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Love:

Previous discussions:

I didn't know which one to continue so I'm making a new topic.

I'm too young to have felt "love" in a way others on this forum may have but I've felt a lot of other things and I do know that our experience of the world is biological, chemical, electrical, in its base nature. You can read stuff I've written in both of those topics, I still agree with it.

However my point now, to focus on, for those that recognize the electrochemical nature of our consciousness, do you think love in humans is different from love in animals? Why or why not?

And if you don't fall in the above camp (due to religious dogma most likely) then how is your definition of love different from mine and do you think it's an infinite thing?

In other words I want to know if you're a 'love cynic' or a 'love believer' and why :P And remember that your brain can fool you. If you take MDMA and fall in love with a painting on the wall does that count as love in its special way? :wub: lol

Edited by unreality
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Posted · Report post

I think love is relative.

Everyone is capable of "true" love but not all "true" love takes the same form.

Some may love exclusively and completely 1 person for both of their lifes, while others may love a person but also love others.

Icidently for me love has been elusive. I have loved and still do love, but it has never been enough to conquer all...

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Well, do they have studies on love in animals? Scientifically speaking, people are just very advanced animals, right?

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Well, do they have studies on love in animals? Scientifically speaking, people are just very advanced animals, right?

yes, scientifically speaking, people are just advanced animals. But at the same time the technological and societal level of human advancement has put a whole new spin on human interpersonal relationships... I don't know how many other animals stick together for a lifelong relationship after their childbirth and childrearing jobs are done, but it seems unnatural to extend it that long. Maybe a few other species do? (Probably all of them mammals?). How many other animals have long-distance relationships? As far as I know, not many. I feel that the overlayer of human society has changed the way individuals in the society view something that was originally purely evolutionary.

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Which kind of love are you talking about?

The ancient Greeks used to have several words that expressed different types of love

Agápe (αγάπη agápē)

Éros (έρως érōs)

Philia (φιλία philía)

Storge (στοργή storgē)

and I still don't think any of this covers "Man, I'd love an ice-cream"

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Posted · Report post

Which kind of love are you talking about?

The ancient Greeks used to have several words that expressed different types of love

That's exactly the thing... most people can't even agree on a consistent definition.

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Now I'm hungry :(

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We humans like to think that we possess a 'deific' sort of love that enables us to altruistically act as stewards and protectors of other species.

Cynics would argue that the 'tree huggers' just want that personal, selfish emotional reinforcement that they can claim to be 'holier than thou'. They would argue that nobody truly acts out of purely selfless love. They are right. Humans are intrinsically selfish.

But ... Mothers of many species will endanger themselves to protect their young. This comes as close to purely selfless love as anything I know. It is not the individual that true love emerges from, it is the selfless ancestral *Force* of the greater community - the social cooperation that enables the whole to be greater than the sum of its parts. That is why I look to the 'mother of the universe' as the ultimate expression of pure love.

No individual acts selflessly. The purest love is manifest in, and expressed by the greater commmunion of participating individuals. Traditionally religion has championed this cause, and many religions have established a symbolic deity to represent this ideal form of love. Unfortunately religions also get bogged down in the human frailties of their followers, and lose the plot. But do we have a better model for the true purity of love?

The Buddha was notable for his unbounded compassion. Jesus was sent and sacrificed because 'God so loved the world' (John 3:16).

Discuss.

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If you take MDMA and fall in love with a painting on the wall does that count as love in its special way? :wub: lol

Hahaha. You know it broski.

I still stick to the chemical definition. Yay dopamine and serotonin (and ketamine and norepinephrine!) ((I *think* those are song lyrics. The ketamine is questionable, but it first syllably.. :unsure:)) ..But I digress.

Love is very "real", if you want to delude yourself. Which I encourage, it's nice to have that tingly feeling and forced smile whenever you're around the person you like. I'd assume we're the same as animals, if not a little more advanced. Some animals mate for life, and this is evolutionarily stupid for the males, considering it downs there chances of reproductive success. Ergo, love!

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I think one of the reasons LOVE is such a hard concept to define is that we give it so many meanings, which may be alike or not. Like you might "love" ice-cream, but not in the same way you "love" your son/sibling, and I bet you don't love them as you "love" your pet.

