Love

love-pinkLove is a complex set of emotions, behaviors, and beliefs associated with strong feelings of affection, protectiveness, warmth, and respect for another person. Love can also be used to apply to non-human animals, to principles, and to religious beliefs. For example, a person might say he or she loves his or her dog, loves freedom, or loves God.

What Is Love?

Love has been a favored topic of philosophers, poets, writers, and scientists for generations, and different people and groups have often fought about its definition. While most people agree that love implies strong feelings of affection, there are many disagreements about its precise meaning, and one person’s “I love you” might mean something quite different than another’s. Some possible definitions of love include:

  • A willingness to prioritize another’s well-being or happiness above your own.
  • Extreme feelings of attachment, affection, and need.
  • Dramatic, sudden feelings of attraction and respect.
  • A fleeting emotion of care, affection, and like.
  • A choice to commit to helping, respecting, and caring for another, such as in marriage or when having a child.
  • Some combination of the above emotions.

There has been much debate about whether love is a choice, is something that is permanent or fleeting, and whether the love between family members and spouses is biologically programmed or culturally indoctrinated. Love may vary from person to person and culture to culture. Each of the debates about love may be accurate in some time and some place. For example, in some instances, love may be a choice while in others it may feel uncontrollable.

Love versus Lust

Especially in the early stages of a relationship, it can be difficult to tell the difference between love and lust. Both are associated with physical attraction and an intoxicating rush of feel-good chemicals, coupled with an often overwhelming desire to be closer to another person, but only one is long-lasting: love.

Love is something that is cultivated between two people and grows over time, through getting to know him or her and experiencing life’s many ups and downs together. It involves commitment, time, mutual trust, and acceptance.
Lust, on the other hand, has to do with the sex-driven sensations that draw people toward one another initially and is fueled primarily by the urge to procreate. Characterized by sex hormones and idealistic infatuation, lust blurs our ability to see a person for who he or she truly is and consequently, it may or may not lead to a long-term relationship.

For instance, Lana is in a committed relationship with Steve and her sexual desire for him is waning. She loves and cares for him, but she finds herself feeling restless and dissatisfied with their physical relationship. When she meets Brendan, she experiences instant feelings of attraction and longing. The chemical messengers in her brain start sending signals to pursue this new man, even though she does not know anything about him other than how his presence makes her feel physically. Instead of working to improve intimacy with her current partner, she is overcome by lust for someone new.

The ideal intimate relationship scenario, some might say, involves a balanced combination of love and lust. After all, lusting after someone is typically an important early phase of a long-term partnership, and reigniting that initial spark is a practice worth cultivating for committed couples.

Love and Mental Health

Although almost no one can agree on a single definition of love, most people do agree that love plays a significant role in both physical and psychological well-being. Numerous studies have demonstrated the benefits of love. Love’s role in mental health is far-reaching, but some examples include:

  • The fact that babies who are not shown love and affection in the form of frequent holding and cuddling may be developmentally delayed or ill.
  • Feeling unloved is strongly correlated with feelings of low self-esteem and depression.
  • People who both feel loved by others and who report loving other people tend to be happier.
  • Love can play a role in long-term health, and feeling emotionally connected may help increase immunity.

References:

  1. Anonymous. (September 2, 2002). How to tell whether it’s love, like or lust. Jet 102.11, 12-14. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ez.trlib.info/docview/199970680/1833AF113A8E4DCAPQ/3?accountid=1229
  2. Prinz, J. J. (2007). The emotional construction of morals. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  3. Wilson, G. D., & McLaughlin, C. (2001). The science of love. London: Fusion Press.

Last Updated: 03-6-2017

  • 48 comments
  • Leave a Comment
  • emmanuel q.

    emmanuel q.

    January 1st, 2017 at 11:50 AM

    i have now realize the difference between love and lust

  • چال روی گونه

    چال روی گونه

    March 7th, 2018 at 8:22 AM

    I love your believs

  • چال روی لپ

    چال روی لپ

    July 20th, 2018 at 11:46 AM

    i think you like to be loved

  • arwin c.

    arwin c.

