Retry at "Meaning of Love Thread" Please don't mess it up

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by Riomacleod, Sep 2, 2003.

  1. Riomacleod Registered Senior Member

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    301
    I don't understand what you mean here. Need is a choice? I guess I can see that need stems from a choice made once, but people don't choose to be addicted to heroin. They just are. People don't choose to become addicted to other people. They just do.

    Yes, I am. Personally, I think that there are several Romantics who would say that they don't believe in anything that isn't tangible itself. Romanticism was a pretty much complete denial of Dualism, Rationalism and Empiricism. I still think that the Romanticist philosophy is this: We can't know anything. We can guess, and we can feel, and we can suppose that things might stay the same. If I cut my arm one day, and it hurts, I can imagine that cutting my arm will always hurt, and thusly avoid it. If someone tells my cutting my arm will hurt, I have no reason to believe a word he says on the matter, because our worlds are not the same. As long as we're plummeting down the express elevator to hell, we might as well really enjoy the ride.

    I examine Intreview With the Vampire and Dracula. They're pretty iconic examples of vampirism. In the end, I also examine what the movie did to the book. (primarily because Interview didn't support my claim that we've gone from an agapic soceity to a passionate one and it was too late in the process to have to chew through another bad vampire book. The movie did support my claim thoroughly. If I were Anne Rice, I'd have sued over what they did to her book).

    Lestat may not be, though I think that deep down, he is the complete ass that Louis thinks he is, and you can't deny that Lestat does actually do the majority of the things that Louis says he does (I mean, as much as anything is "done" in a work of fiction.). Furthermore, Armande is exactly as Louis understands him, and I think Louis becomes pretty much self-transparent by the end. He understands what's happened to him over time. I wouldn't call them "over-passionate humans" and I don't ever remember using that phrase. Vampires are a warning to people though about what happens when you give up Love for love.

    Well, that's not really Love then, is it? I have to admit it sounds like a pretty crappy life, too, waiting every day for the other shoe to drop and for your Love to leave you. I'd even go as far as to say that that is probably a self-fulfilling prophecy.
     
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  3. Xev Registered Senior Member

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    Riomacloud:
    Danke. I was liking our conversation, sorry to have to close it.

    Just really quick before I go to work (I'll reply in detail later):

    I always wonder at people who capitalize "Love". Is this different from love?

    Different people have different ideas of love. Brunnhilde was willing to destroy Siegfried in order to avenge herself and to bring him back to her. Escamillo loves Carmen and is willing to accept the fact that she is never faithful to a man for more than a few weeks.

    How can you say who loved more or less?

    As for what is crappy and what is not, we all die someday. Is the sky less blue because I will no longer see it one day?
    Perhaps it's a matter of accepting impermanence.
     
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  5. Riomacleod Registered Senior Member

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    The capitalization of Love refers specifically to the Platonic Ideal. It's different than love in a certain way that Rabbit is different than a rabbit. Love is the essential being of love. Plato would say that every single love instance participates in some degree with Love itself.

    Mmm..better yet, Love is to love what the process of a pen is to the specific process that a particular pen goes through (if you're familiar with process metaphysics). Love is then more than the sums of all the love that is experienced in the world. It's all of that and it's own pure existance in the world.

    ****Relativism Alert****

    Just because people have different ideas of what love is doesn't mean that every opinion is equally valid. In fact one could say that certain people Know what love is and other people just Opine what it is.

    Maybe neither really knew what love really is? Brunnhilde sounds awful narsicissitic to me. I'll admit I'm not really up on my opera, though.

    I'm ashamed to admit I do know the plot to Phantom of the Opera though, and even though the Phantom uses the word love a good deal, I think people have a very difficult case to make if they honestly think that the Phantom loves Christine. Something like I think that you'd have a hard time making a case that Lucy loves any three of her suitors from Dracula. She just chooses the one who is willing to give her what she wants most at the time. It's pretty clear why she's such a good candidate for vampirism, and why Mina doesn't ever succumb to Dracula completely.
     
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  7. zagen Philophanian Registered Senior Member

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    Here is my definition of love.

    1. A deep, tender, ineffable feeling of affection and solicitude toward a person, such as that arising from kinship, recognition of attractive qualities, or a sense of underlying oneness.
    2. A feeling of intense desire and attraction toward a person with whom one is disposed to make a pair; the emotion of sex and romance.

    3. Sexual passion.
    Sexual intercourse.
    A love affair.
    4. An intense emotional attachment, as for a pet or treasured object.

