Definition of love
Have you ever wondered why we fall in love, not rise in love? and what do you think is love? When two humans like each other?
It all begins with a famous man, Sigmund Freud, and his idea of cathexis. The investment of your emotional energy into an object or person. Mostly to an extent that's unhealthy. Cathexis happens when we intently focus on the "falling in love" part of a relationship. Doing this can lead to a relationship, for a short time. And then it burns out quickly.
"To love another means to love yourself as well as the other person. "
Healthy self-esteem is a prerequisite for a healthy relationship. Psychology Today states that: "People with low self-esteem tend to underestimate their partner's love and view their partners in more negative terms, perhaps because they don't believe that 'a good person' could love them." This can also lead to less satisfaction with the relationship.
No matter whom we fall in love with, we sooner or later fall out of love if the relationship continues long enough. But is falling in love really love? In my opinion, it's the state we reach after it. Because you mostly don't have a choice in falling in love with someone, falling in love is effortless. Scott Peck in his book "The Road Less Traveled" states that love by definition for him is:
"The will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth."
He wants to say that it all comes down to growing, expanding horizons, being open and attaining spiritual growth. But also that the action of loving involves hard work and is much more important than the feeling, which is fleeting. So by focusing on the action of love you can attain a greater relationship.
Another widely common misconception is that people think, with their children but partners also, they have to be as they are. Doing what they love should be the thing the partner also loves. In my opinion that no expedient mindset to have.
“Love is separateness.”
Accept another individual personality and separate identity. If you depend on someone else, this is no more true love because it's not you free will to love one another, love is always free of will and can't be forced on a person. You should value the other person more than the relationship.
" Love is not effortless. To the contrary, love is effortful."
I hope that you got inspired by this short text on what love is. For me, understanding this concept was a crucial step to be able to build great relationships, in my family, with friends and partners. I can only recommend reading this book as it will shape your mindset on love but also religion, which I will cover in a later post. The next chapter is about parents and their children.
In fact, it happens that parents don't appreciate the uniqueness of their child, instead of extensions of themselves. You may have experienced this, too. Pushing them to things they never reached. Kahlil Gibran wrote a wonderful poet about this:
“Your children are not your children
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
for they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which
you cannot visit, not even in your dreams,
You may strive to be like them but seek not to make them like you.
For life does not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with HIs might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
for even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves
also, the bow that is stable.”
Every parent should read parent should read this poem before deciding to get a child. I think we all depend a lot on things we can not influence greatly. Like childhood. Childhood builds character and it will affect our whole life.
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