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The meaning of love revealed in Song of Solomon

By Darlene Griffin, Opinions Editor

Hebrew has three words to describe “love” and three of these words are found in Song of Songs, or the book Song of Solomon. Raya, ahava and dod represent different layers and levels of love, starting with caring friendship, commitment, then intimate partnership.

Raya is used to describe the companionship and friendship. It is reserved for the closest of friends. An example of raya in the Song of Songs is in chapter 4 verse 7 when the writer uses the endearment “my darling.”

Anthony Dyches, senior English education major, has an example that relates to raya.

“I have a friend who is an Atheist. I count her as one of my truest friends and love her despite our differences with the love that Christ showed to the woman at the well,” said Dyches. “He knew she wasn’t a believer; He knew her past; He knew her present; yet He loved her still.”

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