True Love…What’s That?

by S.A. Prince

True Love. Unconditional Love. These are ideas that society has created and given value to. There is no such thing as either of those, but nobody is going to tell you that. Too much money is made off the idea of “unconditional” and “finding your true” love.

Our holidays, pick one, any one, and you’ll see that that it’s propped up by consumerism, driven by the idea of love. Well, you’ll only see that if you take an objective look at them. And I’m not telling you stop celebrating them. If it feels good to you, do it. Indulge in the pomp and fanfare of American holidays. Although, do be cognizant of its intrepid manipulation adventuring you hastily down Oz’s yellow brick road.

From birth we are flooded with images that influence our notion of love. Whether it’s timeless classics like Beauty and the Beast, or more recent rom-coms like Silver Linings Playbook, “finding true love” is the go-to narrative that people never tire of, but are these happy-ending movies simply selling wolf tickets?

The answer to this lies in our understanding of love. Love is often misperceived. Like happiness, sadness, anger, and bewilderment, love is an emotion, nothing more, nothing less. It comes and goes, and at times we’ll feel love, and at other times, indifference.

The opposite of emotion is non-emotion. So, the opposite of love is indifference, not hate. The opposite of hate is indifference, not love.

Too often we attribute more to love than love is worthy of. What we are attributing to love is commitment. Commitment is love’s end result. Commitment is forged over time, giving it much more legitimacy than its fleeting beginning of love.

There will be many days that you don’t “feel” love (or want to give love). That’s okay. Your concern shouldn’t be love; it should be commitment. Find who and what you deem worthy of committing yourself to, and commit. Looking for true or unconditional love puts an emphasis on “feeling.” When you do that, you subject yourself to a roller coaster that you often don’t control. Stay away from love. Focus on commitment.

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