I've just started reading "all about love: New Visions" by bell hooks. It's my first time reading anything by her, and I'm very much enjoying it.
Her first task in the book is to find a good working definition of love. She rejects the notion, popular among many authors, that love is indefinable. Instead, she finds a satisfactory definition in M. Scott Peck's The Road Less Traveled, where he defines love as the will to extend one's self for the purpose nurturing one's own or another's spiritual growth." Boy does that up the ante on this thing called love.
It strikes me that this definition of love really fits with unschooling. When you reject an authoritarian, coercive style of parenting (mostly, in theory anyways, when not caught in your own knee-jerk responses), what you have left is a bunch of people living together with different and sometimes conflicting needs. So you just have to solve the problem of ensuring everyone's needs, including personal or spiritual growth, are met.
It also strikes me, in reflecting on other relationships in my life, that they don't meet the standard bell hooks proposes. I think it takes a big, whole self to be able to extend oneself in the way that hooks and Peck call for, and so many of us are too wounded to do it.
Imagine if everyone were healed enough to love properly, though. I've been to a few Resilience Festival events this week, put on by Transition Guelph, and I've just this moment realized that that may be the very thing they're working towards. Huh.