Can't finish this post right now, but I might continue later.... Damn work :dry:

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the fallign in "love" with a painting thing isnt love its more like obsession or infatuation.

having said that i agree that love is hard to define. it is more than inatuation, obsession or lust, stonger but less intense, if that makes sense.

About males mating for life being stupid izzy i have to partially disagree i think it is just as silly if not more so for females to mate for life. it reduces their chance of carrying on their lineage as much, if not more so than for men.

As to human love being different than animal love i have to say no. many animals mate for life, is a good example. However i would like to use a more personal and emotional arguement. Ask any pet owner if they love their pets and if their pets love them the answer will almost always be yes (there are a few mean pets out there :) )

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About males mating for life being stupid izzy i have to partially disagree i think it is just as silly if not more so for females to mate for life. it reduces their chance of carrying on their lineage as much, if not more so than for men.

Er, no. Consider the animal kingdom. Females, once impregnated, have to carry and then raise their youth, which is facilitated by the help of their male partners. Once pregnant, it's unlikely she'll get pregnant again while still pregnant. Considering JUST offspring here, one female human can have about one child a year (a little more if multiples are taken into account), while males can go out, and if fertile, impregnate as many women as they can score. When women mate for life, statistically, their chances of raising healthy offspring is increased (totally not ragging on single moms here, I believe it has more to do with the stability of a home than the amount of parents, but the amount of adult figures in a child's life certainly contributes), so it's in their best interest to stay with their man. For men, this is technically also true, but the more women they copulate with, the even greater their chances are for successful offspring.

By animals, I meant like penguins. I know it's a little different for humans, and as a species with already a larger population than ideal, obviously I don't support the above. :P

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When women mate for life, statistically, their chances of raising healthy offspring is increased

actually this is not true. though the 9 month thing is true (for humans) there are a lot of other factors. for instance the more often a male has sex the lower his sperm count. so a woman during her fertile period having sex with multiple partners greatly increases her chances of becoming pregnant. A woman having sex all the time does not affect her chances of becoming pregnant but a man who has sex constantly reduces his. Yes i know he doesnt have to have sex constantly but lets face it hes a male if he can he will (obligatory sexist remark sorry) A man who constantly has sex with the same woman increases the chance that he will have have sex during the time a woman is fertile, with multiple woman there is the chance he will miss the fertile period. unless he is having sex with them all every day, but again sperm count decreases and well eventually hed just have a heart attack and die (die happy of course but still die) There is the whole sterility problem but that goes both ways. the more diversified the gene pool for a woman's (or a man's for that matter) the lesser the possibility of all children having the same genetic defects (yes i know if it comes from the woman it changes nothing but right away you are diversifying 50% of the gene pool. If your talking about mentally stable offspring as opposed to physically healthy offspring then your statemnet could have some merit but that also works for men as well.

On the whole the human race is roughly 50/50 male/female if say over her lifetime a woman can have say 20 children (arbitrary number), women having several men gives them best diversification. for men to have several women to increase the number over the 20 it means other men have to sire less than 20. so yeah 1 guy can father 200 kids but that means several others will never become fathers. good for the lucky guy, sucks for the others. if the women divesify then all can reach their potential 20 with maximum genetic mixing. which is on the whole best for all, genetic diversificationally speaking. that is why i said better for women, as it is better for the human race as a whole than just men being polygamous.

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Er, are you just making up statistics? Men dying from heart attacks from sex? Seriously?

It only takes 1-2 days for sperm to replenish. If what the man is *trying* to do is impregnate a chick, staying with the same partner for a month (assuming both are fertile) will yield a child.

The rest of your argument has no merit because genetic defects go both ways.

And hey, the dude is trying to have 200 kids. This is the real world. He doesn't care what's best for society, he has the evolutionary yearning to ensure his lineage is conserved.

Also, twenty women each caring for one child from the same father will create more healthy (physically and mentally) than one woman with twenty children all from different men. Not to just throw in the stereotypical gender roles here, but the mother's have to nurture their youth, at least to some extent. Twenty kids? Foo' you trippin'.

