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What is love? Can you define it?





chaity
This one is for all those who have either experienced this or has been a part of it. Well valuable answers of all is needed.

Edit by Bondings due to bad spelling.
jeffryjon
chaity wrote:
ths one is fr all those who hv either expierience ths or hs been a part of it...............well valuable answers of all is needed....................................


Describe, yes, though defining it may prove difficult and even in describing we may have to look at other states. In my experience of love, it's allowing something to be/flow as it is without interruption from me. This is why we more commonly experience 'conditional love' and less often experience 'unconditional love'. In most cases, including my own (though I've got a lot better at it over the years), allowing 'unconditional love' to flow happens much less often. I find it much easier to describe in terms of absence of other phenomena.

Description:
When we have absence of any fear (however small), plus absence of any need to inter-fear (mentally, physically, passively), we have love.

Observation:
Due to the above description, we tend to live in a world where we love only those things or people that operate within our current limits of tolerance. In other words, love flows within our tolerance limits and anyone or anything operating within those tolerances will experience the love due to us not needing to fear it or interfere with it. Of course that doesn't mean that person or thing will experience love when operating in the environment of others with different tolerances. That said, it's still true that since fear is essentially a weakness, when a group of people notice that one member no longer fears someone or something, they are likely to feel encouraged to some greater or lesser extent. 'Courage' of course relating to being in your heart (core).

I don't believe love can be given, even though that's a commonly used phrase. It something that exists as a default whenever something isn't blocking it or trying to push it away. As such, we can interfere with it for a while, though in the long run that interference is as tiring as creating waves in a lake to try and hide the clear waters underneath.
Bikerman
jeffryjon wrote:
Description:
When we have absence of any fear (however small), plus absence of any need to inter-fear (mentally, physically, passively), we have love.

I cannot agree with that.
I have no fear of my next door neighbour - not even a twinge. She has no fear of me to the best of my knowledge. Neither of us feel any need to interfere in each other's life, but both would provide help if asked.
Do I love her? Not in any sense that I understand the word, no.

What you describe seems to me to be a pretty good definition of the word 'indifference'.
jeffryjon
Bikerman wrote:
I cannot agree with that.
I have no fear of my next door neighbour - not even a twinge. She has no fear of me to the best of my knowledge. Neither of us feel any need to interfere in each other's life, but both would provide help if asked.
Do I love her? Not in any sense that I understand the word, no.

What you describe seems to me to be a pretty good definition of the word 'indifference'.


It can't be indifference if you would help her. If you were indifferent, why bother to help or even consider the possibility of helping? What you're describing is conditional love. You have no fear of her, nor do you feel the need to interfere with her (presuming of course she remains within the limits of how she's already appeared in your life). You would however assist her is asked (again within the limits of where you're prepared to assist).

As my first post in this thread implies, defining love is not something I (personally) am able to do and that's because I don't believe it to be an active thing that can be created or invoked by me, (in my current perception). It's a default state which among many other things allows for evolution, which I'm no way convinced man is able to allow. We (mankind), because we only allow love conditionally (and that based on those areas where our fears don't cause us to interfere), were by my understanding, permitted to create because of the allowance provided by what we're calling 'love' and yet, we would seek to stop the process of evolution if we feared something new to be threatening.

What if your neighbour underwent a change or evolution of personality and started behaving in a way that you believed threatened you (or even bugged you for that matter) - would this decrease the feelings of what you don't understand as love toward her?
Bikerman
jeffryjon wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
I cannot agree with that.
I have no fear of my next door neighbour - not even a twinge. She has no fear of me to the best of my knowledge. Neither of us feel any need to interfere in each other's life, but both would provide help if asked.
Do I love her? Not in any sense that I understand the word, no.

What you describe seems to me to be a pretty good definition of the word 'indifference'.


It can't be indifference if you would help her. If you were indifferent, why bother to help or even consider the possibility of helping? What you're describing is conditional love. You have no fear of her, nor do you feel the need to interfere with her (presuming of course she remains within the limits of how she's already appeared in your life). You would however assist her is asked (again within the limits of where you're prepared to assist).
I'd help any person within reason.
Quote:
What if your neighbour underwent a change or evolution of personality and started behaving in a way that you believed threatened you (or even bugged you for that matter) - would this decrease the feelings of what you don't understand as love toward her?
But I don't have any feelings for her, so any feeling I did have would be ipso facto a change...
jeffryjon
Possibly from a feeling of indifference to a feeling of other than indifference (couldn't resist!!!)

