We use the word love to express many different feelings: To love a country is to feel deeply attached to the country. To love tango is to be fascinated by and addicted to the dance. To love a child is to adore him/her. To love a friend is to appreciate and feel agreeable, comfortable and close to that person. To love someone with superior intelligence, talent, character, or physical attributes is to hold great respect, admiration and reverence for that person. To love someone of the opposite gender is to be sexually attracted to and want to marry and have children with that person.
None of the above alone completely expresses the true meaning of love. True love is a combination of all. It is the deepest appreciation, attraction, attachment, admiration, adoration, veneration and affection for someone for whom you are willing to give up everything. Love is altruist. It has no ego and pride. It is patient, kind and generous. It trusts, surrenders, devotes, gives, complies, supports, yields, tolerates, endures, forgives and protects, just like in tango. However, for love to work, it must be reciprocal. Love is a relationship, in which each partner must do his/her part in order to bring out the best of the other, just like in tango, too. The synergy of love will cease if the interactions stop; therefore, it should not be taken for granted.
Another truth about love is: men and women have different expectations of love. Men are strong and goal-oriented. For men, love means to provide and give - more in a physical than emotional sense perhaps, and that is also how men expect from love. A man cannot feel loved if he is not appreciated, respected and revered. Women, on the other hand, are more delicate and feeling-oriented. For women, love means being adored, pampered, protected, and particularly being romantically, adventurously and heroically pursued. A woman cannot feel loved if her fantasy and emotional needs are not met. This difference between men and women often is a source of problem in relationships, and in tango as well. (See Activity and Passivity in Tango.) In other words, men need to learn to be more romantic, gentle and attentive in their relationship with women, and women need to learn to be more appreciative, respectful and agreeable in their relationship with men. Men and women are different, and they play different roles in love. (See The Psychology of Tango and The Gender Roles in Tango.)
The ability to love is God's best gift to humanity, which makes us better husbands, wives, parents, friends, tango partners, citizens and human beings. Imagine a world in which people all love and know how to love each other, in comparison to the cold world in which we are living. (See Tango Is the search of a Dream.) Love is not only a feeling, but also a skill that needs to be studied, taught and learned. Of all the skills essential to a healthy, functional, stable and harmonious society, love perhaps is the most important one. This is true in tango also. (See Tango Is a Relationship.)
Unfortunately, our education completely ignores this. American schools are dominated by capitalism, individualism and feminism that teach young men and women to be greed, individualistic, independent, self-seeking, strong-minded, competitive, aggressive, dissident and rebellious. The results are disastrous. According to an internal Department of Homeland Security report dated March 1, 2017, most foreign-born terrorists operating in the United States do not become radicalized until several years after entering the country. This means our own culture has contributed to the radicalization of the young minds. This culture is also the root cause of the dissension, disunity, hostility, extremism, polarization, antagonism, uncooperativeness and dysfunction in our government, and the rapacity, intolerance, hatred, tension, brokenness, divorce, crime and violence in our society today.
In American history, nothing has done more harms to our society than narrow-minded radical ideologies that teach people to be greed, selfish, disagreeable, resentful and antagonistic. This country is desperately in need of love, and tango, a dance that teaches people to love. (See The Art of Love.)