Love according to St Thomas and Catholic doctrine is an intention to do what is best for others and an intention to be in union with them. It is safe to assume that all agree with him. On the negative side anything that is not about doing what is best for others or causing division is not love.

Let us break up what he defines as love. Intention to do what is best. Trying to do what is best. And uniting with others in doing these things. The goal then is loving unity. So love that is not about uniting with the other but doing best for them is not love at all. It's a good imitation. It is an excuse for falling short.

This shows us something. It shows the dangerous and utter hypocrisy of Christians who claim to love everybody for it is humanly impossible to work for real union with everybody. Also, if the Catholic Church is such a great union then why are there divisions among Catholics? It is an artificial union!

We must add that the definition of love as given is about the other and is about giving. It is not about what the other person deserves or earns. This is unconditional love. In principle then this love should be unchanging.

Do we just see people that way because they are? Or do we have to come to believe they are? If it is the latter then it's not unconditional love for it becomes, "I only value you for it is my belief that you are valuable." Real unconditional love uses no props. It just looks and that is enough.

You do not love because the person is a creation of God and wonderful. You just look and it has nothing to do with God or faith. Anything else is, "I can't really just love you so I need something to get me to do it." It is fundamentally atheistic. Ignoring God if God made this person is opposing God and belief in him. Ignoring is a method of opposing when the ignored person is of huge importance. To ignore your fathers needs deliberately is trying to hurt him. So it is atheistic for you to love anybody properly.

Following this so far? It means unconditional love is very rare if it happens at all. Most who claim to understand it and be capable of it are lying. You cannot be the servant of a God of unconditional love if you have never loved that way yourself. It is hypocrisy to tell the stranger you love them that way when you in fact do not.

Kant argued that we cannot love people if we merely treat them as a means and not as ends - ie as important in themselves and not because of anything they do. This is Christian doctrine as well. It is another way of describing unconditional love. Treating people as an end means you can never hurt them and not even in the name of punishment or even reformatory punishment. That is using a person as a means of their own suffering. You declare that they have asked for it and you declare that because as persons they can suffer you will use their personhood to pain them to teach them a lesson.

Perhaps not punishing will be worse for them and for others. The notion of persons being ends tells us that everybody should be made happy and blessed no matter what they do but in our imperfect world this sadly is not possible. Punishment would be a necessary evil. It is a necessary evil for though the person should be happy making her or him happy will only give out the message that he or she should be allowed to hurt others so failing to punish is bad. But nobody can know if it will be so. Therefore those who preach love are really hypocrites. It is interesting how religion assumes that it knows. The atheists say we assume that not punishing will be worse and assume it on the grounds that mundane earthy reality encourages us to. We are guided by statistics not God!

So somebody dangerous needs to change to avoid punishment. There is no room for saying that God may heal or do miracles or that prayer will help. To bring those into the dilemma would mean you have no real reason at all to think it is helpful to cage terrorists. Perhaps the terrorists will be changed by the power of God. That thought is purposefully omitted. Religion itself turns atheist in the issue. It agrees with the atheists. Punitive justice is the gravest ethical issue there is. Even religion (despite some beliefs in miracles of a specific kind) assumes miracles do not happen because it wants to uphold punitive justice. It does not love sceptics of miracles for it accuses them of assuming that miracles do not happen without basing their disbelief or scepticism on the evidence when in the gravest matter it is guilty of what it falsely accuses sceptics of!

Is it true that working for and intending the wellbeing of others is loving them? Is it really treating them as ends only?

No. The real and only end is to fulfil your intention. An intention is just an intention. It is about wanting something to happen. It is not about if something is good or bad. If the intention is good, the good is not built into the intention for intention and goodness are not the same thing. An intention to do good is using something that is not about good to put it in a good direction. No intention is good or bad in itself. Like electricity, it depends on what you do with it. You always treat others as a means to fulfil your intention.

No. Treating others because they are ends not means is impossible. You judge them as ends thus you treat them as ends because of that judgement only. To treat people as ends means you do it because they are ends and not because you judge them to be.

No. Do you treat others well because they need to be treated well or because some standard, love, says you must? What if they do not need to be treated well? And if you do it for the sake of the standard you are not thinking of them as important but are thinking of the standard as important. You end up treating them as a means to fulfilling the standard.

You cannot love unconditionally. So who are you to say God loves you unconditionally? It sounds like you want to believe you get what you will not give. What do you know about God's unconditional love when you have problems with your own? You cannot really understand a God who loves all people unconditionally so you cannot say you love him.

Christians say they believe that God loves them for trying to do their best. This contradicts their teaching that he loves them unconditionally.

