The most important virtue of being human is capacity to love. The irony is that human heart (some say mind) has enormous capacity to generate feelings to another being but we all express in one word- LOVE. When you understand the different types of love out there, you can become conscious of how deep our connection is with ourselves and the other people in our lives.
Overall, the fairy tales, movies, novels, TV shows have emphasized love that is erupted by lust. The mankind has created many myths and made humans believe things that are not real. But the truth is that passion dwindles and quickly reality sinks in that a relationship is a transactional game in which one has to overcome frictions.
It is important to realize that there are many dimensions of love. Once you realize various dimensions of love, perhaps you may opt to choose the form you prefer the most.
Fondness: Admiration, really liking, adoring, and appreciating. This type of love is termed as storge as it is friendship-based love. A Storge lover wants a companion who shares her likes and dislikes and who can form a long relationship based on closeness, trust, security and affection.
Play: Creativity, pleasure, flirting, enjoying activities together, fun, and companionship. This is termed as ludus where love is a game. A Ludic lover wants to have fun, but doesn't necessarily want a serious relationship.
Romantic: Special connection, loving, passion, tenderness, and affection. It is also categorized as Eros (inception stage), the kind that gives you butterflies in your stomach and a tingling in certain other places.
Sexual: Passion, desire, physical intimacy, eroticism, and chemistry. It is also categorized as Eros (latter stage), the kind that has passed wanting and longing stages and has entered belonging state.
Soulful: Emotional intimacy, heart connection, sharing, spiritual connection, motivation, and inspiration. This is the highest type of love is termed as agape, or selfless unconditional love shortcomings of others. Agape is the love that is felt for that which we intuitively know as the divine truth: the love that accepts, forgives and believes for our greater good.
Trust: Reliance, support, belonging (family, friendship), unconditional regard, loyalty, patience and tolerance.
Togetherness: Working together, common goals, comradery, teamwork, partnership, and companionship. This one is termed as Pragma, a practical love. People who conceive of love this way are pragmatic when looking for a partner. They choose their mate based on rational decisions about whom they fit best with. In many societies this may be categorized as “arranged” system.
Altruistic: Selfless love, care and regard for your partner, wishing well, and benevolence. This type of love is termed banquet where love is expressed through making sacrifices for another person.
Self-love: Regard for one’s own well-being and happiness, not being self-absorbed, but true regards and cares for self. This is termed as philautia is self-love in its healthiest form. You cannot share what you do not have. If you do not love yourself, you cannot love anyone else either. The only way to truly be happy is to find that unconditional love for yourself. Only once you learn to love and understand yourself, will you be ready to search for the spiritual freedom of the Self.
Master: Obsessive love that, while intimate and intense, often includes jealousy, possessiveness and a lack of communication. This type of love is termed as maniacal love which often leads to domestic violence. This form of is sort of self-love but it is the unhealthy vanity and self-obsession that is focused on personal fame, gain and fortune as is the case with narcissism.
Amazingly, love is uniquely many splendor things as humans have enhanced through it multi-dimensions. But through the power of soulful love and self-love you can come to understand how amazing the human hearts really are. It is best to realize that your heart is the only things in the universe that grow larger the more it gives to others.
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