– LOVE is as beautiful as it is destructive.
Have you ever felt love at least once in your life? Or just the illusion of it?
LOVE: To call it a feeling or an emotion seems to be dismissing it a bit. There’s always more to love. It drives us to do the craziest things but also cripples us from getting to places we wish we could be.
LOVE is our highest value. We all crave for it , but it is also the source of considerable anxiety. Firstly, we worry whether we are entirely normal because it frequently feels as if we are not expressing love the way we should be. Or to be loved the way we want.
Love is beautiful in theory but confusing in practise. If I have to explain what love actually is and the idea of it, I’ll admit to myself that I can’t. Because even I don’t know much about love. We all understand love through our best and worst experiences of relationships.
We think that we need love to be alive and to have purpose for our lives. And everyone has their own way of showing love.
Love is the most powerful emotion a human being can ever experience. The strange thing is, that almost nobody knows what love is. Why is it so difficult to find love? That is easy to understand, if you know that the word “love” is not the same as one’s feeling of love.
The word love is used as an expression of affection towards someone else (I love you)
But it also expresses pleasure (I love chocolate).
The word “love” is used for many expressions of different sets of feelings.
What does love mean to you ? Is it something that makes you want to sing and dance joyfully, experience butterflies in your stomach, or show concern for the other person?
The Ancient Greek philosophers have already found several sorts of love. Here are nine Greek terms for love to help you appreciate how complicated this emotion can be and how each type of love differs.
Types of Love According to the Ancient and Modern Greeks
1. EROS OR SEXUAL PASSION
Eros, named after the Greek god of fertility, was a mischievous god of passion and fertility, who shot arrows into the hearts of humans and immortals, causing them to experience an overpowering yearning for one other. Although this desire has the potential to be misinterpreted as love, it is mostly motivated by physical attraction. That is where the names “erotic” and “erotica,” which are now used to characterise human sexuality, originated.
Lust – or sexual desire – is frequently confused with romantic love. Sexual attraction can be a powerful and overwhelming experience that might lead to inappropriate decisions. Although sexual desire is not a sort of love in and of itself, it is often an important component of love, particularly between passionate couples.
The Greeks were terrified of Eros because it involved a loss of control. Which is strange, considering many couples nowadays crave to control in their relationships. Isn’t it true that we all want to fall “madly” in love?
2. PHILIA OR DEEP FRIENDSHIP
Philia is a platonic sensation, in contrast to Eros’ physical, sexual character. While it is not as exciting as Eros, it is frequently more fulfilling and rewarding over time.
Philia, on the other hand, isn’t limited to non-sexual and non-romantic partnerships. It is a necessary component of romantic love between partners, and any relationship that does not have it is unlikely to continue. When Eros is present but not Philia, the love is generally possessive and self-centred.
Is your lover your best friend too?
Many psychologists feel that for two people to be best together, according to ancient Greek philosophers (and many psychologists today). When Philia is added to Eros, a possessive love transforms into one based on shared aims and enjoyment.
Plato, the Greek philosopher, believed that the combination of Philia and Eros produced the finest kind of love, which he called “friendship between lovers”
It’s all about being loyal to your friends, making sacrifices for them, and sharing your feelings with them.
We should all consider how much philia we have in our lives. It’s a question in an age when we try to refer to people as “friends” on Facebook or “following” on Instagarm.
“What does it mean to love a friend? It means to have family where there are no genetics involved. We meet people throughout our lives who leave their mark, regardless of whether this relationship lasts until we’re old, or it’s only intended for a passing moment. They make the hard times seem less horrible, while creating spaces of euphoric instances in our memories“. – C.S. Lewis
3, STORGE OR DEVOTED LOVE
Storge is a variant of Philia, and it mainly refers to love amongst family members. While Storge’s care and dedication are important aspects of Philia’s relationship, it may also be one-sided. When a parent looks after a child and makes them feel secure, comfortable, and safe without expecting anything in return, this is a great example of Storge.
Despite the fact that Storge appears to be the antidote to Eros, they are both highly natural, biological, and instinctual. Storge is most common among married couples who are raising children together. This type of love is highly regarded in Western culture, particularly among Christians.
4. PRAGMA OR MATURED LOVE
Pragma is a key component of making long-term relationships work, despite being the least exciting type of love. Pragma is a type of love that is based on duty, reason, and a common goal. Pragma, like Philia, is not limited to romantic relationships, however it is an important component of romantic love.
Personal sacrifices for the benefit of your partner, making life and career decisions that are best for your partnership rather than simply for yourself, and completing the everyday duties and responsibilities required to maintain a happy family are all examples of Pragma manifestation.
Pragma love is the most difficult to develop and maintain, as it needs constant effort, dedication, and, in certain cases, selflessness. In the long run, however, the results are frequently quite rewarding.
