tmbt: eros reviving psyche
They understood the important union of love and soul, eros and psyche, the lover and the loved, those Greeks and Romans. The story of Eros, the son of Venus, falling in love with the beautiful princess Psyche, is told over and over again in paintings and sculpture, and especially well in this marble carved by the Italian Antonio Canova (1757 – 1822).
This statue which resides at the Louvre in Paris is a depiction of the saving of Psyche by Eros (Cupid) after a series of trials and tribulations forced upon her by Venus after Psyche’s curiosity and fear gets the better of her trust in Eros. It is called “Psyche Revived by Love’s Kiss” and was carved by Canova in 1787.
It is a truth. The soul can only be fully awakening with the kiss of love, a love that is deeply expressed even in the smallest of gestures. We find it in the words of a friend, in the sweep of the sky, in the song of a child, and in the arms and eyes of a truly connected lover. Love reaches to us and reaches in, a softening touch powerful enough to heal the most grizzled of wounds, the most bone-crushed moments of despair, the most shattered dreams that would otherwise hang on for lifetimes. Where effort and hopeful thinking fail, love succeeds in helping us to melt into our true selves. Love can move us, we these mountains of memory and fear and longing. Love shifts the world into greater alignment and seeps into every crack and crevice like a warm liquid salve.
I have been so very fortunate to have known this power of love first-hand. I am grateful. It is sheer, transformative beauty.
Photo by Marie-Lan Nguyen.