Love means different things for different people; some confuse it with care, respect, and tenderness, while others look mistakenly for passion and lust, substituting them for love in their longings. But what is love in reality? Is love always connected with deep emotions and feelings? I believe that love as a feeling takes many forms and manifestations, but it can always be easily distinguished from everything named above. Love is much deeper than passion, since it is here to stay when passion goes; love is more than tenderness, which is quite a superficial manifestation thereof. In my opinion, love is a feeling of connectedness and care for another person that lasts for many years and becomes a part of a person’s identity.
The enigma surrounding love is that most people tend to consider it unexplainable, and at the same time look for explanations for many centuries. As Lindner (3) clarified, love is often associated with romance, while people in love act irrationally, in a childlike manner, and feel happy because of having their object of love in their lives. An important consideration about love is that mass media have strongly affected it within the past decades. Before the advent of TV and the Internet, people used to think about love in categories established in romance novels and poems, while at present, the public operates notions and images available in abundance in the Internet and films.
In the epoch of capitalism, many people have started thinking about love in commercial terms – images of huge flower bouquets, expensive cars and presents, travels to exotic countries, and other forms of monetary rewards are strongly associated with a deep feeling of love. However, this is a very distorted and corrupt image of love becoming an item that can be sold or bought rather than earned. For me, such images are senseless because love is much more about care that one person is able to provide to another one. In this aspect, I fully agree with the expressions of de Bezenac and de Bezenac (6) who tried to explain love through a child’s eyes. For a person not thinking in commercial categories, love means father’s reading of a fairy tale for his children, no matter how many times they want to hear it, and mother’s cooking of a tasty dinner no matter how tired she is after the working day. Love is embodied in simple caring acts rather than a hundred of sweet words; it is the readiness to come for help in hard situations, and an ability to listen patiently and soothe the loved one in the times of hardship and trouble. It is also an ability to set aside selfish, egoistic wishes and let the loved person be who he or she is, without any constraints and pressure.
Thus, as one can see, the image of what love is and love’s actual life manifestations differ profoundly. For this reason, people guided by commercialized images of love may fail to find their personal happiness simply because they cannot identify the genuine feeling and have wrong expectations about it. A truly loving and caring relationship is first of all selfless and self-sacrificing, which is much more precious than material virtues and passionate expressions of romance popularized in mass media.
De Bezenac, Agnes, and Salem de Bezenac. What Is Love: Examples of Love and Selflessness. iCharacter, 2012. Print.
Lindner, Matthias. What Is Love: Are Love and Romance Nothing but Socially Constructed? Berlin, Germany: GRIN Verlag, 2005. Print.
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