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@Izzy: If as you say the feelings we describe as love are either electro-chemically driven or socially driven what room is there for free choice?

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the men dying from heart attacks wa a joke,

yes genetic defects go both ways but if a woman (or a man) keeps the same partner then there is the chance that genetic defects will be passed on so yes arguement goes both ways. what i'm saying is that genetically speaking it is better to spread the gene pool.

my point on the sperm is for a woman 1-2 days is still 1-2 days. and statistically speaking it is still a factor.

the point of the 20 kids (it was an arbitrary number to just show the point) was to show that as a species, not individually, polygamy genetically makes sense. Often what is good for an individual is not necessarily good for the species as a whole.

why would a woman having 20 kids from same man have healthier kids than from 20 different men? you make statement as if it is fact but again genetically speaking it makes no sense. If you are talking about societal development of the kids that is another matter.

When women mate for life, statistically, their chances of raising healthy offspring is increased (totally not ragging on single moms here, I believe it has more to do with the stability of a home than the amount of parents, but the amount of adult figures in a child's life certainly contributes),

You realize if you inverse the words women and men in that sentence it means exactly the same thing. ie if a woman mates for life to 1 man then that means a man mates for life with 1 woman. polygamy being illegal in north america, and only practised by an very small minority, there is ample proof of all kinds of problems with the children in these polygamous families.

side. i think this is why i like this forum people always go off topic in interesting ways. not completely way out or stuff just slightly off topic

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@Izzy: If as you say the feelings we describe as love are either electro-chemically driven or socially driven what room is there for free choice?

Not a lot. Our choice is pretty much limited to whether or not we decide to act on our feelings. You can control who you love no more than you can control the types of food that you think taste good. You can resist foods you like about as much as you can people you like. ...It sucks.

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Hahaha. You know it broski.

I still stick to the chemical definition. Yay dopamine and serotonin (and ketamine and norepinephrine!) ((I *think* those are song lyrics. The ketamine is questionable, but it first syllably.. :unsure:)) ..But I digress.

Love is very "real", if you want to delude yourself. Which I encourage, it's nice to have that tingly feeling and forced smile whenever you're around the person you like. I'd assume we're the same as animals, if not a little more advanced. Some animals mate for life, and this is evolutionarily stupid for the males, considering it downs there chances of reproductive success. Ergo, love!

Last part may or may not apply, depending on ratio of males and females. Also, there are only so many resources in any given area, so over-reproducing could be bad. There are of course the chemicals, but I believe devotion is a learned trait, going along with morals. For instance, there was a nice guy who was working on putting pipes in something, and the pressure built up and shot the pipe through his brain. He lived, but he became mean and selfish, leaving people to believe that such was the default, and kindness was learned. (Pipe passed through whatever part of the brain is in charge of morals)

EDIT:

Just noticed this other quote of Izzy's,

I know it's a little different for humans, and as a species with already a larger population than ideal, obviously I don't support the above

so she already took that part into consideration. Lol when I saw 'Last Post: izzy Topic: love' I was preparing myself for a really long post :lol: . No offense to izzy (I personally would take that as a compliment, otherwise I wouldn't say it).

Edited by NickFleming
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Woah, just saw this topic and found it weird......:lol::D

My thoughts: There is love in many forms, and 'true' love is one of them...

I can say that I love icecream (to eat).......but it's love for food.....or I love music, or I love parties, etc.

Then higher level; I love my school, I love my job, I love my wealth, etc....different and higher because it's on a slightly enclosed scale...

Then there's love between couples; very close to the top, only separated because of the whole BF-GF thing and dating, etc. can be considered as true love, but only if it's for life......

