The Many Faces of Love

“The Many Faces of Love”A candyman who has been toiling for ten years for his younger brother’s education approached a park where kids and couples are gathered.

  A little boy saw that man’s rolling stall of candy puffs for the first time in his life and felt delighted to taste it like the way some couples played it into each others’ mouths.  The little boy’s mother noticed his son’s desire to have one.  It was her greatest pleasure to see his son get glittery-eyed with glee.  Succumbing for his son’s shallow happiness, the mother bought his son one and allowed him to play with it.

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  The mother felt so pleased seeing his son beat the sun with his smile upon tasting the velvety sweetness of that magical cloud.  Suddenly, a blonde little girl dressed in pink approached the little boy to take a look on his candypuffs.  The little girl smiled at the boy and the boy felt so shy.  Upon seeing the girl’s animation over him and his candypuff, the boy decided to give his candypuff to the little girl.

  The boy never felt so happy in his life after feeling that little girl’s soft and tender lips touch his cheek.  They became constant playmates from then on.  Years after, the two became the most popular couple in college.   In divine consonance with God, they asked a priest to help them knot their bonds.

  Their wedding is set soon.What does the candyman, the mother, the couples, the priest, God, the little boy and the little girl have in common?  All of them have affection or love for something or someone.  In the aforementioned scene, one can slice out the different realities of love. Its permutation and combinations range from God’s unconditional love to everyone, to mother’s love of her child, to a brother’s love for his younger sibling, to a boy’s affection to the girl, to a priest’s passion for his vocation up to the sexual partnership of couples.

  But as Pope Benedict would say, “are all the forms of love basically one, so that love, in its many and varied manifestations, is ultimately a single reality?” (Anderson ; Middleton, 2006).For so many ages and centuries, many psychologists and scientists even astrologers, poets, mathematicians and desperate lovers have tried to reason out everything about love – that it is science, an electrochemical neurotic reaction brought about by oversupply of serotonin (Newscientist.com, 2007), or that it is just a product of a strong mutual relationship between persons who have found a valid reason to die for the sake of the other, or that it is a profound gift from God, and so many whatsoevers that love has just become a hodge-podge collage of theories and reasoning.Love is such a broad aspect of life that everything we see is brought about by it.

  The animals in the zoo were brought about by procreation.  Einstein’s brilliant theories were brought about by his passion for knowledge.  The person next door would not have been born without the intimate acts of his parents.  And so on.

In short, love manifests in many forms.  According to Robert Sternberg (1986 in Wikipedia.com, 2007), love surfaces out of the different combinations of passion, trust and commitment (see Appendix A).  It is an act directed towards another person wherein one or all factors may be present.

  He further identified love as any of the following forms: (a)liking or friendship which is based only on intimacy (i.e. long term friendships); (b) infatuation or limerence which is based on passion (i.e.

love at first sight), (c) empty love which is only based on commitment (i.e. arranged marriages); (d) romantic love which is a combination of intimacy and passion (i.e.

lovers bound by liking and arousal); (e) companionate love which is a combination of intimacy and commitment (i.e. marriages found by friendship and not prompted by sexual desire); (f) fatuous love which is based on passion and commitment (i.e.

whirlwind courtship); (g) consummate love where all elements are present; and (h) nonlove which is the absence of all three elements (see Appendix B).Love can also be directed towards a thing (such as your job and career). To put it generally, love is that feeling which gives a little pleasure or an intense emotional state of affection toward another.  In contemporary times, it is misconceived as an objectiphilic action or relationship in which the sole purpose is to obtain sexual satisfaction through intercourse or anything which can provide the same pleasure.

Love has indeed multi-dimensional aspects.  The case aforementioned, for one, exemplifies love’s nature as multi-dimensional.  However, it could not have surfaced out had it not been for a person’s recognition of his social status or his relationship with the other person.  For example, the candyman’s passion for his work is brought about by his psychological assessment that his job is important in fulfilling his social responsibility as a guardian to his brother.

  Compared to the priest’s love for his vocation, though both love was brought about by realization of social responsibility, the latter’s affection is directed towards God and to everyone who needs him.  The mother’s unconditional love (maternal love) is also different because it is not only due to her recognition of social responsibility but because it is a mother’s naturale to be concerned about her child’s welfare and happiness.  As regards the romantic affection of the boy to the girl, it can be said that it was either brought about by their long-companionship or by his simple sexual attraction to the girl, one which may be factored out by what the society dictates as pleasing and beautiful.In all aspects, one can deduce that love has many faces.

It is both simple and profound.  It is many and it is one.  If we try to answer why people act differently when they are in love, Blaise Pascal’s “the heart has its own reasons that reason does not know” would be the general answer. But in relation to this paper, the answer is because people have different personalities and responsibilities and that there love is congruent to their social status in the family and community.

  The level of affection to every person is due to the presence or absence of any or all of the tripartite personalities of love: trust, passion and commitment.  It manifests in many forms, but like the holy trinity, it is but one.REFERENCESAnderson, A. and Middleton L.

(2006). Love special: what is the thing called love? Newscientist.com. Retrieved __________ from http://www.

newscientist.com/channel/sex/love/mg19025491.200-love-special-what-is-this-thing-called-love.htmlDataguru.

com. Types of love. Retrieved ______ from http://dataguru.org/love/fehrtyp.

asp.Newscientist.com. (2007).

Instant expert: love. Retrieved June 17, 2007 from http://www.newscientist.com/channel/sex/loveSage, N.

A. (2001). Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love: Illustrated (On-Line).  Retrieved ___ from http://www.

psy.pdx.edu/PsiCafe/Overheads/TriangularLove..

htmSchillinger, L. (2000). In the heart or in the head? Three psychiatrists explore the neurobiology of love. The New York Times on Net.

Retrieved __________ from http://www.nytimes.com/books/00/02/27/reviews/000227.27schillt.

htmlSternberg, R. J. (1986) A triangular theory of love. Psychological Review, 93, 119-135.

Wikipedia.com. (2007). The triangular theory of love.

  Retrieved ___ from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triangular_theory_of_loveAppendix A Appendix BSource: http://dataguru.org/love/fehrtyp.asp

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