Valentine’s day is an excuse to ask someone out on a date, show your affection towards someone or spend copious amounts of money to represent the value you can give to someone, by aiming to change their mood positively with ‘things’. There are some people out there who ignore this cherished day and others that cannot ignore it. The markets wait for this day patiently every year on the same day to receive the blessings from those in “love”. Even though life’s camera focuses on couples holding hands, cuddling each other, and performing PDA, all the attention seems to be on singletons. There are many people out there who wished they had a valentine, or more accurately wished they had the perfect companion that they can spend the rest of their days with. Do they really want his though or is this societal conditioning? Maybe they want moments of happiness with someone that seems to miraculously appear at the most convenient times. How can they be so sure that this perfect person exists? What is defined as perfection anyway? It is definitely subjective, however, it would probably involve someone who:
- Understands their needs
- Supports them unconditionally
- Is Ambitious and determined
- Great Listener
- They are physically attracted to
These are to name a few and to illustrate the point, but the list goes on… However, you cannot guarantee anyone will be like that. Even if all your friends were to say that a particular person of interest was inclined that way, it does not mean they will be like that for you. How can this be so? Because your understanding of what love is i.e. between one person and another from a romantic point of view, is flawed. Below is an attempt to define love in a way you can understand, and has already been attempted by the ancient Greeks.
Physical Attraction – If you do not want to bind yourself physically to this person (your partner or partner to be) with deep passion and expression then I question how long it will last, regardless of whom they are. It is not the sole reason for a successful relationship but it adds to propagation of the journey of love and creates juice to make a person passionate about the other, especially in intense moments of time. The Greeks labelled this Eros
Playful Child’s Play – These activities relate to the ‘tongue-and-cheek’ sort of interactions that you have with someone. It is having the ability to tease, tag along, and make someone cheekily smile with ongoing banter, whimsical responses, and making them feel like a kid in love. The Greeks called this Ludus
Loving thyself – When you are able to personally develop and mature, and acknowledge the person you are based on your experiences, potential and ambitions, you open up an opportunity to accept your flaws and own your strengths. If you can do that for yourself, you can do that to anyone else. Love is a mirror, what you give to yourself is what you get from others. That is the golden rule. There’s always someone wandering in life not looking for love, focusing on themselves and their own pursuits, and lo and behold they find an amazing person. Why does this happen? Well, part of the reason is because they were learning to discover themselves which is influences the journey of self-loving. The Greeks named this Philautia
Friendship and comrades – The person who can be trusted, who is loyal, and has the utmost integrity for another person is a true friend. Friends just like their friends because they feel like there is something genuine about them that attracts them to that relationship. It is usually a number of qualities, values and principles that they can identify with them making them “like” them and want to commit to making the genuine relationship work, as there is not much commitment to it as it comes naturally; if anything it is a social benefit at a minimum. This was known as Philia by the Greeks
Commitment and Longevity – They say that Longevity equals your credibility, and usually that statement is bold and true. The commitment you show towards anything shows the level of trust, love, passion, vision, energy, and effort you put into something, and that goes the same for someone you love. When we mention love in this century, we focus on eros, and other factors because we live in an instant gratification society that is fuelled by fairy tales, the media, and false representations of love. Love is an experience to be experienced not to be watched, talked about or read about. Being with someone is a decision and an eventual commitment you make; a social contract by nature. It is a decision even if you had a huge surge of deep passion for someone, your feelings overpowered you and directed you to facilitate a decision towards choosing to be with that person in that moment of time. Success is doing something long after the feeling is gone – and that involves commitment!
In the meantime for those of you without love focus on Philautia and agape a universal chairty and love for everyone, showing deep respect, gratitude and kindness to your fellow human being… That is the least you can do. So on this valentine’s day I hope you can understand what love is, rather than pulling all your might just into this one day, think about how much love you can give in relation to these six forms of love.
And on that note I say to you all Happy Valentine’s Day, and I love you very much!
The Sweet Love Message x