Pragma is about making compromises and having patience and tolerance in order to help the relationship work over time.
“We spend much too much time and energy for “falling in love,” but we need to learn about how to “stand in love.” Pragma is all about standing in love and attempting to offer love rather than simply receiving it“. – Fromm, Enrich (psycho analyst)
5. LUDUS OR PLAYFUL LOVE
Ludus is a Greek word that means “love” and is the polar opposite of Pragma. Ludus is a carefree and playful love, whereas Pragma is long-term and based on responsibilities.
Imagine a causal relationship where you are having fun and living in the moment, and you’ll have a great illustration of Ludus. Flirting and teasing, dancing, seduction, and casual sex are all common ways to express it. Although the pleasure of sexual desire is a part of Ludus, these partnerships are not always selfish or shallow – if mutual respect is shown, it can be satisfying for both sides. And it doesn’t have any commitment like other kinds of love.
Adult foolishness may be disapproved by the society, yet a bit more ludus can be exactly what we need to spice up our love life.
6. MAINA OR OBSESSIVE LOVE
Have you ever met someone who is completely addicted to a single person to the point of being unhealthy? Maybe you even referred to them as a maniac? Mania was the name given to this form of love by Greek philosophers.
It is compatible with sexual and pleasurable like Eros and Ludus, but not with Pragma or Philia. Anxiety, emotional instability, jealously, and possessiveness are common symptoms of mania.
Nowadays, the terms “mania” and “manic” are used in psychiatry to represent aspects of some mental diseases, as well as to describe extreme interest or obsession..
Although a small obsession is usual in the early stages of a relationship, excess Mania that is unbalanced by other forms of love can lead to dependency and even stalking, or violence in the long run.
7. MERAKI OR CREATIVE ENDEAVORS
Merak is a modern Greek word derived from the Turkish, which means “to do something with passion, innovation, and commitment when you put your whole heart and soul into it.”
Meraki is a term that is frequently used to describe creative or artistic endeavours such as painting, singing, or making music. It can also be seen in the kitchen, when decorating a room, or when preparing a good table.
To describe your love for your lover, you don’t have to paint a beautiful painting of them or create a beautiful piece of music. Meraki can be shown even in the form of a making a wonderful meal to your partner!
8. PHILAUTIA OR SELF LOVE
Aristotle, the Greek philosopher, felt that loving oneself, or Philautia, was a requirement for loving others. Self-love is useful in all aspects of life, including relationships, and people who love themselves are more capable of giving and receiving all types of love.
A lack of self-love is often at the basis of many destructive behaviours in a relationship. When a person loves themselves more than anybody else, however, self-love can soon become toxic. Self-love that is unhealthy is defined by an inflated ego that is based on social standing, abilities, or accomplishments rather than genuine values.
Self-esteem that is not based on social standing or competitiveness with others is a sign of healthy self-love. Instead, it is founded on self-forgiveness and acceptance.
9. AGAPE OR SELFLESS LOVE
Agape is an unconditional love that is not affected by external circumstances. Agape love typically inspires acts of kindness and charity. It appears reasonable to suggest that a society without Agape would be unable to operate, given our society’ need on one another.
Agape is the most selfless type of love since it requires no acceptance. However, it frequently has huge benefits for the one who is doing it — not just in terms of people responding with love or prizes, but also in terms of the people’s mental and emotional well-being. Agape love is known to increase self-love, and higher degrees of healthy self-love are common.!
Greek has a good imagination and is one of the world’s richest languages. Love, on the other hand, is frequently more complicated than words can describe.
Although Greek philosophers found many varieties of love, its forms and expressions tend to mix and blend in diverse combinations in reality. Knowing Greek love terms and identifying different sorts of love might help you and your relationship develop.
Don’t typically focus on a single romantic relationship, but we seek to find all of our various loves wrapped up in a single person or soul mate.
Not only should you seek Eros, but you should also grow philia by spending more time with old friends and developing ludus by dancing the night away. And I’m sure the cup of tea you made with Meraki will be appreciated by your lover.
Furthermore, we have to let go of our obsession with perfection. Don’t expect your lover to offer you with all the types of love all of the time. Recognize that a relationship may begin with a lot of Eros and ludus, then shift to more pragma or agape as time goes on.
By recognising the extent to which all of these types of loves are present in your life, you may find that you have a lot more love than you ever imagined (even if you don’t have a physical partner).
Your feelings for your boyfriend and for your mum are not the same. Even the love you have for your relationship differs. You experience many emotions at various situations and people.
But still, we use the same word. It is easy to understand that a confusion is easily made while communicating. I can say “I love you” to two different people (and mean it), but I am actually feeling in a different way.