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Steve
11th April 10, 04:30 AM
Is it just what you tell your significant other when you go to bed... That you love them?

Is it what you tell your kids when you say that you would do anything for them... even die for them?

Is it the religions of the world we live in that tell us to love a God or gods because they know what's best for you?

Or is it the science and logic that says it is only a matter of chemical and electrical interactions that make you feel that... "emotion."

Would you be willing to tell your most loved friend that it was all just based on nothing outside of the scientifically explained? Would you be able to say that it was just random and could feel the same way about another... To their face?

The fact that love exists is a problem for me when it comes to purely scientific explanations. Surely self preservation was key to our survival as a species, but the cockroach has succeeded much more than we have in that department. We fuck for multiple purposes. We are the only "animals" that do so for extraordinarily complex reasons. The only thing that might stop us from fucking like crazy is....

Maybe love.

So what is love?

inventory
11th April 10, 04:49 AM
it's a word. don't get too hung up in language.

Steve
11th April 10, 05:08 AM
it's a word. don't get too hung up in language.

Thanks, and what is your definition of "it" (since I can't use the word anymore).

inventory
11th April 10, 05:39 AM
you can use the word of course :p
in fact, you are. my guess would be (no offense) that english is the only language you speak?

it's very hard to think outside the learned patterns layed out by language. you probably heard that the inuit have, like, 26 words for different kinds of snow and ice but not one for "snow", while the aztec had only one word meaning both "snow" and "ice" in all forms. language makes you aware of certain things. every language also has its blind spots- things it can't quite describe. when an aztec sees firn, he'll think it's snow because that's the only thing he can CALL it. when an english-speaker feels affection for someone, he may well feel inclined to label his emotions "love". y'know?

Kiko
11th April 10, 05:47 AM
Oh, Steve. You're still searching? DAYoung can tell you what the philosophers think about love. I think I'll start with this.

http://www.loveistheonlyrationalact.com/Untitled-1.jpg

inventory
11th April 10, 06:03 AM
and why are unicorns hollow?

Ajamil
11th April 10, 06:11 AM
Unicorns aren't hollow - only their horns are so they can play music through them.

I need to drive to Fredrick, but I'll get back to this tonight.

Kiko
11th April 10, 06:15 AM
They're as fictional as unicorns, but the drow have no word for love. That should explain as much as why inuit have so many words for ice and snow.

Look, Steve asked a legitimate and I'd say pretty important question. There's plenty of threads here to troll. Why not pick one of the other ones?

bob
11th April 10, 06:45 AM
Love is waiving the pre-nup. Sad but true.

Fearless Ukemi
11th April 10, 06:48 AM
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Kiko
11th April 10, 08:19 AM
QE61Bz7IHKg

Yes, it's 80's, but there's some glimmers of answer in there.

Phrost
11th April 10, 09:29 AM
Love is the condition where another's happiness is essential to your own.

Arhetton
11th April 10, 09:34 AM
I think there is a difference between the love one has for ones own family versus the obsessive romantic love that is often the focus of pop culture.

There is a variety of love, and different kinds of love. Love that endures etc.

To think that love somehow transcends the universe is begging to be slapped down. It is a human experience.

I don't know enough about brain science and I imagine the average person doesn't either, so the idea of an explanation for a powerful emotion has a visceral response (eww yuck your numbers/science can't explain my teenage boyfriend , we are in LOVE dammit and he's going to be the best daddy of my unborn child).

Lol.

The idea of reducing human experience and consciousness to cause and effect bothers me, primarily because I believe in free will - ie. that I can choose who to love, and why. But is there a mechanical explanation of how love works? I certainly think so.

Lebell
11th April 10, 10:27 AM
here you go:nsCXZczTQXo

HappyOldGuy
11th April 10, 12:16 PM
Love is the condition where another's happiness is essential to your own.

I'm partial to this one. The emotional stuff is fuzzy and changes all the time, but when someone is important enough to me that I will suffer for their happiness, that's love.

Robot Jesus
11th April 10, 12:56 PM
come now,we're no strangers to love; you know the rules and so do I. A full commitment's what I'm thinking of, you wouldn't get this from any other guy.
I just wanna tell you how I'm feeling; Gotta make you understand! I'm never gonna give you up, let you down, run around and desert you. I'm never gonna make you cry, never gonna say goodbye, never gonna tell a lie and hurt you.

