I Love You (But Please Note Conditions & Limitations).

Via Jennifer K. Jones
on Sep 27, 2010
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Love: (As defined by Wikipedia) is the emotion of strong affection and personal attachment. In philosophical context, love is a virtue representing all of human kindness, compassion, and affection. In religious context, love is not just a virtue, but the basis for all being, and the foundation for all divine law.

The word love can refer to a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes, ranging from generic pleasure (“I loved that meal”) to intense interpersonal attraction (“I love my wife”). “Love” can also refer specifically to the passionate desire and intimacy of romantic love, to the sexual love of eros (cf. Greek words for love), to the emotional closeness of familial love, or to the platonic love that defines friendship,to the profound oneness or devotion of religious love.This diversity of uses and meanings, combined with the complexity of the feelings involved, makes love unusually difficult to consistently define, even compared to other emotional states.”

Each person has their own definition, weight, view, guidelines and context for love. As illustrated in the above definition, the meaning and usage can vary from a mere generic expression of pleasure to the most intense and passionate declaration of emotional connection.

How can we have one single word that encompasses such a breadth of emotional states?

One could argue that this emotion is so abstract and dynamic that it is impossible to pinpoint; however, those who have loved purely and to their core know without question that it is as real and tangible as anything else in our perceived reality.

What I found most interesting in the definition, and have struggled with in my personal recognition of love, is the range of purity represented within this emotion.

Some people are quick to love and just as quick to let the love fade, thus often granting the emotion less weight. Others tend to be very frugal and guarded with their emotion in fear of getting hurt. These perspectives on love share a common thread of conditional and self-serving interests.

There are certain emotional states that masquerade as love, and probably have an element of love within, however are hindered and tainted beyond recognition by conditional variables: love grounded by attachment and by lust. Both selfish and swaying on conditions… and both a recipe for inescapable pain and suffering; which, then, completely negates the whole purpose for loving.

That being said, the purest form of love thus would be completely altruistic, unconditional, and pervasive. As idealistic and unrealistic as that foundation may sound, this quality and purity rushes into one’s being the moment eye contact is made with their newborn child. I know from experience that I never experienced pure love until the day I gave birth to my first son.

I finally understood that love has nothing to do with reciprocation, gratification, and limitations. I began to reevaluate my existing relationships using this new found realization as a benchmark. This included relationships with my husband, parents, extended family, friends, pet…. and every person I encounter along my path.

My goal:  If I was going to love, I was going to love purely and completely.

As I examined and assessed, I found that the greatest factor was acceptance – an open acceptance of oneself and others.

From these realizations, an amazing occurrence then began to take shape – my love began to grow and expand.  The fear associated with being hurt, being disappointed, of loss and vulnerability diminished. The foundation to this emotion shifted to a sublime and passionate appreciation for these beings in their own dynamic and unique state, completely independent of other factors, perceptions or projections from me.

So, my job as the person radiating the love, is to compassionately understand them, do everything in my power to end their suffering, and to be an aid in their pursuit of happiness.  There is absolutely no room for fear or pain in this equation for without imposed requirements, expectations, judgment, and need for reciprocation, one is free to love in the purest form.

This is how I love my children, family, friends, and is my ongoing practice for every other being I encounter.  And, as stated so succinctly in the above definition, it truly is ‘the basis for all being.’

May we all pervasively radiate in altruistic love, free from the constraints of conditions and limitations, and open to all beings on the basis of absolute acceptance, genuine compassion and the pursuit of complete understanding.


About Jennifer K. Jones

Jennifer K. Jones is the owner of a multi-media marketing firm, yoga instructor and practitioner, holistic health practitioner, writer and artist. She is the mother of three incredible little boys & an amazing baby girl, all of whom will hopefully grow up to live their passions with gratitude, radiate and spread pure, unconditional love to every being that they encounter, and thrive within the vast openness of their wildest dreams... and Jennifer is striving daily to lead them by example. Contact Jennifer at her website.


30 Responses to “I Love You (But Please Note Conditions & Limitations).”

  1. Dylan says:

    I love this, Jen. I love your Goal very much also. We are all here to learn how to Love purely, perhaps. And the heart and head and groin can all truly expand as we open up to a wider, freer, rawer, realer concept and practice of Love. Of course, practices such as meditation and YOGA can assist greatly in this growth. You know, this all reminds me of a poem I once wrote too…

    New Growth

    If you want to see love grow
    then plant the seed in your heart
    and water it with Kindness give
    it plenty of direct sunlight don't
    forget to feed it Truth and watch
    it blossom beautiful and pure
    then give it away to others…

    Namaste, Jen. Much Love and Gratitude to you.

    -The Mad Yogi Poet

  2. helene_rose says:

    Hi Jennifer,
    I enjoyed reading your beautifully expressed and highly reflective words.
    Helene Rose

  3. JenniferKH says:

    Thank you, Dylan! And such a great poem!

