It’s a big topic for sure. Of course, it’s like art, music, philosophy & other ways of expression, open to interpretation. From my own perspective, and I mentioned it here in a previous blog,  Time Machine – Any Year, “Love is an uncertain & unsteady bridge – You cannot rely on it.” That is just my logical warning, from experience, but not a disclaimer to avoid the feeling.

Basically, you accept another person on faith and trust, based mainly on a feeling and cross a bridge without really knowing what is on the other side or even if you can survive the crossing. This is the risk of Love, in essence, and while it does feel oh so good, it is an irrational act. Some have argued that Love is a form of mental illness, but I am not sure about that. The mental pathways in the brain associated with Love and Hate are intimately connected, however, and although they seem to be polar opposite in emotion, they reside in the same place physically.

Perhaps there is something to the concept of “a thin line between love and hate?” The brain is a dynamic thing and I have always believed it wires itself to how you feel. Reason is always the guiding principle, if listened to, and this helps guide feeling. I think a perfect harmony is feeling letting reason know it needs attention, and reason letting feeling know it needs understanding. Well, I don’t want to make this a soft sell, and basically you are composed of what you think and feel – and the center of who you are arranges everything. Who is the center of who you are? In the 17th century, some believed a person began life a preformed human being, a Humonculous (latin for “little man”). As we grew and asserted our own will, there was still the “little man” inside each of us who pulled all the strings – a part of us, the driving force in opportunity for pleasure: love, hate, obsession, greed, etc. Well, this is just a story in parable that man is driven more by emotion than intellect and must construct some reason to understand it. We have the benefit of living in the 21st century and don’t need that kind of superstition.

But, I stray from my topic and neglect answering the question: “What is Love?” Pure and simple, it is a feeling, and don’t ever expect to understand it, by logic, reason, or medical science. It is a state of being, just like day is day and night is night. It is irrational, and wonderfully so, but it has a dark side too, when it turns to hate, spite, resentment and callous abandonment. I’ve seen it from both sides and can attest to its power to inspire and destroy. I like the words of Judy Collins in her song “Both Sides Now”:

I’ve seen love from both sides, have known the joy it brings and the inspiration it provides in life, and have known the terrible trials it can sink to in spite, animosity, retribution and pain. On balance I have to say the pain in my life has been greater than the joy, but I am hopeful I can turn that balance around again one day to come – in my favor! Yes, I retain a romantic vision – living a life in love with mutual understanding, sharing friendship, giving respect, and supporting each other to the end of our days. Is this just fantasy? Perhaps, but it’s a wonderful fantasy and songs, film & poetry continue to inspire us towards that. Love, and what it is, maybe is not so important as who you are and what your dreams are made of. If two people share the same dream, maybe that’s enough in life, and more than that can not be gathered in philosophy.