Member Rara Avis
Durban, South Africa
THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS LOVE
13 June 2015
Love is not a thing, not an entity to exist (or not) or find (or not) or believe in (or not). It is simply an emotion, that an individual is capable (or not) of feeling and giving and showing – either at all, or to a particular individual or to particular individuals. The first book of Corinthians Chapter 13 describes it perfectly. Erotic passion is noticeably not included in First Corinthians Chapter 13 because erotic passion is not part of love, any more than pepper is part of salt, but erotic passion can – and in the case of the love between a couple (although there could be specific exceptions) – should accompany it and be an expression of it.
Love is a noble emotion, a gift and beneficial to the recipient in every possible way, whether the recipient is aware of it or not. If it is not a gift to the recipient, and if it is not beneficial to the recipient, it isn’t love. It may be perceived as love by the giver, and/or the recipient, and/or other people, but despite certain clichés, perception is not everything.
Probably nobody loves in exactly the same way as anyone else in the world, past, present or future. Love is not a finite object that one selects from a shelf and applies – nor the same garment that one puts on - in certain similar circumstances and to whomever. It is a reaction to a particular individual – or where the giver is not acquainted with the individual in a group (such as starving children in a third world country) - it is a reaction to a symbolic individual representing the group. Thus any individual’s love for a person or group, differs from their love for every other person or group that they come to love in a lifetime.
Not everybody loves the same amount as everyone else, nor does anyone give exactly the same amount to everyone that one loves in a lifetime. Some people are intrinsically capable of feeling and/or giving and/or showing a great deal more love than others.
Love isn’t dependent on it being returned. If it is, it isn’t love, but at the very least partially a desire to be loved - and “loving” that person is in payment and on condition that it is returned - which is not the same thing. Often the recipient is completely unaware that he or she is loved. That is only a bad thing if it bothers the giver.
Love is not what is between two people when the love is mutual, despite the easy-flowing and acceptable semantics of referring to the “love between A and B”. It can’t be, because it doesn’t stand on its own. It exists as two separate gifts – just as if the two people buy each other a material gift, those two gifts do not become one. Because it is humanly impossible for two people to give exactly the same amount of love to the other nor the exactly the same “ingredients”of their recipes of love, there is always a difference in those two gifts, whether noticeable to them or anybody else or not, but that doesn’t necessarily mean (but it could) that the two gifts of love they feel, give and show, are incompatible.
Whilst many couples consider carefully their common or different likes and dislikes, very few, if indeed any, aside from emotionally, discuss logically and rationally how each one loves, what the intensity is, and what the “ingredients” are – and it is my humble opinion, that that is a great deal more to blame in the number of divorces and breakups of relationships, than one would ever guess. For a couple to be happy together, of course, there are many, many other considerations as well, but this one should be of great importance.
It is my humble opinion, that although there are many people who don’t know how to love (whatever they themselves believe), that only very severely psychotic people are incapable of learning to love or to increase their capacity to love – and even the very severely psychotic people, with the right professional direction may be able to do so, to at least a small degree. The key, of course, is that to learn to love or to learn to increase one’s capacity to love, one must want to, and be able to have the courage to open oneself up to the experience.
Love is not a thing, and thus can never complete a person. Even giving and receiving the gift of love, can never complete a person. A person needs to BE complete in order to love or to be loved.