Digestable #4: Valentines, Marriage, YNAB, C.S. Lewis, Soren Kierkegaard

Hello friends,

Welcome to another edition of Digestable, the short, weekly email where I share information, ideas, and what’s new with me. Let’s dig into all things LOVE this week! This content was sent to subscribers on February 14th, 2021.

Here’s what’s on my mind this week:

  • How to Fight About Money with Your Partner.This is a new post on my blog where I share how Amanda and I use an app we can’t live without, YNAB (You Need A Budget), to manage our family finances. What does this have to do with love? Well, studies show arguing about money early on in your relationship may be the number one predictor of whether or not you’ll end up divorced. I’d love to learn what is working for you in the comment section of the blog post.
  • 36 Questions to Bring You Closer Together. If you’ve run out of things to talk about on your V-day date, these questions are proven to “almost always make two people feel better about each other and want to see each other again”. My favorite is number five: When is the last time you sang to yourself?
  • Why You Will Marry the Wrong Person. In this opinion piece by Alain de Botton in the New York Times he explains his belief that we all marry the wrong person, but that it doesn’t matter. He claims one of the common mistakes we make is choosing a partner because “remaining single feels unbearable. We have to be wholly at peace with the prospect of many years of solitude in order to be appropriately picky.” He poses what should be the 37th question to “36 Questions to Bring You Closer” mentioned in the bullet point above: And how are you crazy?
  • Quote I’m pondering: “The promise, made when I am in love and because I am in love, to be true to the beloved as long as I live, commits me to being true even if I cease to be in love. A promise must be about things that I can do, about actions: no one can promise to go on feeling in a certain way. He might as well promise to never have a headache or always to feel hungry.” – C.S. Lewis, in Mere Christianity
  • Prayer for Lovers : “We pray for the lovers, that they may not promise one another more than they can perform, and, even if they could perform it, that they may not promise one another too much in love, lest this love of theirs might become a barrier to hinder Thee from drawing them unto Thyself, but that far rather it may assist to this end.” – Soren Kierkegaard, in Training in Christianity published in 1850.

    In this prayer, the late Danish philosopher seems to be riffing on St. Augustine’s concept of “ordered loves”. If you love something in its improper order (with Augustine positing that love of God should be first), your love will destroy and pervert the object of your love (or your relationship with it), rather than elevate it in the way you intended. More obvious examples of objects frequently guilty of receiving “disordered love” are love of food, alcohol, or physical beauty, but the disordered love of another person might be the trickiest one to navigate.

Thanks again for following along. Should you come across something noteworthy this week, please send it my way! If you are enjoying this newsletter, I’d love it if you shared it with a friend or two.

Yours truly,
Jeff

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