It is by loving, and not by being loved, that one can come nearest the soul of another; yea, that, where two love, it is the loving of each other, that originates and perfects and assures their blessedness. I knew that love gives to him that loveth, power over over any soul be loved, even if that soul know him not, bringing him inwardly close to that spirit; a power that cannot be but for good; for in proportion as selfishness intrudes, the love ceases, and the power which springs therefrom dies. Yet all love will, one day, meet with its return.
― George MacDonald, Phantastes
Below is the original photo used to create this image. These lovely lavender blooms were discovered on a lunchtime walk around the capital grounds in Richmond, VA. No special lighting or retouching, just a snap from my smart phone.