The Philosophy, Psychology and Reality of Love

Yesterday I was involved in an in-depth conversation about love: what it’s philosophy(ies) is (are), the perceived psychology behind it and what appears to be its reality.  While thoroughly engrossed in this conversation, I got the idea to write on some of what was discussed.

Although our conversation wasn’t broken into titled parts as it is here, I thought I’d do this so what is given here can be followed, not deemed as random thoughts.

Philosophy

In my own words, the philosophy of love is what the ancient Greeks broke into three parts:

  1. Agape (a ga pay) = love of (your) god(s) – a selfless, unconditional, non-sexual love of all beings, in the widest sense;
  2. Philos (fee los) = love, loving; also, brotherly love – love of family and friends;
  3. Eros (air os) = physical, erotic, sexual love.

I seldom if ever see anyone “living” agape love.  What I do see is people telling others what their god(s) qualities are, and their god(s) seem to be barbaric to me.  The unconditional love towards all beings is quite evident – wars in every country around the world.  I don’t mean foreign wars only; I’m including the local wars of property, perceived property, lack of respect and the false sense of respect, just to give examples.  However, if you consider eroticism to be love, there’s plenty of that going around!

Psychology

The psychology of love is rather simple, for me at least – to care for someone close to you, and have the utmost respect for everyone.  Recently, I’ve come to coin a phrase that I think captures the idea of love, the “Circle of Love.”

The circle of love is described (for example, a loving couple, but not limited to the love of two people) as;  one who loves another with all he/she is and has (from the heart), and the other person receives, acknowledges it, then returns that same love.  As long as love is given and returned, it will live on and enrich the lives within the circle.  However, like a loop or a rubber-band, when one person stops giving, the circle is broken – love stops.

Reality

The reality of love in general terms usually is far from either the philosophy or the psychology of love.

Years ago in Chicago, I worked with an older Italian man who I really liked and respected.  He was in his second marriage and evidently raising his step children that he was working to put through college.  One day he and I were in a conversation about his first marriage, which he didn’t have anything negative to say about it, but he did talk about his “mistress.”  I eventually asked him, if you have a wife that you love, why did you have a mistress?  Wasn’t the woman you married enough for all you wanted in a wife and relationship?  He looked at me very seriously, then with a very slight smile replied; “There are women you marry, and there are women that you have fun with.”

Another conversation I had just this past weekend was about how some women treat men.  During the conversation in a shopping district, the prime example walked by – an older man, probably in his late sixties was walking rapidly towards us on the same sidewalk with his grandchild in tow;  behind him was his wife, yelling at him in a very dominate tone in her voice.  I then stated, “See, this is what I mean!  Many men are treated as if only our obligations to provide money, a home, food and clothing, etc. is all we’re good for, and you wonder why so many men drink in excess, and/or have girlfriends?” Love isn’t about possessions, nor giving and receiving them; love isn’t about what you think someone should have done for you, or should be doing for you.  Love is about sharing who and what you are with those that can and do appreciate you.  If you feel great about being yourself while in the company of another, that is love, and now you know the circle.

I’m not trying to hold men higher than women here because I know of many women that have similar experiences.  The point is, whatever love brought these people, obviously their circle of love is broken – there isn’t any love or respect left in their relationship.

When we talk about unconditional love, I’d even venture to say that the circle for most has never been established.  People talk about love, but show hate, distrust, the desire to control, belittle, publicly shame and humiliate, physically and emotionally harm, not only other humans, but animals and our planet as well.  Think I’m exaggerating?  Have you seen the political races and problems that exist around the world?  Just using this as an example… if this is what love looks like, I’d prefer to be a hermit.

I am by no means suggesting that I’m perfect in this, but I do my best to love any and everyone – to give people the “benefit of the doubt”, but still give love and/or respect to someone who seeks to harm me, or others.  It’s not always easy, but somehow, someway, we have to detach our egos from the reality of, we’re products of our upbringing, mixed with whatever we have chosen to be as sentient beings.  Very few good things are won through violence, whether we call it a justifiable war, police action or what have you.

Love can change the world – this I do believe, but only love that’s within the circle of love.

Truth and Perception

Last week, I said that I was going to write about Mitt Romney and what I feel are definite reasons  not to vote for him.  I had documentation, videos, photos and I had the ability to tie them all together to make what I considered to be a great case against him.  Since then, I’ve thought, and re-thought about that and while I feel that I can make a very good stance on the subject, I’ve come to realize that…

Throughout my lifetime, I’ve noticed that people will make decisions for many various reasons, whether logical or emotional.  For many people, even when the facts have been provided and backed up with irrefutable documentation/evidence, people will still make decisions from an emotional stance, rather than from logic.  We can see this in our everyday lives.