My understanding of the word love (rightly or wrongly) is closely related to the word 'leave', in the sense of 'leave it to be what it chooses to be'. This wouldn't be too far away from the supposed Germanic origin of the word. (whoops there we go with words again, but how else do I define Confused )

I don't believe it has anything to do with the phrase 'in-love' which to me is infatuation (sometimes but not always powered by the sex-drive).

What I'd describe the relationship with your neighbour as, is funnily enough, 'neighbourly love' (not really a new concept). If neighbourly love were to increase, we could even get more community spirit (whoops, there I go again using a no-no 'perceived as religious' word) Wink
Bikerman
What Germanic origin would that be?
The only one I know would be leubh which means to care/desire.
Hardly a synonym for leave alone.....
jeffryjon
Concise Oxford Dictionary:

Old English lufu, of Germanic origin, related to leave and lief
Bikerman
I think the OCD is up the spout on that one.
Firstly I suspect the word Love comes from Sanscrit - lubh meaning desire.
Secondly the german Lufu doesn't mean leave, it means desire
Thirdly lief doesn't mean leave either - it means dear/beloved

PS - I suspect you have your 'leaves' mixed up - it is related to leave as in permission, not as in depart.
spinout
Desire - aha - then I really can tell I have not been close to love!!! Confused Laughing

Every thing I don't desire happens and vice versa. Has anyone here gained a desire????

I just won the Swedish championship in country music - I didn't desire it since since I didn't want to play an extra time cos I was drunk - Of course I won... And in my genre the other bands most desire was to win... They didn't!
Is this universe a prank??????? I finger in my face, truelly!

Hm, a twist, if my gr8test desire is the see someone dead that person will live forever Laughing Well in pain it is ok though Laughing
jeffryjon
Bikerman wrote:
I think the OCD is up the spout on that one.


Ok - based on your theory that OCD is up the spout,

Bikerman wrote:
PS - I suspect you have your 'leaves' mixed up - it is related to leave as in permission, not as in depart.


jeffryjon wrote:
Description:
When we have absence of any fear (however small), plus absence of any need to inter-fear (mentally, physically, passively), we have love.


2 ways of describing the same thing isn't it? The absence of any need to interfere, is in essence granting someone/something leave to go ahead with whatever it wants to do.

Bikerman wrote:
Firstly I suspect the word Love comes from Sanscrit - lubh meaning desire.
Secondly the german Lufu doesn't mean leave, it means desire


Sanskrit 'lubh' can also mean to be greatly disturbed/perplexed/become disordered/go astray, (Sanskrit/English by Sir Monier-Williams and still the main dictionary recommended to Indian students of Sanskrit/English). This alternative meaning of the translation which also includes the desire translation, could be roughly translated as 'un-desire', so the verification given is placed into reasonable doubt.`
Bikerman
Quote:
2 ways of describing the same thing isn't it? The absence of any need to interfere, is in essence granting someone/something leave to go ahead with whatever it wants to do.
No not at all the same thing.
Leave is given by someone with authority to someone subordinate. It is very different and completely distinct from non-interference.
Quote:
This alternative meaning of the translation which also includes the desire translation, could be roughly translated as 'un-desire', so the verification given is placed into reasonable doubt.`

Only if you butcher language. You are a little too fond of this butchery for my tastes.
Disturbed, perplexed and disordered are all words one might associate with infatuation. To try and define them in terms of 'non desire' is stretching language past breaking point. In fact it is just wrong.

The other etymological root is via ancient Mongolian : ala-aba = groin magic -> alabah -> labah -> lubh. So it can be said to date to pre-Greek, pre-Sumerian times into the times of shamanism...
It then crops up in the East as Lubh and in the West as the latin libere (to please).
jeffryjon
Bikerman wrote:
The other etymological root is via ancient Mongolian : ala-aba = groin magic -> alabah -> labah -> lubh. So it can be said to date to pre-Greek, pre-Sumerian times into the times of shamanism...
It then crops up in the East as Lubh and in the West as the latin libere (to please).


