The Song of Songs poem has two voices that must be thought together. The voices within the poem are two women. The first one is holding back to love whereas the second one is giving herself too much to love. The girl must decide if she will marry King Solomon for his money or love a shepherd boy for love. In the beginning, she swoons for Solomon and is astounded in her good fate of marrying a dreamy but on the other hand she is disconcerted when her heart keeps on thinking about the shepherd back home. Her dilemma of having to choose between Solomon and the shepherd brings in the two voices as she is torn between two different men for different reasons. She is attracted to the 33 year old king Solomon for material wealth and fame whereas she is attracted to the shepherd for love, joy and inner happiness.
When other people see her with King Solomon, her sense of self bounds with pride but her heart leaps with love when she is all alone with the shepherd. For a short period, she unconsciously falls for the charms f the king like all women in her surroundings but finally, she chooses to be the shepherd’s queen of hearts instead of Solomon’s queen of diamonds and gets married to the poor shepherd boy from her home town of Shunem. Through her experience of love, both as the one who is love and the one who loves, that the voice is noticeably expressed The voice of love in the song is a woman’s voice that advocates that love and wisdom draw men strongly with the intricacy and ambiguity of a woman’s allurements. It speaks overwhelmingly of love as she depicts its magnificence and delights. The poet creates the voices of the two speakers to represent what it is like to be young and in love.
The two voices must be thought together in order to bring forth the consequences of alteration of voices in the poem. They must be thought together and balanced i.e. for the woman to realize whatever she feels in her heart, she must balance giving and receiving love from both the shepherd and the king. On doing so, she will realize her full potential and marry one who pleases her most in all manners. One of the results that come up from bringing the voices together is an underscoring of the unrestricted characteristic of erotic love in regard to roles based on gender. The two voices must be brought together in order to give each one of them an equal chance and amount of space in the poem. As such, each voice expresses the body of the other and each describes the desire they feel for each other. Furthermore, the two voices must be thought together in order to give a credible chance to reflect on and celebrate the happiness of both kinds of love i.e. between King Solomon and the shepherd. They must be brought together to show that the two lovers are in harmony, each desiring the other and rejoicing in their intimacy.
The centre of the Song of Songs teaches us a lot about love. It is all about giving and taking in relationships. The song is all about human love and more so the ideal love relationship between men and women. It emphasizes greatly on the importance of love not only to a married couple but also of the love that should exist between each and every individual. It stands immoral when people and especially married couples force each other to do things. Instead, they should respect each other since they are bounded together by love. The song puts emphasis on the importance of love as a decision and not just an emotion. People who choose to love each other will always have their love for each other growing and increasing as time goes by. The same applies to the love relationship that exists between God and his people which as well grows and increases with time. Love plays a crucial role in an individual’s relationship with God. People must learn to be completely loyal to their creator and more so trust in Him completely. An individual’s relationship with God begins the moment that a person decides to love God. This is a personal decision and at that particular moment one’s emotions and feelings are not significant. God makes it possible for one to love Him and as such, the love for God does not remain the same as it grows and increases. The book teaches on love just as Anstophes does- the woman in the poem is a soul mate who waits for the shepherd’s love and completes it.
Love is not all about the relationship that exists between a bride and her bridegroom. Actually, it is more wonderful than that. In the centre of the Song of Songs, the poet comes up with new subjects i.e. love should be as one that exists between brothers and sisters. The poet illustrates how love continues enduring even after marriage and even to death. As he states, love is ‘as strong as death’ (Song of Songs chapter 8 verse 6). By so doing, he wants to emphasize on the greatness and power of love. For instance, the woman in the poem wishes that she knew her husband when she was a little girl since her love for him is so wonderful and as such, wishes that she had always known that love.
The poet wants to drive the point that we should not take sex as the only manner to express love. Sex is only for married couples and we must not imagine that we can only have real love for such couples. Real love should exist amongst us all: love for friends, love for children and parents, love for brothers and sisters, etc. We show real love when we use our lives to assist other people who are in need. Love is as strong as death and people should love each as long as they live. For instance, when one partner in a marriage relationship dies, the married relationship will end but the love that had for each other will not end. In the same way that the power of death overcomes a person completely, the power of love also overcomes a person completely. Real love is always good and kind and exists to help and benefit people. Love cannot be put out by anything and nothing can destroy real love. Love cannot be bought; it is a priceless gift costing nothing. It costs the life of a person who gives it. Genuine love amongst individuals will affect their whole lives as it lays the strategies that will be followed thereafter. Real love goes hand in hand with respect and honor. In songs of songs chapter 8 verses 12 and 13, the man does not just appreciate the vineyard gift from his wife but more so loves to hear her voice.
The symposium boasts of exquisite speeches in praise of love. However, while all the speeches do well in elucidating the various aspects of love, none does so as well as the speech delivered by Diotema to Socrates, and in turn by Socrates to the congregation of his friends. Thus, this shall be an attempt to contrast the other speeches to the speech delivered by Diotema in praise of love. First the enduring stand on love taken by each speech is important in differentiating each from Diotema’s speech. Phaedrus notes that the army made up of lovers would be near invincible since each lover would rather die a thousand deaths rather than be seen by their beloved abandoning their posts.
Pausanias, on the other hand, contributes to the notion that love is not unitary, but rather occurs in duplicate. In his assertion, he notes that there are two types of love, one divine, and the other common. The love between older women and boys for instance, in classified as common love since it arises out of the want to satisfy bodily desires. Love that desires maturity and wisdom is classified, according to this description as divine. Aristophanes cedes that love is the pursuit of happiness, in that humans were originally made with two sets of each organ, but Zeus in seeing their debauchery, cut them in half. Thus, love is the pursuit by man in search of their other halves. Agathon delivers his speech last, before Socrates takes over. He sees love as a master upon the subjects he dwells. In other words, according to Agathon, love is as nearest to perfection as possible.
Socrates begins his narration of Diotema’s speech by disapproving some notions propagated by Agathon. To begin with, Socrates presents love as needy and lacking in beauty. In this assertion, Socrates departs from a number of the speeches that praise Eros as a great god. Gods are self sufficient and happy, and if Eros is lacking in beauty, which he seeks, then he cannot be a god. Indeed, it is upon this foundation that the speech by Diotema is based, upon the lack of love. The speech by Diotema shows that, in contrast to the depiction of love as sufficient and complete, in its lack and deficiency proves to be of much utility to man. Each of the preceding speeches attributed god like features to love. However, Diotema attributes to love qualities that are in between immortality associated with gods, and mortality. Diotema describes love as the son of both need and resource, neither fully wise, nor fully ignorant. Love according to Diotema, is the desire to have the good forever.
The speech by Diotema differs primarily from the others in that it views love not as a god, but as a guiding spirit for mankind. It possess it own wants and needs which makes it ambitious, and anyone Possessing it shows the same attributes of ambition towards the everlasting good. Thus love does not control, but compels one towards aiming for a fruitful life, full of goodness, while shunning the bad. Love seeks immortality in its quest for the good that is everlasting. In seeking attainment of deeds that persist all time, love hopes to attain the divinity which the other speeches confer unto him. Thus, in Diotema’s speech, love’s ultimate aim is to achieve immortality.