There is nothing more satisfying than the warm and weightless sensation of falling in love and we are equally aware of the crushing descent that far too often follows. So what is love? Is it a feeling? An emotion? A state of mind? A chemical? We wonder too...
The Ancient Greeks called it the 'Madness of the God's' and by all account, they are just about right, it's madness. Let's be honest with ourselves, what have you done for love? Dropped everything at a moments notice? Moved country to live with someone you love? Two week bender to mend a broken heart? The question stands...
In fact, there probably isn't anything in this world that hasn't been done in the name of love. And it's not all romance. The love to explore found lands that were considered myth, the love for space has seen us take galactic leaps through the stratosphere and the love to learn has given us knowledge beyond our wildest dreams.
Love has us all curious. It's compelling, confusing, painful, wonderful, desired by some and hated by others. Some love to hate and some hate to love. It could be argued that love and hate are one in the same and they need each other to survive.
Dr Martin Luther King Jnr says in A Testament of Hope that "Hatred Paralyses life, love releases it. Hatred confuses life, love harmonises it. Hatred darkens life, love illuminates it."
We can all probably agree that love is the water that extinguishes the fire that is hate, yet within that very sentiment lies an even bigger question. If there was no hate, would there still be love?
In Chinese philosophy, Yin and Yang notions that opposing forces compliment, interconnect and interdepend on each-other in the natural world and as the conflict heightens, so does their unity. Opposing forces that rely on each other can be witnessed all over the world from hot and cold to up and down etc, this is believed to be the physical manifestations of duality which is symbolised by Yin & Yang. Perhaps love and hate are another representation of Yin & Yang at work.
Love drives us and just like energy it provides us with the strength and vitality for sustained physical and mental activity. It is undeniably fair to suggest that love in it's entirety, is pure energy. An energy that you can feel, experience, use as fuel for the body and visibly see all around us everyday. It powers our dreams, our ideas, our romance, our passions and is perhaps the motivation we need to achieve our greatest ambitions.
Science likes to explain everything. Yet still, love is something scientists are still scratching our brains over. They theorise that love is a mixture of chemicals that creates the most exhilarating emotion and that's nature's way of keeping you within it's great plan of survival and reproduction.
According to science, there are three stages to love...
1) Lust - An powerful chemical releases sex hormones testosterone and oestrogen rushing through the body creating strong and instantaneous desire for your chosen match.
2) Attraction - A period in time which is mostly occupied by thoughts of whom you've been 'love stricken' by. Scientists believe the culprits responsible are the neurotransmitters Adrenaline, Dopamine and Serotonin. During this period, they are on your mind most of the time.
3) Attachment - This is the stage which really defines the bonding of a couple. The two chemicals released during this period act as a bond to help couples stay together at least until they have children. (Sounds kind of bleak, right?!) but actually here's the cool part. The chemical called Oxitocin is released during orgasm in women and men and the more you get f it, the stronger the bond becomes. If that's the key to a deepened attachment, we're in! And the other chemical is called Vassopresin, this seems to play a major role in the key to long tern relationships as lack of it may result in loss of desire for sex and an unsatisfied partner. Also released after sex.
But even with all the theories, studies and findings, we are still yet to discover loves true identity.
With so many variables to be taken into consideration as to why we love something, we'd require an exceptionally in depth evaluation into each individual. Every aspect of one's life including and not limited to mentality, likes, dislikes, fitness levels, habits, emotional capacity etc etc need to be measured to the very thing they love before even beginning to comprehend it's reason for compatibility.
So whilst science wants to explain something, it fails to assess the immense magnetism which compels us to love. It's funny, if you ever feel like science has all the answers, remember this...
"When scientists are studying atoms, they are in fact atoms, trying to understand themselves." Perhaps this is their love for seeking answers?
Science may question the realm of spiritual entities because it can't be explained by science but here at Zen we believe there are far more forces at play than what science can fathom. To imagine the infinite possibilities and sequences of events that need to take place to fall in love with someone or something, it is truly magical.
Have you ever been in the most random of places or situations and made one or two last minute decisions which set you on the path to love? Think about it, maybe you left your keys in the house and had you not of left them you'd of the never bumped into, the one. Or perhaps you thought about someone from the past and zap, just like that they virtually appear before your eyes.
We've shared the same dreams, beat the same heartbeat and even experienced true telepathy using the energy that is love. There are so many wonderful things that love provides and to be perfectly honest.. Who doesn't love that?