Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Art Of Loving

Erich Fromm (1900-1980) was both a practicing psychoanalyst and a committed social theorist. He has written many books. Last night I was reading his book The Art Of Loving. Its a small size book but every single word of it needs attention and special consideration. The concepts and clarity about LOVE is main point and focus of the love. He has very rightly made his introductory point:
The first thing we have to learn is that love is an art, just as living is an art; if we want to learn how to love we must proceed in the same way we have to proceed if we want to learn any other art. Maybe here lies the answer to the question of why people in our culture try so rarely to learn this art, in spite of their obvious failures: in spite of the deep-seated craving for love, almost everything else is considered to be more important than love: success, prestige, money, power - almost all our energy is used for learning of how to achieve these aims, and almost none to learn the art of loving.
In last and fourth chapter of the book he says
in order to practise an art, including the art of love, one has to keep in mind certain general requirements. As far as love is concerned, discipline, concentration, patience are needed.
 I was amazed to know his views that one should not FALL IN LOVE but should STAND FOR LOVE. Love is not falling but standing.
Here is a list of his great work:
  • Escape from Freedom (US), The Fear of Freedom (UK) (1941)
  • Man for himself, an inquiry into the psychology of ethics (1947)
  • Psychoanalysis and Religion (1950)
  • Forgotten language; an introduction to the understanding of dreams, fairy tales, and myths (1951)
  • The Sane Society (1955)
  • The Art of Loving (1956)
  • Sigmund Freud's mission; an analysis of his personality and influence (1959)
  • Psychoanalysis and Zen Buddhism (1960)
  • May Man Prevail? An inquiry into the facts and fictions of foreign policy (1961)
  • Marx's Concept of Man (1961)
  • Beyond the Chains of Illusion: my encounter with Marx and Freud (1962)
  • The Dogma of Christ and Other Essays on Religion, Psychology and Culture (1963)
  • The Heart of Man, its genius for good and evil (1964)
  • Socialist Humanism (1965)
  • You Shall Be as Gods: a radical interpretation of the Old Testament and its tradition (1966)
  • The Revolution of Hope, toward a humanized technology (1968)
  • The Nature of Man (1968) 
  • The Crisis of Psychoanalysis (1970)
  • Social character in a Mexican village; a sociopsychoanalytic study (Fromm & Maccoby) (1970)
  • The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness (1973)
  • To Have or to Be? (1976)
  • Greatness and Limitation of Freud's Thought (1979)
  • On Disobedience and other essays (1984)
  • The Art of Being (1993)
  • The Art of Listening (1994)
  • On Being Human (1997)
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