Marriage Is Greater Than Love

"‎Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being "in love" which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two." - Louis de Bernieres (Formerly we had attributed this to Augustine, which seems quite unlikely.)

"Marriage is more than your love for each other. It has a higher dignity and power, for it is God’s holy ordinance, through which he wills to perpetuate the human race till the end of time. In your love you see only your two selves in the world, but in marriage you are a link in the chain of the generations, which God causes to come and to pass away to his glory, and calls into his kingdom. In your love, you see only the heaven of your own happiness, but in marriage you are placed at a post of responsibility towards the world and mankind. Your love is your own private possession, but marriage is more than something personal—it is a status, an office. Just as it is the crown, and not merely the will to rule, that makes the king, so it is marriage, and not merely your love for each other, that joins you together in the sight of God and man." - Bonhoeffer


The first one is not a direct

The first one is not a direct quote from Augustine is it? I can't imagine Augustine saying, "That is just being 'in love' which any of us can convince ourselves we are." (Unless there are hip new translations of Augustine floating around)

The understanding of my

The understanding of my office (and that of those above me below me and beside me) has been a help to me many times. Thanks for this reminder.

Dear Daniel, I have done some

Dear Daniel,

I have done some digging, and it seems that the quote as it is stated above is more commonly attributed to Louis de Bernieres from a novel he wrote in the mid 1900's called Captain Corelli's Mandolin. Though, there are plenty of references to the quote being Augustine's too. So, I'm inclined to think the quote is Augustine's, but it may have been altered somewhat by de Bernieres when he used it is his book. I'm certainly not the best at googling stuff, so I may still be wrong.

I'm going to go out on a limb

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that it wasn't Augustine. He only had one child, the son of his first lover, whom he never married. (In fact, he didn't ever marry, so far as I know.) I can't imagine him being able to speak of his ex-lover and himself as "one tree, not two" to his son, even though he did love her dearly.

I've changed the citation accordingly.