Is love a phenomena? A medical condition? Or merely biological conditioning? Have you been in love?
Whether you think you have been in love, are in love, or want to be in love, it is universal experience to saviour at the least once in a lifetime. We promote love as though it is the highest plateau in human existence, that each and all should seek to climb to and rejoice upon. Yet how many of us acknowledge the painful truth? That being, that no matter how much we do love, or how much we pursue the course upon which love doth steer us, we all end up reeling from the experience, as one reels from the sting of an unexpected bee in a rose.
In my experience, love, loving and being in love leaves me with a bitter taste, rather like eating too much chocolate then staring at the package, chocolate stains on mouth, shirt and hands, and cursing my indulgence, "See it tasted good, but what does it leave you with? Huh girl all you are going to get is fat and pimply, and flatulance." Disgusting.
Love, why do we cherish it so much? Why do we exalt those who find, supposedly, this higher state of being? Do we commend those who swim in the ocean? After all it is big, wide and rather risky, yet it involves aquatic lifeforms, who by and large are willing to devour whole, us helpless human beings. And romance...now isn't that all about devouring? When in love we are willing to take risks, jump right on in, change ourselves to embrace new experiences, even whole entire worlds simply to remain the object of somebodies affection. Haven't you given your whole heart,mind,body and soul in the pursuit of love? At least the sharks and other big scary marine animals only take your body, and entirely for the purpose of enjoying a culinary delight.
However whether you believe love is a phenomena or part of our biological makeup, you will agree it is not always a pleasant experience. I have come to examine love from a detached perspective. And in doing so I conclude, as some scientists do, that love can be compared to a mental illness. Obsessively thinking about somebody, fantazing, hot flushes, feeling unable to complete normal daily tasks, crying, laughing, euphoria, depression, stalking, obsessing about body image,lack of appetite, overeating, spending like Paris Hilton....Oh really it is all too much. Do you really want to be in love? Hollywood has a lot to answer for in it's projection of the concept of love. Smiley, beautiful, abnormally happy and wholesome couples dancing under starry skies to a blissfully perfect soundtrack is hardly reminiscent of true love. Ideal maybe, but not realistic.
I have often heard that true love is more often than not a fleeting event. People can break down, momentarily, when discussing their "true love," the "one that got away," or "got taken by another." I think that ideal love does not guarantee a perfectly blissful life. Often in feeling the pangs of a deep and meaningful love for somebody it leads to greater expectations that are often unrealistic and can result in a sense of failure when life does not continue down the path of Hollywood perfection. Whilst that feeling of being in love does result in a sense of euphoria and wellbeing, human behaviour is more often than not unable to couple with such exalted heights.
Have you ever chosen career, family,money,personal inadequecies over the one you love?
How many times have you heard "Love" as being an excuse for infidelity. "I fell in love!" "I have never felt like this before?!" "She/He touched me in ways I never thought I would feel/experience/fathom possible." However it doesn't make the bitter reality of an affair any more plausible for the person who has to endure the humiliation.
In a relationship is love really a factor in the success of such a union? We often use love as a reason for our disagreements, failings and excuses for being less than human. "I love you that is why I hurt you." "I love you so much that is why I behave this way." "I love him/her that is why I stay in this (awful, horrible, devastating) relationship." I believe that if you had a business partner that beat, tormented, cheated and mentally tortured you, you would bail out in a second.
Arranged marriage is a good example of viewing the relationship as something that should be based upon stronger foundations than a feeling of love. Marriage has to endure so many experiences and hurdles that would make even the most able person shudder in fear. Arranged marriages take into account those factors which may stabilize the union of two complete strangers and steer them upon a relatively rock free path. For one thing the parents get a feeling of power and pride in their choice and the couple can enjoy the pleasure of seeing their parents happy, and after all there would be no arguments over, "How did you meet her?" or "What in the world were you thinking?"
Personally I would rather join a monastry than have an arranged marriage. I do not think my family would ever chose anybody that I would remotely be interested in sharing a matrimonial bed with let alone a hotel room. I think, sadly, for a lot of people dollars ring true r than wedding bells and personal compatibility for many matrimonial arrangements. All I can say is, the pen is mightier than the sword and a rich fathers pocket is far more appealing than a virginal, domestic doe eyed bride.
I know there will be Asian people out there saying, "what a load of rubbish! I am perfectly happy with my lot." Of course, love and reality are both blurred with the passing of time and the growth of children and waistlines.
We all tend to accept our lives the way they pan out or are panned out for us. If we were all revolutionaries the world would be even more embroiled in conflict.
Love burns brightly and then tends to be blown into the wind to mix and gel with the fabric of time. All we are left with is a memory of and a longing for that place in time when our human state seemed temporarily exalted beyond our limited comprehension of our own existence.
HJ POUDEL (copyright 2007)