In what ways is love a behavior? An attitude? Emotion? Idea? What are the different types and meanings of love? Let us briefly indulge our curiosity before enjoying another Valentine’s Day with significant others, dear family, good friends, fellow human beings, and even music for music’s sake, pets, and strong coffee!
Martin Luther King, Jr. advanced racial equality, elimination of poverty, and reversal of a militaristic state through nonviolent civil disobedience. This moral means towards moral ends requires us to realize our intimate interrelatedness, and to love each human being regardless of our physical appearance, the institutions of which we are a part, what someone believes, how we behave, or any other attribute which propagates an “us” versus “them.” How can you love the person when you hate the deed? In honor of this persistent and urgent philosophy, here are King’s own words on the issue from a 1963 speech at the Western Michigan University. Consider the political and sociological intentions, as well as the possible personal and clinical applications, of this call to action.