Love does not know any limit. It travels far and wide, molding into any shapes. Love is something that can not be defined as definition entails limitations. In this maddening world, Love keeps us sane and provides us hope for a better and beautiful world – for us and others.
“This is love: to fly toward a secret sky, to cause a hundred veils to fall each moment. First to let go of life. Finally, to take a step without feet.” – RUMI
Some people believe that love is unconditional whereas others equate love with war. Roland Barthes says in A Lover’s Discourse: Fragments:
“Am I in love? — Yes, since I am waiting. The other one never waits. Sometimes I want to play the part of the one who doesn’t wait; I try to busy myself elsewhere, to arrive late; but I always lose at this game. Whatever I do, I find myself there, with nothing to do, punctual, even ahead of time. The lover’s fatal identity is precisely this: I am the one who waits.”
Greeks are well-known for their ancient philosophies which are celebrated till date. Plato, Aristotle and Homer, they all gave their ideas about love. Many writers from different eras have discussed love and taken it as a subject for their writings. By summing those thoughts, there we find different kinds of love which are beautiful in their own ways. For there is nothing more beautiful than experiencing love.
1. Agape: Love that is Universal, Unconditional and Selfless
It is free from any carnal desire, loss or gain and expectations. This kind of love is considered ideal and highest in order. It is a love where the “self” diminishes and the soul soars beyond the material world. You love someone regardless anything and without any expectations, inevitably and unconditionally. It does not about restrictions, but setting it free. It’s an altruistic way of thinking, caring and loving others without being selfish. As Rumi says, “Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation.”
2. Eros: The Passionate Love
This kind of love is compared with the storm. It is filled with intensity and passion. It is marked by high physical desire. The lovers are losing their control and surrender themselves to the passion that they feel for it other. It’s fiery and engaging with a sense of possession. The body plays an important part here.
3. Philia: Love that is rooted in Friendship
A few things are as strong as the bond of friendship. This kind of love embraces and celebrates friendship. It is free from any physical attraction and explores the depth of emotion. Plato says that when lovers turn into friends, then the best relationship takes birth. Here Philia comes after Eros, making it strong and turning it into much more than a carnal desire.
4. Storge: The Familial Love
This love is rooted in kinship. It is the love between parents and children or of other kinships. It is a very powerful form of love. It provides motivation, care and a sense of togetherness that you are not alone in this big world. It takes birth out of familiarity.
5. Ludus: A love that is Playful
It is a love that can be found between young lovers. It is full of brightness and energy. Ludus considered as the initial stages toward a deep relationship. It consists the fluttering heart, flirting and teasing. This kind of love begins with an extreme excitement which eventually burns out with time and then develops a stable and mature relationship. Anyone can relate Ludus with initial days of love.
6. Pragma: Love that matures with Time
Pragma is known as the enduring love. It develops with time and becomes more mature. Pragma has a sense of stability and harmony within it. It abides by the vows that one takes on their marriage day. Lovers care for each other and stay by each other’s side against all the odds. They know that it’s a lifetime of togetherness and work delicately and patiently for their relationship.
7. Mania: A love that is obsessive in Nature
Mania leads a lover into an insane and obsessiveness. It happens when there comes an inequality between eros and ludus. It is a one-sided, unrequited love. For those who undergo mania, love means of protecting themselves, and they look for reciprocation by any means. They are deprived of peace and obsession eats their souls. They become possessive and often turns into destructive. If the other partner declines reciprocate, the chaos comes.
8. Philautia: The Self-Love
Philautia has its origin in the Narcissus myth. Narcissus was a very attractive man. Aminias fell in love with him, but Narcissus rejected him. Armenians committed suicide at Narcissus’ door, cursing him.
One day Narcissus was strolling by the lake where he saw his reflection in the water, He fell in love with his own reflection. While trying to attain his own reflection, he fell into the lake and died. This myth unfolds the self-love which can be both productive or destructive. If you cannot love yourself then how can you love others? And similarly, if you love yourself too much then how can you give enough love to others looking beyond yourself? The great Greek philosopher Aristotle opines, “All friendly feelings for others are an extension of a man’s feelings for himself.”
Love has different shades and an immense depth. The world is truly an empty and barren place without love. You only live once so it is your time to experience love in all shades and forms. Love is the bridge between you and everything. “Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray.”
“Stories End; But Not Love”
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