    March 1st, 2019 at 6:55 AM

    Love also pay lust always receive

  • Theodore

    Theodore

    June 30th, 2019 at 8:24 PM

    Wow! I have really learnt from this

  • Brooke

    Brooke

    April 10th, 2017 at 11:50 AM

    What is love? That’s an age old question we may never find a simple answer to. However, the effort you made in this post is incredible. I love your writing style, and you really gave some meaningful insight.

  • Yogesh

    Yogesh

    April 30th, 2017 at 4:29 AM

    I agree with this post but i personally think that love is something that drives us and keep us on a the right path. If we are alone and have no love in our life we may not be as worried and thriving towards better life as we do when we are concerned about people we love and giving them a good and healthy life. Love is what comes from inside. Loved this post keep up good writing also if your are free i would like to see your review on my blog post on the same topic : dhananjayd-mysteryoflife.blogspot.in

  • markjhan

    markjhan

    March 21st, 2018 at 7:52 AM

    its better to be love than never

  • Eden

    Eden

    July 21st, 2017 at 5:53 AM

    Love is what u do not what u say .it is a mutual attraction that binds two or more people together

  • Bright

    Bright

    July 24th, 2019 at 10:57 PM

    Love is love, if you can love you`ll be loved.

  • jessica

    jessica

    August 14th, 2019 at 3:27 AM

    Me and my boyfriend

  • sbadreck

    sbadreck

    May 16th, 2017 at 11:01 AM

    wow I like this

  • Jo

    Jo

    May 27th, 2017 at 6:40 PM

    Can i get lana’s number

  • dunno

    dunno

    August 29th, 2018 at 3:57 AM

    did u get it ? askin fora friend

  • Judy

    Judy

    June 4th, 2017 at 11:39 AM

    Wow i really love this post

  • Kailash

    Kailash

    June 7th, 2017 at 4:57 AM

    it is good post.

  • Nicetracy

    Nicetracy

    June 16th, 2017 at 6:58 AM

    I Love All U Guys Post.,so Let Lov Lead Since We Knw D Meaning Nw..

  • Anne

    Anne

    November 1st, 2019 at 10:56 PM

    I have a dilemma for you, this is a hypothetical story, OK.
    I know someone who is caring, loving, honest, reliable and committed to whatever she does, more than anything she is likeable and staunchly protective of those close to her. She volunteers in her community and people like and respect her, OK so far, yes, good.
    Now one day she gets a request for friendship of social media, who is a male just a little younger than her, normally she would dismiss this straight to the bin, but this time something makes her respond to this mystery male. Now this is completely out of character for her to do this, she is a woman that has been happily married for over 40years, why suddenly be tempted to stray from that. But she tells me as soon as he replied to her, she knew, knew what? I asked.
    She said it was weird, she just felt an unusual rush of such intense emotions and the sense of familiarity, that she felt overwhelmed and shocked by her reaction. She had at this point not seen what he looked like, so she felt even more confused that these feelings were for some one sight unseen. She told me she knew it was destiny, and she felt she knew him before, and she said when they continued talking she felt she’d come home. What I find strange is the male concerned, felt the same about her. So tell me is it love or is it lust?

  • OkoAustin

    OkoAustin

    June 24th, 2017 at 10:45 PM

    do love still exist? because I been trying to love but it seems that material things have taking love away from this new generation rather what we experience now is lust amoung our self. inshot I so much like this page thank you so much.

  • Violet

    Violet

    June 26th, 2017 at 8:31 AM

    LOVE is impossible to define and different for everyone. That sits very well within me.

  • Rahninho

    Rahninho

    July 4th, 2017 at 8:58 PM

    Well explained & now gat a primarily know of love is

  • Jennifer

    Jennifer

    July 15th, 2017 at 7:28 AM

    love is something u can never express,so strong nd emotional

  • isaac

    isaac

    August 17th, 2017 at 12:12 PM

    I have learnt a new aspect of love.

  • Sahar

    Sahar

    November 29th, 2017 at 7:44 AM

    Im sahar and Im from Iran
    This post its very intresting and I agree with this post

  • saeid

    saeid

    March 31st, 2019 at 4:40 PM

    SAHAR!!! which city from IRAN?

