The Ways and Power of Love by Pitirim A. Sorokin, Templeton Foundation Press, 2002 edition
Review by Hazel Henderson
This is undoubtedly one of the most important works of the past 100 years and on a par with Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species and The Descent of Man.
I first discovered the monumental Social and Cultural Dynamics (1957) treatise by Pitirim Sorokin when I was researching my The Politics of the Solar Age (1981). Sorokin’s vast overview of humanity’s epochal cultural waves and fluctuations between materialistic Sensate, Ideational and Idealist periods of history took my breath away and enabled me to see the transition from the fossil-fueled Industrial Era to the emerging Solar Age in the broader context.
Sorokin fled from Russia after Lenin triumphed. Sorokin was serving in the Kerensky provisional government as Minister of Culture and after arriving in the USA, he became a Professor of Sociology at Harvard University and founded the Harvard Center for Creative Altruism. I tried to find his The Ways and Power of Love (1954) long out of print. A friend was kind enough to Xerox copy this entire book, which I cherished – until I found this new edition.
No other serious research on love has ever achieved the depth and breadth of this extraordinary book. Love, of course, is the basic energy of humanity, powering our community lives, nurturing each successive generation, as I have documented in my research on the Love Economy (www.hazelhenderson.com). Love provides the psychic energy and enthusiasm for all our learning, personal development and sustaining our faith in the future and all life on planet Earth.
We at Ethical Markets Media (USA and Brazil) cherish the wisdom in this book. I introduced it to my beloved grandson Brendan Alexander Cassidy, aged 17 at the time, because he is such a loving, caring person. I asked him to read this book and, somewhat prematurely, invited him to write a review for our website’s Books and Review’s section. Brendan read The Ways and Power of Love and found it fascinating. It is truly a book for all ages!
Love is a power we can all celebrate as I have done in my lifelong research on the Love Economy, those hidden, unpaid sectors of caring, sharing and cooperating in all human societies. Let LOVE’s power continue guiding our future.