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Old 02-17-2010, 04:54 PM
GroundedSpirit GroundedSpirit is offline
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Default Ahhhhhhh Love...

Below is a snippet from another forum I participate in.
Where we spend our time here largely talking about 'love' (largely without definition) and it's many manifestations I found this interesting.

If we were to give any credence to such possibilities - how does it affect many of the discussions we have here ?

Does it devalue them in any way ? Or enhance them ?

GS

PS: I did have a response to this post expanding on some of the conceptual framework which I won't post here unless it seems appropriate to any responses.

Quote:
Part of human knowledge of the nature of the universe is explained by the theory of Evolution, which provides a framework for explaining aspects of the anatomy, physiology, and behavior of all living beings in terms of the efficacy of those aspects for assuring the survival of the species. It can easily be shown that physical sensations of the body, which result from stimuli impinging on the sensory organs, have evolved because they (pleasurable sensations) tend to attract us towards things that are beneficial, or they (pain and other unpleasant sensations) tend to repel us from things that are detrimental. Likewise, we can show that most mammals feel compelled to intervene on behalf of a member of the same species when that other expresses pain or appears to be in peril. This is particularly true in the case of two individuals whose lives are closely conjoined, as in a familial relationship. Thus, the scientific explanation for the fact that [if one person loves another, they would gladly do (nearly) anything to prevent the ones they love from suffering], is that this is a response that has evolved because it has contributed to the survival of the species. Any reasonable person will have this tendency, will feel sympathetic pain, will do what they can to prevent or alleviate the pain of another because it is in our genes. We value this tendency and call it an expression of “love” for good reason: it preserves our species, and particularly those individual members of our species who are closest to us genetically.

Last edited by GroundedSpirit; 02-17-2010 at 04:58 PM.
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Old 02-17-2010, 08:30 PM
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redsirenn redsirenn is offline
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There is evolutionary background to much of what we feel and talk about on this forum. It is argued that jealousy is a product of evolution that is spurred by procreation and an instinct to protect our genes. It is also argued that monogamy, or non-monogamy is genetically predisposed. (non-monogamy for the purpose of procreation, monogamy for the purpose of security)

The thing is, that we, as humans, have the ability to think beyond instinctual bindings. We can change behaviors from healthy to bad ones, and the other way around. We can give up our need for survival to protect people, and fight off jealousy when it is detrimental to what we want.

It makes sense that love can be seen as an evolved trait. It is probably best applied when considering family.

Now - the way I view love (as someone without children) is a series of active choices. I try as best I can to act lovingly and be aware of loving actions from those around me. Someone telling me they love me, and not acting like it does NOT fit my criteria. I love my friends, cat, family, bf, as best I can by trying to act lovingly towards them. Of course I have loving feelings in return: appreciation, compassion, etc. because of how they treat me. This is something I had to teach myself... I certainly wasn't born with this attitude.

Now if I had a child, it might be different. Instinct might play a large role here. Maybe those of you with children could let us know. Would you always love them, no matter what they did to you? This is certainly controversial, I realize. I have always wondered though.
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Old 02-17-2010, 10:42 PM
GroundedSpirit GroundedSpirit is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redsirenn View Post
The thing is, that we, as humans, have the ability to think beyond instinctual bindings. We can change behaviors from healthy to bad ones, and the other way around. We can give up our need for survival to protect people, and fight off jealousy when it is detrimental to what we want.
Yea - thanks for your thoughts RS. Although I do sometimes question that bit about thinking beyond instinctual behavior <chuckle> even though I tend to agree with you

And maybe this is really all too philosophical for our reasons for being here (forum), although we certainly seem to see a lot of philosophical debate take place on some topics.

But it seems we often sidestep, either intentionally or accidentally, any attempt to to define what 'love' really means. But we love to talk about it
So I grabbed this poster's (potential) definition in case it happened to be accurate.
Personally, I don't think it's that simple even though it undoubtedly holds some validity.
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Old 02-18-2010, 02:45 AM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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At first I thought the idea of defining love was too big and too complicated to explain. I then realized the error I was making was in my approach. I was trying to think about how I define love in a way that could apply to everyone.

I am a believer in finding truth and understanding internally with only guidance from external sources. If I draw upon the theories of others I accept that the information is theirs, not mine or anyone else’s. It may coincidentally be the same but will not dictate or convert my own internal discoveries or beliefs.

To help narrow down the type of love I am speaking about it is not the kind I have for family, friends or my daughter. It is the type of love I have specifically for Redpepper.

For me:

Love is trust.

Depth of love is determined by the level of trust.

The level of trust is determined by the willingness to make myself vulnerable.

