Goofs and Gadflies

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

There Is No Such Thing As Love

"Let me give it to you straight." - The Dears

Since I have already covered life, death, and the indeterminable amount of time in between which I call waiting. I would like to direct the reader's attention to that which we spend most of our lives as a product of or looking for, enmeshed in and falling out of, that crazy little thing called love. Far be it from me to suggest that love is a journey, a battlefield, or what happens to people when they least expect it. I am going to go with a macro definition of love and see it as a condition felt more often than it is realized. Love does not light up your life, it is not what keeps people together, and it certainly does not pay the bills. Love is not comfort, food for thought or grist for the rumor mill. Love does not make you cry at sad movies or when the hero saves the day. To thy own self be true. It is so cliche yet oddly important at this point to state, you can't love another until you can first love yourself. But if indeed there is no such thing as love, why bother?

It's when I look at the way others have struggled with love I see how the thorns of that rose do indeed prick. Hate is such a clear emotion. A strong feeling that endures like a painful reminder of loss, shame, or embarrassment. Hate rarely permeates within a person for an extended period of time. Because of its corrosive nature, hate must spill out to the surface regularly. If hate lingers in the heart too long it is transmuted to sorrow. From sorrow we lean towards regret. I think the same is true about hate. We cannot hate others unless we first truly hate ourselves.

"What is Love anyway, does anybody love anybody anyway" - Howard Jones

Love is within you. Love is something that spreads from you and can be spread upon you. You can be awash with love, drenched in the bliss of as my friend the Comrade would say: "Being in the only place I would want to be at that very moment." There are lessons in love I believe that teach us about our capacity for that emotion.

I have a good friend who yearns for her perfect love. I admire her ability to fight her way up the stream to spawn this true love. I have never seen someone so confident that there was a great guy out there for her as she truly does think her knight is around the corner. It's not like she is looking for a Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise looker with the intellect of Keats or Thoreau. She's searching for the ineffable quality we call chemistry. The ability to be an unreserved buffoon infront of your lover without fear of judgment. The partner for a lifetime of adventure and entertainment. The one who at the end of the day can turn out the lights and kiss you gently on the forehead. The way you have always wanted to be kissed since the days when you dreamed of Prince Charming or Mike Seaver from Growing Pains.

I want to be that guy. I want to be Lloyd Dobler. Even though I know its impossible to be movie star perfect; I think I am particularly superficial enough to try.

Lately I have endured the emptying of my heart and mind as I performed a gut check. I looked into my life and I asked myself if I liked what I saw. For the first time in my life I held myself accountable for my actions. I took stock of where I was and where I wanted to be. I set some goals and created the context in which success in one form or another was possible. I'm not about to start to sell you Amway or Real Estate, but I will say personal success is the easiest to achieve. I'm not saying my soul was saved or that I was a real mess to begin with, just that a little self analysis helped me identify some areas where bad habits were starting to hurt my personal development

Chief among the areas that were starting to hurt was the ability to love. I have loved before. I have endured love. Love can test the measure of a person in many ways. What would you do for love? At this point the author realizes he could write a million lines on the subject of love and not scratch the surface of what it means to love so he wonders why he took up the task in the first place. Love makes us crazy and it makes us blind to ourselves. It is maddening because of the heat which it creates. Love is a fever gripping the heart. The fires of love take the clay of our content and kiln it to an unbreakable bond.

"Can anybody love anyone so much that they will never fear? Never worry never be sad? The answer is they cannot love this much nobody can..."- Howard Jones

Because it is so ubiquitous and salient, so formative and abundant, I can safely conclude that there is no such thing as love. Love is life. To love is to live. We breathe love and it surrounds us like the air and the sea. We cannot deny it, or separate ourselves from it, and as such we cannot define it.

Phew. Now I can breathe a little easier. I've conquered love.


  • Hm. Confused. If it's everywhere how can there be no such thing as it? And the Conquerer, I suspect, conquers none as it can't be beat; it can only be joined.

    By Blogger Comrade Chicken, At 7:10 AM  

  • For me, to conquer something is to understand it. As a harbinger of personal responsibility, the concept of conquering that implies overlordship is repugnant.

    I'm feeling love in my heart these days. I suppose I never stopped loving at all. It just felt hard to open up. Like I was in a car doing 160 on the highway looking for a destination. Every time love approached it was past before I could get a bead on it. Maybe since I've cleared my plate I can look at the reflection glaring back at me.

    By Blogger Rye, At 7:41 PM  

  • hmmm...I see love as an energy, something that cannot be, well, had. Possessed. More something that arrives, and you can either make room in your heart and let it in, or run from it.
    But I agree, it's always there.
    Water, water, everywhere...

    By Blogger Zenchick, At 4:40 PM  

  • "Water, water, everywhere"

    It's like Jitterbug Perfume. We believe that love is found only in performing acts of love. That's why people are searching for love. The reality is that we can store love within ourselves and learn to grow love from what we already have.

    Thanks for stopping by, Zenchick.

    By Blogger Rye, At 10:38 AM  

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