their lives must collect and save for it, and gather honey.
Excerpts from Letters to a Young Poet
Love is an Adventure
Pierre Tielhart de Chardin
Love is an adventure and a conquest.
It survives and develops like the universe itself
only by perpetual discovery.
The only right love is that between couples
whose passion leads them both,
one through the other,
to a higher possession of their being.
Put your faith in the spirit which dwells between the two of you.
You have each offered yourself to the other as a boundless field
of mutually increased sensibility.
You will meet above all by entering into
and constantly sharing
one another’s thoughts,
There alone, as you know,
in spirit, which is arrived through flesh,
you will find no disappointments, no limits.
There alone the skies are ever open for your love;
there alone lies the great road ahead.
Ultimately there comes a time when a decision must be made.
Ultimately two people who love each other must ask themselves
how much they hope for as their love grows and deepens,
and how much risk they are willing to take.
It is indeed a fearful gamble.
Because it is the nature of love to create,
a marriage itself is something which has to be created.
If we commit ourselves to one person for life this is not,
as many people think,
a rejection of freedom;
rather it demands the courage to move into all the risks of freedom,
and the risk of love which is permanent;
into that love which is not possession, but participation...
of that co-creation which is our human calling.
From The Irrational Season (Madeleine L'Engle)