Just last week, while talking with a very close friend, he stated that he is making his choice for president based on only one thing the candidate of his choice has stated.  For me and a few other of my friends, we consider this to be akin to accepting a choice built on a lie.  If you or anyone gives an answer that is only 80% correct, is it the truth, or a lie?  Let’s look at it from another perspective:  if you’re allergic to preservatives such as what you’ll find in a bottle of wine (I have a couple of friends that are allergic to various sulfites  and have almost died because of that additive), is it ok to drink that bottle of wine (or eat the food that has even trace levels of peanuts if you have a peanut allergy) because it’s over 95% pure?  Will that person be alright?

I know, you don’t have any of these problems, so this means it’s ok for you.  Your perspective is, it’s not my problem and the truth doesn’t matter.  So GMO foods are alright with you also.  Dropping bombs with depleted uranium is ok too, because it doesn’t affect you directly.  This list virtually has no end…

… but that’s my perspective.

Good luck with your future!

A Case of Responsibility, Credit and Blame

As most of you know, I consider myself to be apolitical:  I have a few friends that disagree with my view of myself, but as I argue this with them, the only thing I can say to defend myself is, if I hear it and/or see it, I’ll remember it.  So, whatever I hear or see in the news, or other sources, I’ll remember it and compare it to what is known, what I already know, and what I’ll eventually learn.

What I’d love to see in this election year are people who actually know why there is such heated debates, if not arguments over which candidate is the best and what the presidents actual duties and abilities are.  As I wrote about this before, contrary to seemingly popular belief, you don’t elect a president to be your dictator for four years!  As a matter of fact – if you know your constitution, you’ll know that congress and the senate run the country – and since the Republicans gained control half-way through President Obama’s term in office, this is when his real problems started… but not only his problems, our problems.  In short, the president is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, and the leader – or if you prefer – the representative of the U.S.  It’s easier to have one person representing a nation or even a business than taking the whole of congress and the senate (in business, the board of directors) to a meeting.

In politics as well as religion – the two subjects that can get most people in really hot water – there are discussions that people take credit for all the wonderful things they or their “side” does, but those same people are very reluctant to take responsibility for all the ill’s they, or their “side” have done; it’s akin to taking all the glory, but none of the responsibility for any failures.

No matter what country you live in, if your country is having elections of any kind, please take the time to know what your constitution allows, supports; what your candidate of choice actually stands for, know his or her moral character (without morals, everyone will suffer whatever ill’s that person brings to the office you elected them too), and know their short-comings.  To give a hint – by now most everyone world-wide knows how much Mitt Romney “flip-flops”, so I ask you, how do you think the leaders of other nations will take to Mr. Romney when he says one thing, but with his current record of changing his mind on a whim… are those national leaders going to feel secure that his word is his bond?  You decide.

Whomever you elect to your political offices, if they run their office well, by all means, take credit for their success:  if they drop the ball, and kick it instead of picking it up and correcting their mistake(s) – if they “line their pockets” the those of their friends, political or corporate while others suffer, take the blame and do something about it… besides complain and “pass the buck.”  You elected that person into office and most constitutions allow you to, in one form or another, to remedy the wrongs of that leader.  Just know who your enemy is before taking action.

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Just as a closing note:  it is my plan to write an open letter to Mr. Mitt Romney about things that we all see and know about him… I actually hope he does read it.  I’ll show much more respect to him as a person and as a candidate than he is showing to the incumbent president.  The views I present will be my own, but for those that know my style by now, I’ll do my best to provide facts, not just opinions.

Have a wonderful day!

 

Why Humanity Needs to Start Over

It’s gotten to a point that people I know, that don’t read my blog are talking with me about the worlds declining conditions.  I often say that we deserve what the future most likely will bring us and herein I’m going to give a few examples.

People I know, and have been discussing this with, on and off over the years all agree that mankind needs to start over.  Some of us have been using the expression, “I want to go home!”  We don’t feel that this is our home – and for many of us, we understand just what we’re saying and what it means, but we won’t get into that now.

Today, let’s look at some of the things we experience on a daily basis;  some of which we notice, and others we see, but pay little attention too:

Social (incl. beliefs, hatred and fascism/imperialism):  In a world that has gotten “smaller” per se, because of our increased communication capabilities, we still haven’t learned to unite as a people with the only differences that of skin color, religious and cultural differences.  We spend so much time addressing our differences than working on our similarities and what we have in common – mainly the planet we live on and depend upon for our lives.  Warring with one another is “so old-fashioned” in a world so adept in the “ability” for communication, why can’t we tell those that keep us divided to “bugger off”?  Honestly, have we become so mesmerized by our means of communication and how they work, and the media that is provided for us that we have lost the ability to talk with those that our media providers tell us are our enemies?  In communication, it only takes one person to talk to one other person and it continues from there… but we’ve gotten to the point of, “Let someone else talk to ‘those’ people.  I have my friends and my problems, that’s enough.”  IT’S NOT ENOUGH!!!  The problems persist if all of us don’t take part, and they won’t get any better unless we take part.

