Love is the most powerful emotion a human being can experience. The strange thing is, that almost nobody knows what love is.
Why is it so difficult to find love?
The word “love” is used and abused for the expression of different sets of feelings.
It is used as an expression of affection towards someone else (I love you) but it also expresses pleasure (I love wine).
To make it a little more complicated, the word “love” also expresses a human virtue that is based on compassion, affection, and kindness.
This is a state of being, that has nothing to do, with something or someone outside of oneself. This is the purest form of Love.
The ancient Greek used 7 words to define the different states of love:
– Storge: is a natural affection, the love one share with his family, animals, and the things that surround us. It is compatible with quite a bit of taken-for-granted or even of hatred at times.
– Philia: is the love that one has for friends freely chosen because of mutual compatibility and common values.
– Eros: is a sexual and erotic desire kind of love (positive or negative).
Eros is passion, not only of a sexual nature but also of an aesthetic or spiritual nature for what is conceived of as supremely beautiful and desirable.
– Agape: this is the unconditional love or divine love.
Agapic love is manifested when one person has much to give to another needier. It is generous self-donation without concern for reward.
– Ludus: this is playful love, like childish love or flirting.
– Pragma: long-standing love. The love of a married couple.
– Philautia: the love of the self (negative or positive)
These are 7 different kinds of feelings. The love one feels for your partner is not the same as the love you feel for a mother. Even the love for a partner changes in time. One feels different emotions in different situations and with different people.
But still, we use the same word. It is easy to understand that a confusion is easily made while communicating.
One can tell “love you” to two different people (and mean it), but to actually feeling in a different way.
This confusion is not only the case while 2 people are talking, but own brain does not get it.
What one feel is controlled by the right side of the brain and language is controlled by the left side. If one uses the word “love” 10 times a day in different situations, it losses power.
The left part of the brain does not get fully activated when you really mean “I love you” and want to get excited about it.
50% of your brain is a lot.
The first thing that you need to do is learn the differences between the 7 states of love. Not the words, but how they feel. It is easy if you recognize the words. It is basic training.
Awareness, that is the secret to love.
Biologically, love is a powerful neurological condition like hunger or thirst, only more permanent. We talk about love being blind or unconditional, in the sense that we have no control over it. But then, that is not so surprising since love is basically chemistry.
While lust is a temporary passionate sexual desire involving the increased release of chemicals such as testosterone and estrogen, in true love, or attachment and bonding, the brain can release a whole set of chemicals: pheromones, dopamine, norepinephrine, serotonin, oxytocin, and vasopressin.
However, from an evolutionary perspective, love can be viewed as a survival tool: a mechanism we have evolved to promote long-term relationships, mutual defense and parental support for children and to promote feelings of safety and security.
Love is a practice, it is not something you find or don’t find. You can practice love for the rest of your life.
Don’t abuse the word love. Use other words where you are not addressing emotion towards other people.
Example: I love chocolate, becomes: I enjoy chocolate. I love my job, becomes: I have a passion for what I do.
Enjoying, loving and passion are 3 different emotions.
It is essential to learn (again) the true meaning of words, not merely to communicate with someone else, but also to learn to experience them.
Words are very powerful instruments. Not only to communicate with others, but also with your self. The words you use creates awareness and eventually your reality.
If you use words wisely, you can learn to recognize what kind of love you are feeling, and enjoy the different kinds of love.
Words are agreements to express ideas or feelings. The meaning of words is not absolute, it is always a personal interpretation. The group of feelings associated with the word “love” is difficult to understand, and even more difficult to express to another person.
Let put it this way: it is impossible with only one word.
With the creation of a word, you can give it a special meaning. Some lovers create words to express what they feel to each other. A word creates an agreement or memories. These moments can be repeated when you use that word or when you think about it.
With love, you get what you put in. And if you don’t know how to find love within you, you will never find it outside of you.