  • Ahmed T

    Ahmed T

    December 25th, 2017 at 2:44 PM

    Love’s simply an excuse to get hurt.. By it’s sweetness. I love You all_

  • biira

    biira

    June 6th, 2018 at 8:39 AM

    love is understandable

  • vaibhav k.

    vaibhav k.

    January 31st, 2019 at 6:48 AM

    i love your way of explaining true love..

  • rasheed

    rasheed

    February 9th, 2019 at 1:42 AM

    love is life

  • nomfundo

    nomfundo

    April 3rd, 2019 at 9:23 PM

    To me only blibical and love from homes makes sense because from then you’ll be able to pass it on

  • Laura

    Laura

    May 2nd, 2019 at 9:45 AM

    I agree to me love is family, people I know, people I trust, people who look after me and just the people around me that care for me!

  • Prince

    Prince

    May 15th, 2019 at 12:44 AM

    I agree with this post but i personally think that love is something that drives us and keep us on a the right path. If we are alone and have no love in our life we may not be as worried and thriving towards better life as we do when we are concerned about people we love and giving them a good and healthy life. Love is what comes from inside. Loved this post keep up good writing.

  • Brix

    Brix

    June 16th, 2019 at 3:27 PM

    The true meaning of love is when God gave his only son for the forgives of all our sin. He is a God that dresses himself to become a human so that He will feel what we have have felt from this earthly thing. Now he sit at the right of His father all He ask is to forgive all those people who had sin with us. Forgive so that we can meet the true love. Forgive your self before you gave forgiveness to others.

  • sophist

    sophist

    June 25th, 2019 at 12:17 AM

    Love is what u do not what u say. It is a mutual attraction that unites two people together. There is a major difference between love and lust. Nowadays people are considering love on the basis of attractive looks, money, bank balance. If Love marriages are based on these criteria than people bind themselves officially for lust and when it’s over they separate.

  • Winter

    Winter

    July 2nd, 2019 at 11:07 AM

    Love is the deepest part of life, no one can reach its end. It’s the subject of the life we live.
    Love is like light formed out of darkness brighten everything in every little opportunity.

  • Rahul

    Rahul

    July 5th, 2019 at 4:15 AM

    love is …………

  • Pronamika

    Pronamika

    July 5th, 2019 at 6:36 AM

    I am interested in your topics

  • Wil

    Wil

    August 5th, 2019 at 1:36 AM

    That’s a slight bit confusing.

  • Wil

    Wil

    August 5th, 2019 at 1:43 AM

    Life is a game and love is the prize

  • angel

    angel

    August 7th, 2019 at 4:22 AM

    this is one of the best definition about love

  • VARUN

    VARUN

    September 2nd, 2019 at 12:30 PM

    Awesome Article.

  • muhammad u.

    muhammad u.

    September 8th, 2019 at 11:13 AM

    It is true but love have a large pain for follower. and i am in thin pain.

  • mule

    mule

    September 8th, 2019 at 12:03 PM

    Love is to adjust your principles and become vulnerable.
    Love is to love no matter whether the idiot loves you back
    Love is a process of losing ur brians to emotions.

  • Krishnendu D

    Krishnendu D

    September 15th, 2019 at 11:51 AM

    This article is very nice… good explain what is love? Good website

  • Geaniece M

    Geaniece M

    September 23rd, 2019 at 1:27 AM

    Now I know what love really is.

  • Jarvis

    Jarvis

    October 13th, 2019 at 2:15 PM

    The difference between love and lust.. hmmm wow interesting I just hope I get help cause I really need to stop lusting over people

  • Kf

    Kf

    November 14th, 2019 at 1:16 AM

    Love is about how much you can sacrifice for others. Can you sacrifice your favourite tv show to accompany your partner to go shopping etc? If someone can sacrifice their life for their loved ones, that is ultimate true love.

  • Soubhagya Behera

    Soubhagya Behera

    December 12th, 2019 at 2:39 AM

    It is helpful.

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