    If we can't agree on a definition of love, we can't get very far in the philosophy of it. So i would rather just use this one from dictionary.com and be done with it.

    As for the meaning of love, whether it's a single emotion, or many together probably doesn't matter much. What does matter is why so many ppl want it.

    Apparently it makes you feel good, happy, sad, proud, or whatever else there is to it. People like it, and they're going to keep trying to find it for their own personal reasons.

    Whether it's genetic to feel this way or just another complex emotion made up from years of procreation and society's ideals, it works to procreate and produce young.

    Now for love in it's cosmic meaning, it makes you feel good, and is good for keeping our race going, sort of. So it might just turn into another type of orgasm that lasts longer.

    In my opinion it's another emotion, not the point of life, but a plus like happiness or contentment, only more complicated, and a little overrated.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2003
  8. ele Registered Senior Member

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    187
    definition of love in practical reality is as varied as the relationships of people who profess to love each other. Any discussion of love which two people are intimately involved in is i think a way of feeling out whther there is a basis for a relationship between them or not.

    I find nothing wrong with that at a highly intellectual level or otherwise. Of course people enjoy such discussions, it is only natural to find them enchanting and enticing and somehow somethingt o do with anticipation.
     
  9. Xev Registered Senior Member

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    10,943
    Riomacloud:
    I'm sorry, I can't stand Plato. He stinks of the Christian.

    "Essential being"? So what is this, a concept? Then say its a concept. Is it an actual thing? Then where is it? Am I going to wake up one morning and have to rescue "Love" from my cat?

    Love, as I mentioned before, is caused by a certain interaction of various neurotransmitters. Different brains will be subject to different interactions (yes, this is simplistic).

    Basically - it's a subjective emotion. How can you put an objective value on it?

    Now, to your origional:

    Every action in life is a choice. Of course Sartre oversimplified things when he claimed that a Roman slave was perfectly free, but the point remains.

    You choose to start using heroin. From that point on, you choose every single time whether you will continue to use it or not. Every time you pick up your needle and spoon, you choose to be addicted.

    Likewise with people, if being addicted to a person is possible.

    I'll sympathize, but who?

    Not so. Romanticism was a strong reaction against the excesses of an industrial age (which they identified with the worship of reason so prevalent during the Enlightenment). However, I don't think they wholly "despised reason, despised science" (with apologies to Mephistophiles)

    Rather interesting - who would you say claimed this?
     
  10. ele Registered Senior Member

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    187
    "Yes, I am. Personally, I think that there are several Romantics who would say that they don't believe in anything that isn't tangible itself. Romanticism was a pretty much complete denial of Dualism, Rationalism and Empiricism. I still think that the Romanticist philosophy is this: We can't know anything. We can guess, and we can feel, and we can suppose that things might stay the same. If I cut my arm one day, and it hurts, I can imagine that cutting my arm will always hurt, and thusly avoid it. If someone tells my cutting my arm will hurt, I have no reason to believe a word he says on the matter, because our worlds are not the same. As long as we're plummeting down the express elevator to hell, we might as well really enjoy the ride."

    I think that you are half right. It was about a reaction against pretension and about the valuing of the natural and this included the physical and instinctive. However it was also about the beauty in and the value of the beauty in nature and the world around us, and that was not just a physical beauty but a spiritual and aesthetic beauty for many of the Romantics. I think this can be seen in the work of the great romantic poets such as Byron, Keats and Wordsworth. The movement also emphasised heightened feelings and the experience of experience and individuality as opposed to conformity and thought and questioning and curiousity as opposed to dull and settled thought patterns. It championed the creative, the passionate, the interesting and the every day, but not he pretentious and conforming upperclasses.
     
  11. ele Registered Senior Member

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    187
    "As long as we're plummeting down the express elevator to hell, we might as well really enjoy the ride."

    I do not think romanticism was about rampant sexuality as suggested by this comment or ramoant sensualism. That is to decry and misunderstand its importance, and furthermore is much more like hedonism than romanticism.
     
  12. ele Registered Senior Member

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    187
    "Every action in life is a choice. Of course Sartre oversimplified things when he claimed that a Roman slave was perfectly free, but the point remains.

    You choose to start using heroin. From that point on, you choose every single time whether you will continue to use it or not. Every time you pick up your needle and spoon, you choose to be addicted.

    Likewise with people, if being addicted to a person is possible."