The top level is love for friends, family, neighbours, etc. [and of course, God for us religious: others, stay out of this one....:P]....this I consider to be True Love because it's not all about flowers and candy....... :D :D

Love for life and heart and soul is a whole different level......why? well, why not? It's basically a collection of the above, right??? and of course, yourself... :D

Animals do have similar emotions for love, but theirs is not as complex.....it's true love all the way; for all, it's equal... :D

Love is infinite; the only thing that stands in the way of love is vice, evil and temptation. So be careful...:D

umm...other than that, there isn't much to say..... :D

Edited by EDM
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Extra:

Infatuations with chemicals isn't love: it just happens to give similar emotions, but it's never complete......science, although great, can't describe love......but we can..... :D:wub:

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At what point exactly did you decide science can't describe love? Paraphrasing Wiki:

It's been shown that love is a mammalian drive, similar to hunger and thirst occurring in three stages: lust, attraction, and attachment. Increased testosterone and estrogen levels spark the initial lust. Recent studies in neuroscience have indicated that as people fall in love, the brain consistently releases a certain set of chemicals, including pheromones, dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin, which act in a manner similar to amphetamines, stimulating the brain's pleasure center and leading to side effects such as increased heart rate, loss of appetite and sleep, and an intense feeling of excitement. Attachment is the bonding that promotes relationships lasting for many years and even decades, has been linked to higher levels of the chemicals oxytocin and vasopressin to a greater degree than short-term relationships have. Studies have shown that brain scans of those infatuated by love display a resemblance to those with a mental illness. Love creates activity in the same area of the brain where hunger, thirst, and drug cravings create activity.

So, MDMA, or 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine stimulates the brain similarly to dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine. When someone uses it, it actually dumps all their serotonin, and replaces it with MDMA, because the brain prefers it. Of course, this is bad, because the MDMA presence is only temporary and the serotonin levels need to be rebuilt (which takes time). Consequently, MDMA users have a recovery period when they're pretty depressed, and anything from loving. Ergo, the absence of serotonin caused this, meaning it is, without a doubt, an agent of love.

EVERYTHING in life is chemical. Moreover, just because science can't describe something (which most certainly isn't the case here), you don't automatically default to being right at science's expense. :rolleyes: If a five year old described love as a phenomenon occurring because a magical dragon turned the enchanted tree into ashes and pixies fly around sprinkling this dust on everyone, well, she isn't right. Now, if she's proven to be wrong, and a little boy instead says "Oh, no, it's the gnomes that dispense the ash!", he isn't right just because the girl was wrong. He's just as wrong as she is. ...Though, that's possibly a bad analogy because science actually knows what it's talking about and isn't merely speculating.. meh.

Longish (eh, not really) post. Enjoy, Nick. :P

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:duh::rolleyes:

2 things:

1. You misinterpreted me and I'm not interested in stupid chemicals.......plus, i'm a science student myself; so I don't have a problem with it.....:P:D

2. Love and Lust are 2 Separate things, interconnected by a few thin strands; When I say science can't describe love, i'm talking about our decisions and our choices about how much we love someone;

for e.g: If you had to choose between your family and your BF/GF, would you chose your family? It may be much easier to dump the person you're dating and to stick to your folks, right? (though it's probably gonna be a tough decision if the person's the love of your life.....)

Love is all about emotion and feelings; lust is the rest of it.......you can't say that chemicals can create 'love', but you can say that they create the feelings of lust and infatuation, etc.

The brain may be able to handle many aspects, but even if a person is unable to think clearly, the emotions still exist; we may just see it differently.....

*oh, and science, although quite right in many respects, can speculate as well.......it starts with assumption and speculation and theories, which people try to prove or disprove......so i'm basically right in one way....the way i was talking about.....:P:D

New Question to you, Izzy: Have you ever fallen in love before? have you ever dated, and do you Love your family??? think about that and read what i've said.......:D

and most things in life are scientific, not chemical alone....some things are spiritual, too (though you'll probably blow up another list of chemicals to prove your point; which makes me think that you're the type of person who always wants to have the last word and be right all the time......:rolleyes:)

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1.Then explain what you meant, because you weren't very clear."Science can't explain it, but we can" really seems to imply some sort of religious explanation, meaning you're taking it entirely on faith, and are, beyond a reasonable doubt, wrong.

Chemicals aren't stupid. Chemicals literally make up your every action and every thought you think. Every choice you make is determined by a balance of chemicals in your brain. They control every emotion, including love, btw.

2. Lust is a part of love, of course they aren't the same thing. Well, sexual love, anyway. Obviously "Oh, I love my cat" has no part in that sort of love, but that isn't what this thread is discussing, so the point is irrelevant. It depends on the situation. If my family dislikes my bf/gf to the extent that they're trying to separate me from him/her, I'm going to choose my partner over them, because they're being intolerant morons. If it's like "Your plane is on fire.. you can save one person", then *shrugs* I'd rather not think about it.