Years ago, an ordained pastor told me in a conversation that he, “can’t stand the French (people).”  When asked why, he only said that he never has.  I’m sorry, but I do not understand such prejudices.  Last week, a person I know insisted that all Muslims are terrible.  For the majority of my life, I’ve known and befriended many Muslims and find them to be just like everyone else.  There are far more “moderates” in Islam than the “fundamentalists” that exist in most all religions.  But of course, “because the media says they’re all bad, they must be.”  Right?  WRONG!  Just because there are neo-Nazi’s, Klu Klux Klan members and corporate business leaders out there that support separatism of one kind or another doesn’t mean that every person of European origin is bad, does it?

Environment (incl. economy)The way I see the general public talk about the environment, it’s as if it’s only a topic of discussion that – again – someone else has to repair.  If you keep buying and using the products that pollute the air our bodies need, the ground and water that gives us our food and drink (remember, you are around 80% water), you… all of us are the problem.  Let me give you some examples:

  • This year alone, many forests around the world have seen/experienced drought and fires.  Lest you forget, trees not only provide is with paper products, they are the source of our oxygen.  However, when I started researching this particular subject, I found many references that state that we have better forests now than we had 50 years ago – and that was from a report made only last month!  My immediate question was, how is that possible?  As I stated earlier, with the droughts, forest fires and landslides that were occurring around the world this summer alone, how could anyone make that statement?  Consider that the majority of the world uses toilet paper; books, newspapers, notebooks, post-it notes, magazines, instruction books and manuals, copy paper, billboard signs, cardboard boxes and so much more are still being produced everyday at a staggering rate – but trees grow overnight, right?  Consider this – in 2011, there were 7,012,000,000 people worldwide (that’s 7 billion).  Imagine how much toilet paper that amounts too!  It may seem funny to you, but if you’re accustomed to using it… not so funny now, is it?Let’s look at this with a different twist:  The world population is a bit higher than 7 billion and 5.6 billion people have cell phones; 1.1 billion computers(2012).  With each cell phone comes the individual box, the case it was shipped in; all the labels and the (instruction) manuals for operation.
    • While we’re on the subject of computers (desktop, laptop, or even hand-held… smartphones and even the basic ones), what makes up their main construction?  PlasticsHow is plastic made?  Here is an excerpt from the link provided:

    Petroleum to Plastics

    The technological road from oil field to finished plastic product has numerous fascinating side trips. Here’s the route taken in the petroleum-to-plastics process:

    1. Petroleum is drilled and transported to a refinery.

    2. Crude oil and natural gas are refined into ethane, propane, hundreds of other petrochemical products and, of course, fuel for your car.

    3. Ethane and propane are “cracked” into ethylene and propylene, using high-temperature furnaces.

    4. Catalyst is combined with ethylene or propylene in a reactor, resulting in “fluff,” a powdered material (polymer) resembling laundry detergent.

    5. Fluff is combined with additives in a continuous blender.

    6. Polymer is fed to an extruder where it is melted.

    7. Melted plastic is cooled then fed to a pelletizer that cuts the product into small pellets.

    8. Pellets are shipped to customers.

    9. Customers manufacture plastic products by using processes such as extrusion, injection molding, blow molding, etc.

Up to a few years ago, consumers had very little interest in ink other than to buy refills for their pens. Fountain pens became a novelty as the disposable ball point pen took over the market. The introduction of home computing led to home printing. Today it is rare to find a residence or business that does not have a printing capability. As a result, buying “ink” in the form of a cartridge or having that cartridge refilled at an inkjet island in a local mall has become a part of the day-to-day shopping experience, just as buying a bottle of ink was common 50 years ago.

Ink refilling services for printer cartridges are offered by large, official printing companies as well as smaller, “unofficial” refill companies. Customers can often cut printing costs by using refill services from a refill company.

High turnover of computers creates a steadily growing stream of computers to landfills. This e-waste is a source of toxic heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, arsenic and cadmium, which leach into the soil and underground water supplies from landfills.

It’s too late to change the road of physical destruction we’re on… well, that’s my opinion, but nevertheless, changing the physical can be seen from at least two angles:

  1. If we did change our physical world, how long would we have to deal with what we’ve already done to our physical source of life?  How long before it regenerates itself?
  2. Can we as humans really change the physical without changing how we think?  If it’s true that we do nothing without thinking about it first (thought becoming action), will the action come of its own without consciously being thought about?

When we no longer have our natural resources, will our products of convenience matter?  Many of us are having a fit over GMO’s, but don’t care about what’s happening to our environment that we can also stop.  When you have riches, but no sustainable food and water…

Sooner or later, you’ll have to decide which is more important.  Will it be too late when you do chose?

You tell me.