    I dont disagree that fundamentally things are structured this way. However, heroin addiction is a ohysical addiction. It has physical withdrawal pains. the physical chemicals and pains in your body control what you want to do when you suffer physical addiction- so yes, you still decide, but what kind of choice is it? The art is to choose not to get into situations which will leave you having very little ability to choose, such as these. Of course, addiction to a person can be a pleasant choice and this is generally known as falling in love. i guess this is where we get back on topic. Now as slim and I were saying, would it not be wonderful, to combine the faling in love state and the true, ,meaningful and quiet love state together in arelationship with one person who was lover and friend someone you were in love with and loved and had a passion for, and also a sexual passion for, and would this perhaps not be the ideal definition of a love people want to experience and is healthy for them?

    (Thanks for restarting this thrread xev, i too am finding it very interesting.)
     
  13. Riomacleod Registered Senior Member

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    301
    How is being a slave to the Romans any different than the psychological and physical addiction of heroin?

    I'd say that the purely "descriptive" music of the Romantic period makes a good case for it. By leaving behind the form and structure of the Classical period, they moved from a beautiful form of music for the sake of music to one that is simply descriptive. I would say that art and philosophy followed this trend into postmodernism-since Romanticism is the first step into Postmodernist thought. My example of art is that of impressionists and romanticists who were working now to simply produce visceral response instead of higher thought. The phrase "What does this piece mean to you?" came into existance at the begining of the romantic period. During the classical/modern period, art had a very clear interpretation that was available to pretty much every person.

    If you're going to make fun, I do have one or two better things to do. "Essential Being" is a concept that comes from the Platonic tradition. It refers to the fundamental reality of the object at hand. I gave a few examples of this. Another example you may find more palatable is The Conservation of Mass and Energy in physics. It's real. It's real beyond each and every instance that happens of it. You can't touch it. You can only see when objects participate in this interaction (in fact you do every day when you look outside and see the sun).

    I have a funny feeling AC Doyle would agree with that. I think Bentham would have a very hard time making a case against it. Aristotilians take it as fact. When I say "nothing but what they can touch" I mean it in the most extreme cases. Atoms don't exist to romantics.


    Is it? Or are the interaction of various neurotransmitters an effect of the soul participating in love?

    I think, Xev, we are at an impasse, because I doubt there's anything I can say to prove to you that there are nonpysical beings which we can participate in, and I doubt that you're going to be able to say anything that's going to prove to me that there isnt.

    Well, if you'd read the previous thread, we're trying to pin down a definition. Of course, we never will because you're mixing Platonics, Aristotilians, Romantics, Rationalists and Postmodernists. I'm not sure you could get them all to agree on directions to the local pizza place, much less something so complex as Love.

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    The definition you gave is a bad definition though. The dictionary definition will always be bad when you discuss philosophy because a dictionary simply collects the definitions which come out of various literature. It doesn't value whether it is using the word correctly or incorrectly, or what the value of that particular piece of literature is. So, you get a bizarre mix of the above five traditions, which all may or may not be valid.

    For instance, love is certainly not sexual passion. There are many times which I have experienced sexual desire for someone that I certainly didn't love. In fact, I can remember a couple times having sexual desire for people I couldn't stand even being in the same room with. Obviously that wasn't love.

    Very likely, that is what their press statement would have said. I imagine that is what they would like people to think. but that is simply not true. They didn't champoin beauty in nature. At best they championed pretty things in nature. There simply isn't spiritual anything for the Romantics. I don't know where you're getting that from. Beauty is found in form, structure and the objects relationship to the Good, and those are exactly what the Romantics denied. During this time you have Hedonism (the philosophy not the lifestyle) becoming outrageously popular. In fact this popularity is what shaped western notions of justice, crime and punishment up until today. Whenever you hear the phrase "death penalty as a deterrenat to crime", that is the Hedonist movement at work.
     
  14. ele Registered Senior Member

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    187
    "quote:
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    However it was also about the beauty in and the value of the beauty in nature and the world around us, and that was not just a physical beauty but a spiritual and aesthetic beauty for many of the Romantics. I think this can be seen in the work of the great romantic poets such as Byron, Keats and Wordsworth. The movement also emphasised heightened feelings and the experience of experience and individuality as opposed to conformity and thought and questioning and curiousity as opposed to dull and settled thought patterns. It championed the creative, the passionate, the interesting and the every day, but not he pretentious and conforming upperclasses.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------