Which couldn't of course be related to 'liber' - freedom (to be allowed, hence without interference). Never mind - all spoken language is a play on words - call it butchery if you like. I'm still able to love you (in a neighbourly way)
Bikerman
But that was a bastardisation of Lubere, at which point the word took off in a new direction (but we get left with Libido, of course). The roots of the 'Love' word are as stated and there is absolutely no case to be made that Love has any root meaning to do with freedom or 'un-desire' or 'leave alone' or any other such construction. It just isn't the case.
deanhills
I like Zick Rubin's analysis of what love means, probably comes the closest to how I see love:

Quote:
Psychologist Zick Rubin proposed that romantic love is made up of three elements: attachment, caring, and intimacy. Attachment is the need to receive care, approval, and physical contact with the other person. Caring involves valuing the other persons needs and happiness as much as your own. Intimacy refers to the sharing of thoughts, desires, and feelings with the other person.

Based upon this definition, Rubin devised a questionnaire to assess attitudes about others and found that these scales of liking and loving provided support for his conception of love.


Source: psychology.about.com

He took a scientist approach to get to his above theory. The Website gives more information on the experiment that he conducted.

When I did my searches, turned out this Zick Rubin is quite a character. He was a Professor in Psychology at Harvard and Brandeis Universities at one time, and then completely changed and became a very successful lawyer. Quite something to be successful in two professions during one life time! Must have a brilliant mind.

http://zickrubin.com/profiles-rubin.html
The-Nisk
In reply to the original post:

Love, when you get down to it, is just a bunch of chemistry in your brain, meddled with some instincts, covered with insanity and presented to idiots on a silver plate.

What a delightful madness to indulge in.

The Hitchhiker's guide to The Galaxy has this much to say on love - "avoid at all costs necessary".
Greatking
"God is Love", but how do we define it? The American Heritage Dictionary defines love as "an intense affection for another person based on familial or personal ties".

Often this "intense affection" stems from a sexual attraction for that other person. We love other people, or we say we love other people, when we are attracted to them and when they make us feel good.

Notice that a key phrase in the dictionary definition of love is the phrase "based on". This phrase implies that we love conditionally; in other words, we love someone because they fulfill a condition that we require before we can love them.

How many times have you heard or said, "I love you because you are cute;" or "I love you because you take good care of me;" or "I love you because you are fun to be with"?
Greatking
Our love is not only conditional, it is also mercurial. We love based on feelings and emotions that can change from one moment to the next.

The divorce rate is extremely high in today's society because husbands and wives supposedly stop loving one another-or they "fall out of love".

They may go through a rough patch in their marriage, and they no longer "feel" love for their spouse, so they call it quits.

Evidently, their marriage vow of "till death do us part" means they can part at the death of their love for their spouse rather than at their physical death.

Can anyone really comprehend "unconditional" love? It seems the love that parents have for their children is as close to unconditional love as we can get without the help of God's love in our lives.


We continue to love our children through good times and bad, and we don't stop loving them if they don't meet the expectations we may have for them.

We make a choice to love our children even when we consider them unlovable; our love doesn't stop when we don't "feel" love for them.

This is similar to God's love for us, but as we shall see, God's love transcends the human definition of love to a point that is hard for us to comprehend.
jeffryjon
Wonderful post Greatking.

The unconditional kind of love is what we need to strive for and it's a seemingly endless road.
pentangeli
It's putting another before yourself, because you want or need to. It's a small generalizing definition but it covers both platonic and non platonic love and being that the two can be very different, it's probably the only one that does.
omale55
Love can be defined as an emotion of strong affection and personal attachment.

In ancient Greek, there are different types of love. but i think there are two basic types Agape and Eros

Agape love is the pure love. it is the type of love that was exhibited by Jesus Christ when He came to die for the sins of mankind. it is the unselfish love of others. it is the type of love that ought to be exhibited by human beings to one another. it is pure, selfless, charitable and forgiving.

Eros love is passionate love. this is also known as love of the body. it is the love of man and woman (sexual love).
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