You may be told that your local terrorists who say they protect you are in fact controlling you. Unconditional love makes you see them as misguidedly looking after you in the wrong way. You will never see clearly. God claims to be there to help you cope as much as possible through life's troubles but what if he is benevolently controlling and manipulating you? God offers what some would call a benevolent dictatorship. A benevolent dictatorship is still a dictatorship and is more poisonous than a more shameless one for it is harder to get rid of and pollutes good people. It amounts to using kindness to exploit.

X says y is selfish simply because y does not do what x wants. So that is one person being selfish by telling you you should be doing what they want. Accusations of selfishness can mask your own selfishness. It is selfish for you are using love to control the other person. For example, "If you loved me you would marry me." "If you cared about me you would come home earlier." "If you were truly sorry to see me sick you would get a better team in to look after me." This is not selfish as long as you are not trying to use love to control another person somehow at their own expense. Does it compare to God saying, “Do not commit adultery. Do not kill. If you love me you will keep my commandments"? He says, “If you do not pray then you do not love me.” The human being is trying to get you to consent to letting you control them. That is all they can do. They cannot pull the strings that God can pull. Sin is seen as an attempt to defy God but believers deny this does God's power any harm. He still holds all things in being. He is still the one with the real control. The human being gets you to manipulate yourself. God however gives you no real freedom so God is selfish and those who tell you to obey him are colluding with him or think they are.

You are expected to keep taking God’s direction even if you keep falling. You must want to improve. If God through his servant points out to you how you may do that you are accused of deserving no respect for you are corrupt and lazy and selfish. So God is selfish for his loving commands hide his own egotism.

If a being who cannot be hurt and who is in control is commanding you then he is selfish. It is selfish if he asks us to think otherwise for we can only go by what we see. It is selfish for those who claim to speak for him - which is not their place unless they can show us the mandate - to tell us God loves us. They attack our right to just see what looks selfish and call it selfish. They attack our biology which says we just have to judge by sight. Selfishness and such like has to be judged at face value. It is too dangerous to do it any differently. If how one thinks of us and treats us is how we tell if that person is selfish or not then at least we can assess selfishness well if nothing else. If being selfish is something you only can know and nobody else can tell by what you do or say then it is a waste of time to make a stand against it and tell others including your children to be unselfish. If nobody can tell anybody they are selfish then life and politics and everything collapses.

Love demands honesty of a high standard. So love demands that you be vulnerable. God cannot be vulnerable so God cannot love.

Without courage there can be no love for courage seeks to protect the loved one and grow in ways about how to keep them safe. God cannot have courage for nothing can hurt him. He cannot turn into an ordinary person in order to be in danger of losing everything even his existence.

The vulnerability and courage angles show clearly God cannot love without conditions.

Jesus forbade you to love yourself with all your heart.  You are not allowed to love your spouse, or your child, or your mother or father with all your heart.  You are to love them as yourself. If there is no God then it is clearly selfish to put him in front of anybody - especially your loving parents. If you feel you love your mother more than yourself that is a sin. If you want to love anybody more than yourself and that would make you happiest it is still vilified as a sin.  Such doctrines are vile.   Jesus' teaching is uninspirational and really a burden to those who want to love. The teaching of Christ masquerades as wisdom but it is simply vulgar religious bullying with a thick sugar-coating.

We often do ourselves harm.  When we harm others we harm ourselves for it leads to misery for ourselves.  The humanist should love humanity with all her heart.  It is hard enough to do that without nonsense from Jesus getting in the way.


Human beings are horrendous judges of unconditional love. We think our pets and babies love us unconditionally but that is nonsense. It is demeaning to assume they should or do. We cannot expect it of them.

Unconditional love is really an illusion. Unconditional love is self-deception.

Conditional love values the person not as a person but as long as he or she does or is certain things.

Some would say that love is just doing your best to value others. If you can’t manage to value them much and it is not your fault then you can say you love them in the sense that you are trying. This thinking is incorrect. Love cannot be cheapened. Standards cannot drop just because people won't keep them.

God is not able to love you unconditionally or help anybody else to do so. If you understand what unconditional love means you will oppose the idea of God.

Most of those who demand unconditional love really just want others to not care what they do and even celebrate the evil they do. They hate how the one giving you unconditional love would encourage you to be the best version of yourself. They want the idea of a God who gives them the fake love they want for they know that if they go to a human being for it they will soon see they have no got it. Telling yourself a God loves you the way you want is foolproof for you reject any way of testing if that is true. It is the safe option for you make sure you will never see if you are let down or fooling yourself.

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