Love Actually Is All Around (1)

One of the greatest Prime Ministers of recent decades once said: ‘If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaky feeling you’ll find that love actually is all around’.

Ok, so that Prime Minister was Hugh Grant in Love Actually, but the statement hopefully still holds…

As we’ve been exploring the role of love in social enterprises, both as a motivator and as a mechanism for creating positive social change, I keep spotting love all around.  I thought a few short blog posts describing or quoting those glimpses, mentions or demonstrations of love might provide nourishing morsels of food for thought over the coming weeks.  Here’s the first.

In the book ‘Blue Labour’ there is a collection of essays and one is by veteran community organiser Arnie Graf of the Industrial Areas Foundation.  Here is what he says, I hope you will find it interesting to mull over and perhaps explore further:

“To build and to sustain power over the long haul takes not only a pressing issue, but also a network of relationships that can sustain and grow the organisation until victory is realised.  Organising around relationships first is a hard concept to digest; however, it is crucial to building power because people respond to relationships more than they do to tasks…  People were born to relate.  To paraphrase the well-known biblical scholar Martin Buber, all real meaning in life is in meeting (note he did not say ‘meetings’).  It is through relationships that we find love, meaning, and the power to organise around common concerns that bring quality to our lives.”

Arnie Graf, Community Organising and Blue Labour, Blue Labour, p.73