    Very likely, that is what their press statement would have said. I imagine that is what they would like people to think. but that is simply not true. They didn't champoin beauty in nature. At best they championed pretty things in nature. There simply isn't spiritual anything for the Romantics. I don't know where you're getting that from. Beauty is found in form, structure and the objects relationship to the Good, and those are exactly what the Romantics denied. During this time you have Hedonism (the philosophy not the lifestyle) becoming outrageously popular. In fact this popularity is what shaped western notions of justice, crime and punishment up until today. Whenever you hear the phrase "death penalty as a deterrenat to crime", that is the Hedonist movement at work."

    where i got it from is my interpretationa nd understanding of the romantic movement as expressed in romantic poetry. see, as someone who is one and who thus understands what is being said i can see these things in the movement that you do not. So yes, mayeb it reads as apress release to you, but to people like me it is the reality of what Romanticism is about. the movement away from tradition in painting was also towards a naturalism and a beleif int he value of the natural and nature.

    If you find your self unable to be moved by sights or images or descriptions of beauty and unable to be moved by the beauty of a person, physical or spiritual, that does not mean that it is not there . it may mean you have not had sufficient practice- i know i had to become aware of the beauty in paintings. the relation to the good you speak of is not a relation the romantics woudl think worthy of pontification but it is not necessarily excluded from their intuitive experience and instinct and it certainly was not excluded from the depth of meaning int heir poetry, if interpreted appropriately. my first interest in philosophy at all was rised by interpretations of romantic poetry, and also of shakespeare.
     
  15. Riomacleod Registered Senior Member

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    From the Introduction to the Principle of Morals and Legislation by Jeremy Bentham.
    This is sort of drifting topic, but the above is classic Romantic philosophy. In fact you have a whole series of Utilitarian writers after Bentham, and all were doing their writing during the height of the Romantic period.

    Again, I say that a lot of the things the romantics call beautiful are merely pretty. The Beauty of a person has very little to do with their physical features, and much more to do with who they are. I mean, who is the more beautiful person-someone who looks like George Clooney and is a serial killer, or someone who looks like Wallace Shawn and is mentally astute and caring and whatnot?
     
  16. ele Registered Senior Member

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    187
    The latter and i think that Romantics appreciate that the beauty of the spirit is important. Yes, we also appreciate physical beauty, but i know to me in my life the ideals of romanticism have not been reflectedd in my atttraction to looks but to the beauty of spirit, and to the beauty of nature.

    Perhaps there is a diffeeence in our undersatnding in the usage of the word or it has more than oine usage, but after all, what one gets out of the works of the romantic poets and artists is what one gets out of them and i have gotten from them what i say to you.

    I dont feel that the quote is relevant. Utilitarianism isnt Romanticism.
     
  17. Xev Registered Senior Member

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    10,943
    Riomacloud:
    You're ignoring the argument. Let me repeat: life and choice are inextricably linked. You cannot live without choosing. Choice is the essence of freedom, and the for-itself is always choosing.

    How does this lead to solipsism or nihilism?

    How do you seperate the two?

    I wasn't aware that he was considered a Romantic.

    Nor was Bentham.

    Give one Romantic who said this

    Ockham's razor.

    The burden of proof is on you, though. In any case, we may as well drop it. I cannot sympathize with faith.

    Really? I've never desired anyone I didn't like. Perhaps love and sex, both being so intertwined with communication (see Bataille's "the essence of love is communication) are indeed not as seperate as our vapid, passionless culture would have it.

    The Romantics didn't champion beauty in nature?

    Perhaps you ought to write a thesis showing this, as the contrary is not only true, but widely accepted as one of the cardinal tenets of Romanticism.

    Uh huh. And Hegel was a pizzaboy.

    Your tendancy to spout random, unsubstantiated metaphysical theories becomes aggravating. If you want to play with Plato, let's do it:

    What evidence is there that the Good exists?

    No, it's not. And Bentham was not a Romantic, he was a Utilitarian. Indeed, I'd say that Panopticium stands contrary to everything the Romantics believed.
     
  18. Xev Registered Senior Member

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    10,943
    ele:
    '
    The Romantics indeed didn't place much emphasis on sexuality.

    Ah, but don't be so willing to accept relativism. If you can make a good case, that matters.
     
  19. Riomacleod Registered Senior Member

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    What evidence is there? Or what evidence is there that you'll accept? Unfortunately, I can't pick up Good and show it to you. I'd take a picture, but we both know that it's not going to show anything. Even if it did, it'd be blurry and mainly covered by trees. People would argue that it's not really walking in the simian manner that it should and there would be tape missing from the film :>

    Anyway, my 8:30am proof of the existance of The Good is thus:

    1:
    If Good exists, it must be an infinite mode of existance.
    I am a finite mode of existance.
    Therefore if the good exists, it must be greater than myself.

