[L]ove and wisdom without application to useful purpose are only abstract and theoretical ideas, which, even after being entertained for a time in the mind, eventually pass away like the winds. But love and wisdom are brought together in application to useful purpose... and in this they become a single entity which is called actual. Love cannot rest unless it acts, for love is the active force in life; nor can wisdom exist and endure unless it does so from love and together with love whenever love acts, and to act is application to useful purpose. Therefore we define application to useful purpose as the doing of good from love through wisdom. Application to useful purpose is what good is.
Love without wisdom - what is it but a kind of foolish infatuation? And love accompanied by wisdom, but without application to a useful end - what is it but an airy affectation of the mind? On the other hand, love and wisdom together with application to a useful end - these not only make a person what he is, but they also are the person.
Monday, February 11, 2008
Good Definition of Use
In Conjugial Love 183:3-4 angels discuss the importance of use (or, “application to useful purpose,” as it is translated here) and provide a good definition of it.