Okay I have been meaning to write this post for a while now but have had a bizzare combination of writer's block and a severe lack of motivation.
I have talked a little about Love before but it is such a complicated subject that I felt deserved exploring again. Love can only really be described in one word: Complicated.
First of all I get extremely fed up by people who imply that Love is some kind of mystical or even magical thing bordering on supernatural. It really isn't, it is just an emotion like all the others. Scientifically speaking it is just a chemical reaction and I think evolution can really acommodate for it's existence.
Love is important for our survival as a species, it encourages us to reproduce and to stick together as a community and it (supposedly) encourages couples to stick together to raise the offspring. Now obviously people are going to say that I'm under selling love or putting it down to a purely science explaination and that there is more to it than that.
Well i'm sorry but I'm not convinced it is anything more than that, it is just the strongest and most complex feeling we have so people get ansey and defensive over it.
I also think that love is an umbrella term, a little like the way 'mammels' is and there is a large number of variations and sub groups within that one category.
I tend to put it down into 4 broad areas: Family, Friends, Lust and Romance.
Family and Friends are closely connected as is Lust and Romance.
Now I love my family, as I'm sure most people do. What is interesting is that many people 'love' members of their family without actually liking them. Some people hate members of their family but still say they love them.
Now to me this is either a case of they don't really love that family member and can't admit it because it is considered a horrific taboo to not love your family, or alternatively it means love is not as simple as liking and disliking, even disconnected from that.
I think love for a family is a community based feeling and possibly even companisionship based feeling. So we have developed this strong attachment to people we have been made to spend lots of time with it to encourage sticking together. If you think about it the first community you'll meet when you are born is your family so it makes sense for them and you to feel a strong attachment so you all benefit from an addition to the herd.
Lust is pretty clear cut, strong sexual attraction based on instinctive criteria due to the selfish gene and the life instinct to reproduce (for the sake of nothing more but to carry on reproducing I may add which I see as completly stupid but thats another story)
Romance and Friendship Love is where things get very complicated. I half agree and half disagree with the idea that friendships start very subconciously on lust level. I agree that this can be the case certainly, and as you realise you cannot persue that person on a romantic level for whatever reason you settle for friendship. There are however other options I think. I often end up friends with people simply because they are there, I have to engage with them on a regular basis and they becomes friends simply because I have gottne used to their presence. This connects again with this community instinct and how groups and herds generally up our survival chances so naturally we befriend those close to us to encourage ourselves to protect them and for them to protect us.
Finally romance. Romance is a nusince and is frankly the thorn in my life. I also believe that romance is split into three kinda of love and not just the obvious to.
Romance never progresses from Lust to ful romanic love. There is some kind of middle bit where it is deeper than lust but not quite full on love. This tends to be the problematic part because people assume this is the proper love and get married or whatever but then it fizzles away before reaching the full love.
I would say I have been in full romantic love about three possibly four times. I have also lusted after many women too. What I am less sure about is whether my number of times of being in full love is more than my rough guess because that middle love can sometimes feel so intense that it is easily mistaken for real love.
The way I try and judge it is by how quickly that feeling disipates after the inevitable disaster. So whether that be rejection or breaking up, many times it has not taken long for the feelings to vanish but on these three (maybe four) occasions there is still a slight flare within me. Now the other trouble here is that even after the rejection or break up you may still be in contact with those individuals in some way, so what we must ask ourselves is: would the feelings dissipate quickly if we had no contact with them or is it actually full love.
Unfortuntly this tends to mean you can never be sure your in full love until after the relationship has fallen apart or you have been stepped on mericlessly. Which is really pessimistic. Now I don't here mean couples that have been together for years. There comes a point where you just know, but I'm refering to before you get to that stage and your still in that flowerly giggly stage where it is is middle love or full love.
Just to repeat, love is extremely complicated, it's great, it hurts and it isnt even anything physicial. Brilliant