...What. Yes, chemicals create the feelings of love, and we call these feelings "love", ergo chemicals create love? I don't understand where you were going with that.

You weren't right whatsoever (with this statement: "Infatuations with chemicals isn't love: it just happens to give similar emotions, but it's never complete"). Yeah, it starts as speculation, but science has gotten to the point where they can explain love, and it's all backed up by models, and has been crafted into a theory. If it were wrong, it would die under scrutiny. ..It hasn't.

Have I fallen in love? Eh. Sort of, but I don't want to talk about it because it's complicated and didn't have a very happy ending. =/ I've dated, and yeah, I love my family. I wasn't arguing about what you were saying about the levels of love. I understand that, I was just saying that since the chemicals form the emotions, of course the emotions are complete. Look, EVERYTHING in our life is chemical, and science is the tool we use to figure these things out. If everything we've ever observed, in the history of observance is chemical, why would love be exempt from this? It has a chemical explanation that makes complete sense, so what doesn't make sense is to ignore the explanation and come up with something you think is better for the sake of doing so. (By all means, questioning the standard for further scientific inquiry is an *awesome* thing, but in cases where we already know full well what's going on, it's a massive waste of time.)

Spiritual? Yeah? Prove it. It has nothing to do with having the last word or me being right. If I *am* right, obviously I'll spread the rightness. If I'm wrong, so be it.

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Not a lot. Our choice is pretty much limited to whether or not we decide to act on our feelings.

Talking from personal experience initially this choice is very significant (before everything get :wacko:). Yes, sometimes the feelings will influence your choices, but also your choices (or other peoples choices for those in a pre-arranged marriage scenario) will influence your feelings.

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Izzy, i knew you were gonna do something like this.....;):D

anyway, although the chemicals are responsible for the infatuations and stuff, they aren't necessarily the basis of love, are they? that's what i'm trying to say.....it's YOUR choice whether you love someone, not the chemicals.......chocolate has been proven to create the feelings of love (or something like that).....does that actually MEAN that we're in love? NO!!! :lol: see where i'm going with this....???

sry 'bout the create love bit....i meant create the feelings......:blush:

I never expected you to get the spiritual bit, so let's just stick to the scientific point for now......science is too.......practical. Love stories aren't based on chemicals. They are usually based on life.......circumstances......and unfortunately, math.....:)

*You know...whenever we get into these discussions, i always feel like it's better to talk on the phone, or something. It's a lot easier to explain stuff.......plus, i'm a terrible writer/typer, as you've probably noticed........:unsure: *

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anyway, although the chemicals are responsible for the infatuations and stuff, they aren't necessarily the basis of love, are they? that's what i'm trying to say.....it's YOUR choice whether you love someone, not the chemicals.......chocolate has been proven to create the feelings of love (or something like that).....does that actually MEAN that we're in love? NO!!! :lol: see where i'm going with this....???

*You know...whenever we get into these discussions, i always feel like it's better to talk on the phone, or something. It's a lot easier to explain stuff.......plus, i'm a terrible writer/typer, as you've probably noticed........:unsure: *

Bro you have no control over whether or not you love someone. Your entire personality (from the sports you like, to intellect, and yes, love) is predetermined by your genetic make up, and there's no way to get over this. It's why you laugh at the jokes you think are funny and why you like certain colors more than other. (Okay, there's also a nurture component, but its influence here is limited.) It's your choice whether or not you act on your feelings, but it's not your choice if you love someone, because you're a victim of chance. Think about the people you've liked over the years, and notice the similarities. They aren't similar by coincidence, you and everyone else are attracted to a certain type of person (the specific qualities can be anything, from intelligence to hair length) because of your DNA.

I'll take your point the pseudo-love from chocolate and drugs doesn't mean you're in love because it's a temporary effect, but with MDMA (far more than chocolate), the brain activity is almost indistinguishable, and for that period of time, you *are* in love.

Haha, I know what you mean. Sometimes it's just like "Screw it, I'll make a video post.."

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