    2:
    If the good exists, it is expressed in fundamental order in beauty, nature-in a macro and micro scale, in human psychology and human soceity.
    Fundamental order exists in Beauty, nature, psychology and soceity. One overriding example of this order is known as the Golden Ratio, or theta.
    The Good is expressed.

    3:
    If something is expressed, it exists.
    The Good is expressed.
    The Good exists.

    4:
    An object is greater than the sums of its parts, and greater than particular instances of its existance.
    Components of the Good include Beauty, Order, Justice, and Rationality.
    The Good is greater than all four put together.
     
  20. Xev Registered Senior Member

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    10,943
    Oh puh-fucking-lease. I can't stand the "postmodernist" "evidence is all subjective!" crap.

    That's not a proof, it's a description.

    So you've defined good to exist as something that you are certain exists?
    Why bother with it? Ockham's razor.

    Now you're just getting circular. See above.

    You have to prove the first assertion.

    Come back when you can make some rational arguments, I've heard better proofs of God's existence.
     
  21. Riomacleod Registered Senior Member

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    I agree, and never said that evidence was subjective. On the other hand, you seem content to put your fingers in your ears and shout "lalalalalalalalala" during most of my posts.


    Uhm. It's a formal proof. If you're not down with formal logic, I apologise, and looking at it, the following line should be line #3:

    Infinite things are greater than finite things.

    I assume you're arguing this because you either don't see that there is fundamental order in the universe, or that you're misinterpreting the entire proof. Occam's razor doesn't apply here, but is just used as a hand-waving dismissal. I'm begining to think that my "what evidence will you accept" is begining to gain some ground here. The good isn't fundamental order, it is expressed as fundamental order. Sort of like how the universal law of gravitation is expressed every time I fall out of my chair, but the universal law of gravitation ISN'T every time I fall out of a chair. They are finite examples of an infinite property of the physical world.

    How is that circular? I'd argue that that is the fundamental premise of science itself, that is "if something is expressed, it exists". The point was just to make my claim obvious so there would be as little wordplay as possible in disagreement. Obviously I wasn't specific enough.

    You seriously expect me to have to prove that something infinite is is larger than the sum of its finite instances? How about this:

    There is no number of finite things that can be added together to achieve an infinity.
     
  22. gendanken Ruler of All the Lands Valued Senior Member

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    Whoa-ho. What a nice little thread I've found here. Finally.

    I only see two Occam's razors here:
    Asked the question:
    The answer replied was:

    .
    Precice.

    And:
    Romecloud:
    On what good is and what its not.

    I'm seeing a sloppy mess being made of poor Occam. For every problem to whatever degree of complexity there's always an answer that is neat, sharp, and wrong.

    There are biological strings to heroin, cocaine, and tylenol.
    "Love" is not like heorine. Neither is "need". If so, then Depo-Provera would work and both Ted Bundy and the Green River psycho will happily tell you otherwise.

    But where the human mind is concerned in its need, its one for an existence extended. This is pscyho-selfishness. Not as brutally physicall as the need for a stimulant.

    The negation of everything is a servitude. Therefore you cannot have nothing. The problem is in hyperbolizing other people to be something way past nothing to everything. The 'need' then is usually filled with a surrogate.

    I've wondered about love plenty myself and I refuse to believe its subjective. That's a wishy washy scapegoat that's both lazy and modern.

    Stirner, who came waaaaaaay before Nietzche, wrote about "The Unique" which is a mood or 'current' trilling inside each and every one of us that has no name, no calling, and no strings tying it down internally or externally. I'm thinking that giving this to someone, or showing this to them in silence is what love is.

    That would be a bond unbreakeable. It would be a submission to a *thing* that defies history and margins.
     
  23. disposable88 My real name is Rick Registered Senior Member

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    Chemically speaking, love is almost no different than trust.

    We all have friends, but do we also have friends that we *love*? Do we really love them? No. Sorry, we just don't.

    So what makes that "true love" any different? It is the fact that this person, who you supposadly love - has something that makes them unique physically or mentally about them that subconsciously intrigues you and forces you to want to be around them all the time.

    There are five kinds of love:

    1.) I love fishing
    2.) I love my mom
    3.) I love my friend
    4.) I love my lover
    5.) I love smart people

    Unfortunatly, the only true "love" is #4, which is just a combination of chemicals in the brain anyway.
     

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