Friday, September 15, 2006

Soulmate

Soulmate (or soul mate) is a term sometimes used to designate someone with whom one has a feeling of deep and natural affinity, friendship, love, intimacy, sexuality, and/or compatibility.
A related concept is that of the twin flame or twin soul – thought to be the ultimate soulmate, the one and only other half of one's soul, for which all souls are driven to find and join.
However, not everyone who uses these terms intends them to carry such mystical connotations; they are sometimes used simply as an expression of strong emotional feeling for someone.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Romantic love

Romantic love can be returned or unrequited. In the former case, the mutual expressions of love can lead to marriage or to the establishment of a permanent relationship, which in most cases will include passionate sexual love. Where the love is one-sided (unrequited), the result can be damage to the esteem and/or the psychological welfare of the spurned lover.

One aspect of romantic love is the randomness of the encounters which lead to love. It may be for this reason that some in Western society have historically emphasized romantic love far more than other cultures in which arranged marriages are the tradition. However, the globalization of Western culture has spread Western ideas about love and romance.

Romantic love became a recognized passion in the Middle Ages, when in some cases insurmountable barriers of morality or convention separated the lovers. The effect of physical attraction and impossibility of intimacy resulted in an excessive regard of the beloved as extremely precious. Winning the love, or at least the attention, of the beloved, motivated great efforts of many kinds, such as poetry, song or feats of arms.

In more modern times romantic love has been the theme of art and entertainment in all its forms. Some of the greatest poetry (e.g. Shakespeare's sonnets), opera (e.g. La Boheme), and literature (e.g. Pride and Prejudice) have romantic love as the main theme. Similarly much of more popular culture from theatre to film to popular music has romantic love at its heart. However, it has not been without its critics. Virginia Woolf called Middlemarch one of the few English novels for "grown up people" given its pessimistic portrayal of marriage.

Monday, September 04, 2006

love

Love is a profound feeling of tender affection for or intense attraction to another. It is considered a deep, ineffable feeling shared in passionate or intimate interpersonal relationships. However, in different contexts, the word love has a variety of related but distinct meanings: in addition to romantic love, which is characterized by a mix of emotional and sexual desire, other forms include Platonic love, religious love, familial love, and the more casual application of the term to anyone or anything that one considers strongly pleasurable, enjoyable, or desirable, including activities and foods. This diverse range of meanings in a single word is commonly contrasted with the plurality of Greek words for love, reflecting the word's versatility and complexity.