The Essence of a Healthy Community is Love

Identity is the quintessential aspect of being human! We express our identity by forming communities, which involves individuals who commune and form collectives. We express our identity through our language, behavior, and relationships. Our health is expressed through our performance and well-being. We have used the concept of “love” in business for sometime.

Robert Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love characterizes love by three aspects: Intimacy, Passion, and Commitment.

  • Intimacy (or awareness) encompasses connectedness.
  • Passion (or energy) encompasses drive or energy.
  • Commitment encompasses short term decisions to be together and long term plans and accomplishments together.

One experiences love based on the strength of these three aspects. The theory identifies the following types of love:

  • Non-love: The absence of all three aspects.
  • Liking/friendship: This involves intimate liking, but not passion or commitment.
  • Infatuated Love: This involves passion, but not intimacy or commitment.
  • Empty Love: This involves commitment, but not passion or intimacy.
  • Romantic Love: This involves intimacy and passion, but not commitment.
  • Compassionate Love: This involves intimacy and commitment, but not passion.
  • Fatuous Love: This involves passion and commitment, but not intimacy.
  • Consummate Love: This involves intimacy, passion, and commitment; it is the complete form of love.

Furthermore, Robert Sternberg emphasizes the importance of translating the aspects of love into action. “Without expression,” he warns, “even the greatest of loves can die.”

Similarly, a more healthy community is one whose members are more connected, energetic, and committed while a less healthy community is one whose members are more disconnected, lifeless, and uncommitted. Furthermore, healthy communities must translate their love into action for it to thrive!

Fundamentally, the essence of a healthy community is love!

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