Romantic Thoughts And Quotes To Live By

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As one who has studied more than his share of philosophy and poetry, I've stumbled across a wide array of inspirational quotes to live by, the best of which always seem to come from my favorite time period, the ancient world. I just love reading about the way the ancients looking at the world, their perspective and romantic thoughts about a largely unexplored world and the role of the people living in it. Their romantic thoughts and perspectives were so different than ours today. This quote to live by is one of my favorites, a foundational quote that changed the way my mind thought as a younger man, and set me down the path of romantic thoughts and ideals. The quote comes from the ancient Persian poet Rumi.

"Your task is not to seek love, but merely to find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it." Rumi

I love this picture of romance, of human beings doing something to better themselves instead of just sitting around waiting for someone to drop out of the sky and into their lives. As a younger man, I was confronted by a singular question: "Should I spend my time finding the right person, or spend my time becoming the right person?" Everyone wants to find love, but most people spend all their time searching for the right person without ever giving much thought to becoming the right person for someone else. As a younger man, I spent so much of my time out searching for that perfect someone. But then I read quotes like this one, and they made me wonder, what kind of man would that perfect someone want to fall in love with? Should I be spending all my time looking for her, or should I be spending more of my time becoming the kind of man that a girl like that could really fall in love with?

I chose the latter, to be a romantic, and I set out to remove the barriers to love that I had built within myself. Of any romantic quote to live by that I've read, this quote has been the most influential. It motivated the romantic thoughts and ideals that make me the man I am today.

I think that each of us has to make this choice at one point or another, or perhaps we choose it subconsciously everyday by how we live our lives. It's fascinating to think that natural barriers to love are even real at all, that many of us carry them unknowingly. In America, I think that Hollywood proliferates the idea that all we have to do is find that perfect someone and then we'll be happy, that the barriers and walls will fade away, and everything will be made right in our lives. But is that really how it is? Is each of us not responsible in part to become a better person than they are today?

In reality, it must be something of a mix of the two, of finding the right person and becoming the right person. For my own part, the only thing that I can control is who I am and who I'm becoming. And I've realized more and more that who I am still has many barriers to lasting love built within him. But that's ok. I'll get there someday. I hope you do too.
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