Ultimate vulnerability is achieved by complete openness.

Total love is total vulnerability and the knowledge that I am safe in exposing myself to that person (or persons if you'r poly)

“The person I love the most is the one I give the means to hurt me the most without fear that they will do so.”

That is the kind of love I have for Redpepper and her alone.
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Last edited by MonoVCPHG; 02-18-2010 at 03:37 AM.
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Old 02-18-2010, 07:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post

“The person I love the most is the one I give the means to hurt me the most without fear that they will do so.”
That is very nicely put.
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Old 02-18-2010, 07:06 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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I'm not sure what a genetic explanation of love is supposed to change.

Fatty and sugary foods helped our ancestors survive better by giving them a high source of energy. Does that make chocolate cake any less delicious?

Surely there's some genetic reason why we find sunrises beautiful. Does that detract from the awe and joy I feel when I see them?

I couldn't care less whether "love" is just a biochemical reaction in my brain, a product of millennia of evolution. That chemistry feels fantastic and I want as much of it as I can get! If survival of the fittest meant that love makes you fit, then fit me in!
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Old 02-18-2010, 02:22 PM
GroundedSpirit GroundedSpirit is offline
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Nice feeback all,

And in the end it may not really be important if everyone has a single (or very similar) definition of love. But I think many problems arise between people simply because they are not clear on each others definitions/understanding. There's a certain 'assumption' that hides in the shadows. Of course we all know about assumptions

So these two explanations/descriptions are both interesting & similar takes...

Quote:
Originally Posted by RedSiren
Now - the way I view love (as someone without children) is a series of active choices.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post
The person I love the most is the one I give the means to hurt me the most without fear that they will do so.
So here it seems we have an approach that your love - or loving, is very much a 'choice'.
But is it ? Really ?
Do you think it would be possible to throw that switch 'off' - to 'choose' otherwise - to stop loving those who you feel love for ? Granted you might 'choose' to stop certain expressions of it if you were forced to - but could you intentionally cancel what you feel in your heart ?

Because if not - then this love thing is something more than choice.

So now what ??????

GS
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Old 02-18-2010, 04:09 PM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GroundedSpirit View Post
Do you think it would be possible to throw that switch 'off' - to 'choose' otherwise - to stop loving those who you feel love for ? Granted you might 'choose' to stop certain expressions of it if you were forced to - but could you intentionally cancel what you feel in your heart ?

Because if not - then this love thing is something more than choice.

So now what ??????

GS
My Love is definitely not a choice. The expression and shape of the love I have is a choice. I think it is possible to switch off a lot of connections and have proven that ability, but I know I cannot switch off the kind of deep connection that love gives me. Externally it might seem so, but internally it is a concious channelling of a possibly unhealthy expression of love to that of a healthy one.

Being so confident in this is not a matter of naivity. It Is a survival mechanism and an understanding that I can recognize the positives in a relationship as well as the negatives and act upon that information to focus on the good and healthy aspects available. There is self denial in this. But denying ourselves unhealthy things although we crave them is a part of being balanced and in control.
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Old 02-18-2010, 04:31 PM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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Hi GS,

I realized you highlighted the word "give" in this statement "The person I love the most is the one I give the means to hurt me the most without fear that they will do so."

I don't fall in love easily. Twice I have been in pure love throughout my life...I have been in lust more than that and infatuated with people a few times but that was merely a way to avoid issues.

I don't form deep connections easily, I don't let people in easily or want to go to deep levels of connection with many people. But when I meet someone, I know almost immediately if the potential to trust will be enough to reach the depth that I would consider "love". I don't have a spectrum or sliding scale of this type of love. I don't love people a little bit, or just enough to justify sharing physical intimacy with them. Of course the deepening of trust leading to that takes time but with the two people I have fallen in "pure" love with it is extremely fast. I knew my ex wife for 3 months before we got married and I was unwavering for 15 years.

The first day I met Redpepper for coffee I walked away knowing I could and would fall in love with her if we continued to see each other. The first time I met her I told her secrets only my ex wife knew..the stories behind my tattoos. I also told her about the meaning of ones even my ex wife never knew about. Meeting her was a choice, opening up to her was a choice, falling in love with her was not a choice..
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Old 02-18-2010, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post
“The person I love the most is the one I give the means to hurt me the most without fear that they will do so.”
Wow. I tried and I really *can't* think of love that way. When I love someone, they are a source of joy in my life and that joy just multiplies between us when we're together. Measuring it in terms of how they can hurt me just doesn't seem to apply. I used to think that way and it just attached far too much pain to love. It's been so much more joyful and easy when I realized what a source of joy people are in life.
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