The Four Loves Read-Along ~ What is Love?

What are your ideas about love?  Is love an overwhelming romantic feeling?  Can it be a decision or a duty?  Can you fall out of love?  Have you wished for a better understanding of the love of God?  Can friends love each other?  What about families and our love for them?  In English, we use the same word for all these feelings … love …. but the Greeks have different words for these feelings of love and each has its different distinctions.  Do you want to learn more?  Then please join me in my read-along of C.S. Lewis’ The Four Loves for the month of June!

The Four Loves

Links to posts: Chapter 1 & 2 Introduction & Liking and Loves for the Subhuman / Chapter 3 Affection / Chapter 4 Friendship / Chapter 5 Eros / Chapter 6 Charity

C.S. Lewis is best known for his Chronicles of Narnia books, but in his time he was more respected as a professor and expert in medieval and renaissance literature and for his theological works.  The Four Loves is based on radio talks that Lewis gave on the BBC in 1958 where he explored these different kinds of love: Storge (family affection), Philia (friendship), Eros (romantic love) and Agape or Charity (God love).  They are the only audio talks that remain of Lewis.

The Four Loves

As for a schedule, I thought I’d go with this:

June 1 – 7                 Chapters 1 & 2       Introduction & Liking and Loves …..

June 8 – 15               Chapter 3               Affection

June 16 – 21             Chapter 4               Friendship

June 22 – 30             Chapters 5 & 6       Eros & Charity

Fortunately, it’s a rather short book comprising of approximately 180 pages so the reading commitment will be more than manageable.  I’ll try to compile posts for each week for discussion but if plans go sideways you can always return to this post to comment with your thoughts.

The Four Loves

So if you’d like to join me, you’d be very welcome as we navigate the waters of these four important and necessary types of love!


all photos courtesy of Pixabay

37 thoughts on “The Four Loves Read-Along ~ What is Love?

  1. Greeks had it right with separate words for each part. I HATE how we use it today. I can love a cookie, a car, my wife and my brother. Sigh…

    • I KNOW!! It’s ridiculous. I can’t wait for what Lewis has to say. I wonder how it became so homogenized ….???

    • I hope you can join, Jean! If you’ve read it before it shouldn’t be that taxing and you’d be a great addition to the discussion. I hope things lighten up a bit for you, especially with summer on its way. Have you had your iron levels checked?

  2. I’d like to but not sure I’ll manage that month, like Jean my energy is so scattered right now. Just read in A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle: “Love is not a feeling. It is a person.”

    • I hope you do, Lory. It’s not that long but you can see how you feel. I know that you’re going through a challenging time right now.

      Interesting quote. I can see that it turns the focus from the subject to the object but past that it’s not clear. I see I’ll have to read some L’Engle! 🙂

  3. I’ll plan to (at least attempt to) join in! My library has a copy available, and my other reads right now are either short or non-urgent. I”m very curious about what Lewis has to say–some of my reading lately has had me wondering about the past conceptions of “love” vs today’s views and the varieties thereof, so the timing is actually quite good.

    • That’s great, Amanda!! I’m so glad you’re joining in.

      Me too! I think our concept of “love” has changed over centuries and even decades. And I’m so interested in investigating the differences!

    • Yay, Faith! 😀 We’ll be so glad to have you! It will be so helpful to have readers participating who have read it before.

  4. I knew that the Greeks had defined four types of love, but I learned today when Jesus questions Peter about whether he loves him, he uses three of the four types of love in his questioning. That fascinates me. I will see if I can get a copy of this book and join you in June.

    • How interesting! So in English we think Jesus is simply repeating himself but in Greek he’s actually making important distinctions!

      So glad that you’re going to join in, Deb, and add some of your valuable insights! Yay!

    • Awesome, Marcelle! I’m so happy that you’re joining. Love your blog, BTW …. you have many more obscure books that I recognize yet don’t see reviewed often … and even some I don’t recognize and need to investigate. Looking forward to following your blog!

  5. I have only dabbled in Lewis’s theological works, but since I am reading all the Narnia books and his Space Trilogy this year, I decided this readalong is a great idea for me. Just got the book from the library, so count me in!

    • Woo hoo! That’s great, Laurie! Lewis’ non-fiction is so helpful alongside his fiction to understand ideas he’s trying to communicate. This read should be so enlightening.

    • I didn’t know it was only on Audible. Thanks for the tip, Faith. Now I know what to ask for for my birthday! 😉

  6. I read this many years ago and remember really liking it. I need to pull it out and read it again. And I’d love to hear Lewis reading his own work!

    • I’ve started to look it over and so far it’s not easy. But I’m anticipating it will get easier when he starts to examine the four loves. I hope!

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    • Awesome, Amanda! I’m so happy that you’ve decided to join us. We have a C.S. Lewis reading “gaggle” now, lol! 😉

      • Lol! I actually started already–I read the introduction on Monday, and it’s a little…intense. I hope the rest is a bit easier-going, or I may not manage to finish by the end of the month! 🙂

        • The first two chapters are challenging. I’m going to post each week so hopefully that will help people get their bearings. I anticipate that once he starts describing the four loves, it will be easier. I hope!

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