Kishi
11th April 10, 01:05 PM
I tend to think of 1 Corinthians 13, myself. Not necessarily on account of the fact that it's Scripture, but on account of how it describes love - not as an emotional state but as a constant commitment.

Leastways, that's how I read it.

Robot Jesus
11th April 10, 01:30 PM
now my non trolling answer

I think phrost has the truth of it, but I feel that the pop culture has ruined a great many people for the real thing.

there's a paragraph from the book Sex Drugs and Coco Puffs that really cut to the core of it. "I will never be satisfied with a woman, and no woman will ever be satisfied with me. one day I will recant this statement, but I will be lying. from the day I was born I have been conditioned to long for a very specific in a relationship, we all have been; the specifics vary, but in the end we all go into a relationship thinking we know what we want. and we are wrong. it's hard not to, what percent of successful relationship you have observed are fictional? I'm guessing it's somewhere in the 90% range, and where those stories created to reflect reality? now we could blame everyone, which would be meaningless; or we could blame no one, which would be cowardly. so I'm going to blame John Cusack" he then goes onto describe a relationship he had with a girl that was doomed before it began because what she was already in love with John Cusack's performance in various romantic comedies.

I think the author was overstating things, but I think our cultures obsession with obsessive "love", love at first sight, falling ass over teakettle, ect. is detrimental to normal healthy relationships. instead of seeing what we have, we try to make it into something it's not.

Doritosaurus Chex
11th April 10, 02:10 PM
L2BjJbKQkgc

HappyOldGuy
11th April 10, 03:06 PM
elgXiZ3w_wg

Ajamil
11th April 10, 08:21 PM
Phrost has it. Love is putting someone else's happiness - not before yours, but as a prerequisite for yours.

Love is driving to Fredrick to get chemical burns stripping paint off a glider wing when you don't care about Fredrick, gliding, the plane, the wing, or the paint...and not minding the burns. (Welcome, Mom.)

Mmm, chemical burns...
http://28.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_kr7pjuFTA11qa1cmoo1_500.png

TheMightyMcClaw
11th April 10, 10:16 PM
I consider "love" a pretty useless term, when it comes to any sort of serious discussion. It has so many different implications depending on who's speaking and what the situation it, that the word is all but stripped of functional meaning.

MEGA JESUS-SAMA
11th April 10, 10:41 PM
^ virgin

WarPhalange
11th April 10, 11:47 PM
Love is the condition where another's happiness is essential to your own.

I like this definition, but I don't think it's enough. I'm happy for my friends or even random strangers when good things happen to them. You might say I love my friends in a platonic way, sure, but I know I don't love everyone in the world. =/

Aphid Jones
12th April 10, 12:22 AM
"Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends."

To presuppose that love has no basis outside emotion is to assume that it cannot be fulfilled and defined through action, rather than the experience of physiological emotion.

Harpy
12th April 10, 01:28 AM
Steve. Why do you want to 'define' love? Why do you want to put a limit on it?

Steve
12th April 10, 01:48 AM
Saying something is "limitless" is still a definition, Lily.

mrblackmagic
12th April 10, 09:01 AM
Love is a few milligrams of oxytocin and some electricity associated with different people.

Fearless Ukemi
12th April 10, 09:33 AM
When love becomes obsession, is it still love?

I think it's a fine line bwtween love and obsession. Phrost's defenition is a very good one, but can certainly apply to both.


edit
Actually, I take that back.... Obsession is more based on yourself and your own happiness than the other person's.

Ajamil
12th April 10, 09:40 AM
So what causes the chemical reaction to happen making us feel love with some people and not with others? Proper pheremone receptors?

Lebell
12th April 10, 10:51 AM
love is a horrible thing.
cos when you have it it binds you to this world.

yesterday i went through the freezing cold to the other side of town to bring my gf her phone she left at my place.
just to see her smile at me and kiss me makes it worth it.

thats retarded and annoying but i cant help it.
love has to do with helplessnes, you cant help to <enter personal situation>.

the best thing is to stay away from it cos it messes with your life and plans.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
12th April 10, 11:06 AM
For love to be a definable 'thing' it has to make sense.

