With us, love has been reduced mostly to a popular word, easy to use to intensify a frivolous appreciation. “Oh, I love it!” we say when told of something really cute. Or it can be used as a handy weapon against the haters of whom we disapprove. Too bad. But love comes into our civilization – the Gospels being the source best known to me – as a way of being in the world. Love is a force, extraordinarily demanding and humbling, dangerous too, for those who attempt to take it seriously.

Can love take sides?