Agape: In Search of Universal Love
from the novel, The Lodging for the Rose
Rolf. A. F. Witzsche

Story 6 - Shared Roses.
page 33

      "I had hoped to spare you that hurt," I said to her.
      She squeezed my hand as we smiled at each other. "Let there always be peace between us?" she said, speaking in a happy voice as she embraced me. She followed the embrace up with a kiss. "And let this peace not be a dull and inactive kind of peace that one finds in grave yards," she added
      "Let there be peace, and joy, and power!" I answered. I must have grinned from ear to ear when we were facing each other again after our hug and our kiss that seemed to last without end. The dreaded battle had ended. It was done, finished, resolved into a great victory.

      I suddenly remembered how I had resolved that very issue in my own mind, towards Sylvia, when facing Ushi alone that night in Leipzig. A voice in me had said, "Don't do it! This is not a hypothetical situation. You are entering an unknown country with consequences that you cannot foresee." I told Sylvia that I had argued back, saying that the unknown country is a land of principle, the imperatives of which once ended eighty years of war. I suggested to her that by this evidence the consequences are known. Then, entering the land of advanced principles is not a risky proposition. The risks come with the consequences of shying away from this land. Those dire consequences are also known.
      I repeated to Sylvia what I had realized that night. I told her that the sage says to another person, "I see a god in you, and the god that is me honors the god in you, which I perceive to be a recognition of only one God."
      I explained to her that the poets of the world call this God, Love, and say that the love in me, for our humanity, honors the love in you that embraces our common humanity. I told her that, as a scientist I call this love an awareness of truth, "and so I honor your intellect, your understanding, your beauty, your awareness of the truth, all of which demand recognition. And I can love you in this fashion, because I can see the reality of that love in myself, as I see it in Ushi, and in all those others in whom I see an echo of my own love, an echo of our universal love, of our universal deity, the human being that we find in ourselves. So what is sex? Is it flesh? The flesh doesn't promise anything, nor does it profit anything. It is the appreciation of the beauty of ourselves as human beings that the sexual dimension is a part of. The beauty is in the beholder as well as in the object that is echoed in the beholder's thoughts. That bond that is anchored within unites us. It unites us all. The flesh has no part in that. Love is a spiritual element of a great Truth. It is the gentle touch, the laying bare of our hearts and of ourselves. Born up on this 'wing of love' we soar, and sheltered by it, we are secure."
      I told her that a poet once described this much better than I ever could. The poet wrote about love:

Brood o'er us with Thy shelt'ring wing,
  'Neath which our spirits blend
Like brother birds, that soar and sing,
  And on the same branch bend.
The arrow that doth wound the dove
  Darts not from those who watch and love.

      Sylvia's response was but a simple smile. More was not needed. Our world had changed and she was still with me, perhaps even more firmly than ever. What more can anyone ever dream of!
      "Let's go out and have some ice cream to celebrate the occasion," I said to Sylvia.
      She agreed. She said that this was a perfect idea.
      As we were getting ready I asked, as a joke, whether she might not have forgotten to ask something else of me?
      "You mean, me asking you to promise that you will never look at another woman, that this will never happen again, ever? I had this in mind, you know. But how can I possibly ask this now?"
      "I can promise you one thing," I replied to that. "You will always be at the pinnacle of my love. No matter to what height love becomes elevated in its unfolding, you will be at the pinnacle of it, above the clouds, touching the stars."

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 (c) Copyright 1998 - Rolf Witzsche
Published by Cygni Communications Ltd. North Vancouver, Canada