  4. JenniferKH says:

    Thank you so much for your kind comment, Helene. Much gratitude and love…

  5. JenniferKH says:

    Much gratitude for the kind comment, Helene!

  6. Love "my job as the person radiating the love, is to compassionately understand them, do everything in my power to end their suffering, and to be an aid in their pursuit of happiness. " – what a wonderful life motto – I'm adopting it as my own.

  7. lindsayyoga says:

    Beautiful and deeply inspiring … thank you for sharing your love. 🙂

  8. JenniferKH says:

    Wonderful! Thank you, Donna.

  9. JenniferKH says:

    And thank you for your kind words – much gratitude and love…

  10. Ben_Ralston says:

    Fantastic article – and not an easy subject to write about! Sharing…
    If all goes well I too will soon have that moment of eye contact with my newborn child. I know it will also expand my capacity to love… I can't wait!
    Nice work Jen, with *love*

  11. Kevin Knebl says:

    Thanks for the great post, Jennifer! You are a blessing in my life and many others lives.


  12. Katie says:

    I just wanted to thank you because I found this to be such a great reminder for evaluation of my current perspectives on love in my life. To look at any attachments I may be holding in sync. Unconditional love sounds simple, is simple, but at times (if we look deeper) we'll see that love may require some additional reflection and practice on our part!

    Thank you for sharing the love with us.


  13. JenniferKH says:

    Thank you so very much, Kevin. You are an absolute blessing in my life as well, my friend.

    Sending much love ~

  14. JenniferKH says:

    Katie – I greatly appreciate your wonderfully thoughtful comment. Yes, it's very easy to love without evaluating the foundation and assessing the purity. We tend to let our egos get in the way of really loving people. As long as we know what struggles to overcome, and can mentally grasp the concept of unconditional and altruistic love, we can continually strive to love deeper and stronger… could there be a more worthy endeavor?! 🙂

    Much love to you, dear,

  15. matt says:

    jennifer- I love you.

  16. JenniferKH says:

    Thanks for spreading the love, Matt 🙂

  17. _Jo_ says:

    Thank you for your sense of observation and your ability to translate into word.

    I was the slow one and she was the quick one.
    She though it wasn't in love with her, cos I didn't say her all the time "I love you" but I show it to her in many differents ways and my love for her grow and expend with time despite circumstances and mistakes.
    I knew it, since I meet her and I know it even more now, after she left me for someone else and this reading, I was deeply and truly in love with her.

    I will try, for the futur to keep all this words, this (painfull) experience and whise advice to be a bit more open, if that will happen again!

    Thank you again for sharing your experience.

  18. Dylan says:

    Wow. The LOVE is truly spreading!


  19. JenniferKH says:

    And thank you for sharing your experience, Jo. If you have no expectations or requirements of the other person and simply just love them for who they are as a being, then what do you have to lose by being open, right? There should be no pain or fear associated with loving purely… and letting them know.

    All the best to you, my friend.

  20. JenniferKH says:

    Love & compassion need to permeate, infiltrate, and supersaturate the world 🙂 People inherently know that it IS "the basis for all being."

  21. Michael Odom says:

    Thank you, Jennefer, for sharing your heart! i really am glad that I read this today. No doubt, it will change my perceptions! Love doesn't just appear. It must be cultivated. And that's my goal for the day!

  22. […] Jennifer Hunt’s I Love You, But Please Note the Conditions. […]

  23. lisaallthingsvegan says:

    i just caught this article because of it being on the "best list" and i get why it was on there. i'm so glad i read this, it touched me deeply and reminded me of what i strive for in all of my interactions/ relationships.
    thank you!!

  24. […] Don’t frown, lonely person, I understand. I know what it feels like to be alone and stand next to a beaming couple on the train. I’ve been there. But even in my loneliest moments, soft beaming couples with their interwoven limbs and their tender eyes inspired me, not irritated me. Beauty, as well as obscenity, are in the eyes of the beholder. […]

  25. […] There’s friend, yoga instructor, Zen Goddess, jewelry designer and fellow EJ columnist Jennifer Jones-Hunt, who reminded me what True Love really means. There’s friend, yoga instructor, and fellow EJ […]

  26. JenniferKH says:

    Thank you, Michael, for the wonderful comment.

  27. JenniferKH says:

    Thank you for your kind message, Edmund. Namaste, my friend.

  28. […] I fully support the acceptance of romping intercourse. Romping, wild, earth-shattering, swinging-off-the-chandelier intercourse. Romping intercourse with love. […]

  29. Amy E says:

    It's tough to do, but it is worth it. Trust, forgiveness, acceptance, patience, empathy, and altruism are key characteristics to make this work.