It does not, therefore any attempts to have a definitive answer to "What is love?" will ultimatley fail.

Ajamil
12th April 10, 11:15 AM
What part of love doesn't make sense to you?

KO'd N DOA
12th April 10, 11:22 AM
Love is Evol spelled backwards. A bitter nasty thing in retrospect.

Phrost
12th April 10, 11:24 AM
I like this definition, but I don't think it's enough. I'm happy for my friends or even random strangers when good things happen to them. You might say I love my friends in a platonic way, sure, but I know I don't love everyone in the world. =/

The key word is "essential". Just as there are varying degrees of love, there are varying degrees of how essential someone's happiness is to you.

By the way, it's not my definition, just the best one I've seen. And yeah, it's Heinlein.


"Love" is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.

Jealousy is a disease, love is a healthy condition. The immature mind often mistakes one for the other, or assumes that the greater the love, the greater the jealousy.

mrblackmagic
12th April 10, 01:16 PM
So what causes the chemical reaction to happen making us feel love with some people and not with others? Proper pheremone receptors?

A lot of things factor in.

As far as internal chemistry, serotonin usually determines whether we "like" somebody and cortisol gives us the opposite effect.

Strangely, Oxytocin is chiefly associated with "bonding." In conjunction with the other two, could go either way.

Harpy
12th April 10, 05:21 PM
Saying something is "limitless" is still a definition, Lily.

A poor definition.

FickleFingerOfFate
12th April 10, 05:28 PM
Love is a hormonal reaction, chemically indistinguishable from eating large quantities of chocolate.

Steve
12th April 10, 05:38 PM
A poor definition.

Don't look at me, you were the one that brought up limits.

One of the things that got me thinking about this was my recent thread on morality and brain stimulation. Possible "love potion" or a way to make people fall out of love on the horizon? You'd think those crafty scientists wouldn't stop their tests until they've tried it all...

Cullion
12th April 10, 05:58 PM
C.S. Lewis said something very simillar to Heinlein, when he said


Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained

I'm going to read this soon

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/b/b2/The_Four_Loves.JPG

Aphid Jones
12th April 10, 08:15 PM
Good read.

Aphid Jones
12th April 10, 08:16 PM
So what causes the chemical reaction to happen making us feel love with some people and not with others? Proper pheremone receptors?
Are you talking about sexual/romantic love only, then?

Ajamil
12th April 10, 11:35 PM
I was asking in relation to this:

Love is a few milligrams of oxytocin and some electricity associated with different people.
You would have to ask mrblackmagic. Although I bet you could say fraternal love works the same way, but for a different reason.

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
13th April 10, 04:15 AM
What part of love doesn't make sense to you?

If I knew that then it would make sense.

Kiko
13th April 10, 02:10 PM
I'm going to read this soon

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/b/b2/The_Four_Loves.JPG

Why is he going to garrote that poor woman with that sheet? That's got nothing to do with love.... or have I been doing it wrong all this time??

Angry Mandrill
13th April 10, 02:12 PM
Love is a few milligrams of oxycontin and some electrodes attached to different people.

http://www.everythingusb.com/hardware/resize.php?size=400&filename=simpsons_shock_therapy.jpg

Cullion
13th April 10, 02:12 PM
Why is he going to garrote that poor woman with that sheet? That's got nothing to do with love.... or have I been doing it wrong all this time??

Imagine that common sense tells him he should kill her, but he just can't bring himself to do it.

Romantic, no?

Kiko
13th April 10, 02:15 PM
Common sense? Maybe if she were facing him with some sort of weapon. No, he's been ORDERED to kill her, and he'll be struck by Cupid's arrow (unless of course that IS Cupid - in which case she's outta luck) and the sheet will be used for some other sorta kinky knotting.

Ajamil
13th April 10, 04:06 PM
She's lost her love, and is crawling towards the cliff face where he fell. The other man's familial love is compelling him to hold her back by any means necessary.

mrblackmagic
13th April 10, 04:15 PM
And you wonder why I prefer a mechanistic approach.