March 31 ~  Grows In Love Love: What Life Is All About

"One does not fall 'in' or 'out' of love. One grows in love." ~ Leo Buscaglia

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A passionate man who celebrated the positive power of love, writer Leo Buscaglia (1924-1998) was born Felice Leonardo Buscaglia on this day in Los Angeles, California.

Buscaglia spent the first six years of his life in his family's hometown of Aosta, a village near the Italian Alps.

After serving in the Navy during World War II, he returned to L.A. to teach. After the tragic suicide of a young student, Buscaglia focused his teaching on the heart and became a dynamic expert on love and human relationships.

Hugging became essential to his lectures.

He once said: "Never idealize others. They will never live up to your expectations. Don't overanaylze your relationships. Stop playing games. A growing relationship can be nurtured by genuineness."

He spent years seeking life's truths, traveling through Asia. "Travel joyously," he said.

Buscaglia discovered that all religions "agree on the same principles for humanity...There is no religion that disagrees on the basic tenet being love."

"You can be a follower of Muhammad or Jesus or Buddha or whomever. Always they said that the most essential factor is to love your neighbor. And to love you."

Called "Dr Love," Buscaglia suggested we replace prejudice and fear with love. He spread his message to American classrooms, in books, on television, and as an international lecturer.

Celebrate your uniqueness. Find your gift, then give it away, he said.

"Only when we give joyfully, without hesitation or thought of gain, can we truly know what love means," he said.

More Leo BUSCAGLIA Quotations