Subject: Re: Speaking of love...
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (RevLurch)
Date: Sat, 11 Apr 1998 19:39:10 GMT
bg19354@NoMoReSpAm.binghamton.edu (Nully Fydyan) wrote:
>Yes, well, I know we weren't, but we are now.
>I recently had a not very satisfying conversation with a friend about what
>love is, how one defines it, the different permutations and degrees of it.
>This friend believed that loving someone means being willing to die for
>the person, and I countered that love means that the person's happiness is
>as important to you as your own. But I'm not sure either definition
>suffices. I'm SURE his doesn't, and I think mine is pretty weak.
it's a bullshit term. Essentially meaningless and impossible to
define. But, in practice, it generally means that one person's
dependence on, enjoyment of and/or fondness for another person (we'll
leave critters out of it. How many people claim to be willing to die
for THIER CATS, even though they claim to "love" them?) is sufficient
to override the INVARIABLY maddening downside to remaining in their
company. And sure, this should involve caring about whether or not
they are happy, hopefully as much as you care for your own happiness.
But what the hell does happy mean? At what price should we purchase
happiness or try to secure it for our "love" interest? Is
self-delusion okay as long as it makes the practitioner HAPPY? Should
your mate's character faults be overlooked or even indulged in fear of
making him or her UNHAPPY? No answer to any of this shit. Gotta play
it by ear. But I think the hearts-and-flowers notions about what this
meaningless term should mean, and the INEVITABLE failure of the
reality to live up to those gloriosky expectations engendered by the
swoony "you'll hear hear bells" definitions is a BIG reason why most
people CAN'T manage to stay in long term relationships. Men and women
are just people. AND they all fuck up.
Just the same, as long as there is a core of genuine feeling to it
all, as long as you stay with a person because you WANT to, as opposed
to doing so because you fear the alternatives, as long as you miss a
person when he or she is not there, and are glad to see them when they
reappear, are comfortable with spending the rest or your life with
them and passing up whatever shots you may or may not have for some
horizontal gratification with others just for that privilege, then I
guess love is a good a term as any to apply to what you feel.
But I do think (in most cases) the domination of one's thinking
processes with thoughts of another is just obsession (usually rooted
in lust), and it fades with time. And a willingness to stay with a
person "for better or for worse" is just plain gutless stupidity (what
if he becomes a slobbery drunk, fucks around, lies, and beats the
living shit out of you?).
Anyway. But this is not to say one wouldn't be willing to die for the
person they feel even my cynically defined sort of "love" for, but a
lot of people make that claim secure in the belief that they will
never have to prove it. Fact is, nobody really knows how they will
react in life or death situations until they are in one. Some end up
being more courageous than they could have ever imagined themselves
being, others fall apart over trivialities and lose both the person
they claimed such "love" for long before being in the running for a
such a silly, slim and hypothetical chance to prove it.
It all is what it is. Could say you'll know it when you feel it, but
how the fuck would I know what anybody else will feel? Language is a
decent tool for certain kinds of communication, but for the most part,
it is of limited utility for defining ANYTHING we feel rather than
observe. Sometimes it's not even all that useful for the latter.
ah, fuck it.
(then you'll know. HONK)