It does my heart good to see the word "love" in the legal blogosphere. It sometimes takes courage (derived from the root word for heart) to use this kind of word in the company of lawyers. But here it is. This is Tim Hadley at Math Class for Poets quoting Bruce MacEwen at Adam Smith, Esq.:
I believe firms may increasingly find themselves in two camps.
One set of firms will cling to the "safety" of tradition, keeping associates in the dark, as the second-class citizens they are presumed to be, pointedly oblivious to "work/life" issues, letting the fungible young things sink or swim in the deep end of the pool they're being paid well to inhabit.
Another set of firms will embark on the adventure of embracing this generation of graduates as true professional peers and colleagues, every bit as ravenous for challenge, stretching, and unfamiliar new assignments as we were— and will also embrace the reality that the highest form of human happiness comes not with work alone, but with work and with love.
I wonder what kind of love they mean? I believe I know but decided to look into the definitions of love before asking them. The word can cause confusion:
In English, the word 'love' . . . is broadly defined and hence imprecise, which generates first order problems of definition and meaning, which are resolved to some extent by the reference to the Greek terms, eros, philia, and agape.
Eros, philia, and agape are covered all over the Internet and in more books and articles than I could link to in a week of full-time linking.
Eros is romantic, passionate, often sensual. I don't think that's what Bruce and Tim are talking about; we know the problems and liability eros can create and incur in the workplace.
Philia is friendship or brotherly love, as in Philadelphia is the city of brotherly love. C. S. Lewis's definition of philia includes a strong bond based on a common task or interest. In his definition, philia does not exist unless there is something the relationship is about, a reason or purpose.
Agape is pure love. C. S. Lewis defined it as love for one's fellow human being not depending upon any lovable quality of the person loved. In my Catholic boarding school days, the nuns defined agape as unconditional love, the love-thy-neighbor-as-thyself kind of love.
If we love our clients and the people with whom we work, what type of love is it? Philia or agape? Both? One for clients and the other for co-workers? Something else? The exercise of thinking those questions through can create a live link (love link?) between the head doing the thinking and the heart where we hold our values.
Bruce? Tim? What did you mean?
I'm looking for more love in the blawg belt of the blogospere.