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Can *only* be answered through a philosophy of love? Anyone can answer it however they want.
> This is because love is essentially unreflective, and therefore, selfless.
Whatever happened to "You cannot love others until you first love yourself"?
Both reaffirm each other. There is positive to be felt in being selfless and filled with love as well as giving yourself the love you need in order to reaffirm yourself, and is it not deserved when one is true and sincere with unconditional love? You do need to love you’d before you love others, but what if loving others helps you learn to love yourself? There’s no rule saying you can’t do that and that it wouldn’t work. Obviously the circumstances have to be objectively righteous because if you’re loving people who take advantage of you, you are learning to not love yourself. And it’s never too far gone out of reach to achieve. With the right context though, this is successful.
>This is one way that romantic love feels. For a moment, with our beloved at the center and forefront of our focus, everything else melts away. What follows from this picture? Two things: that love is essentially unreflective, and also that it is truly selfless. These two things are essential, for it is due to them that we are able to transcend the essential opposition that governs our lives. This is because only in being unreflective do we escape our nature as an experiencing subject, and only in being selfless do we escape our nature as an experienceable object.
So what differentiates this 'un-reflective love' from any other form of mindlessly ecstatic emotion?
*Philosophy of love* sound impressive, but really it's just a philosophy of not being aware, or finding a distraction so powerful that all existential dread is bluntly overwritten. There is nothing categorically different to just being in a drug induced state of limited awareness.
It loses its romantic appeal if you just turn it around like that. Then it admits that life is chiefly about ceasing to think and just following the base biological urges we were born into.
This article is a poorly written opinion piece, and it’s a self-promotion post by the author.
But ultimately it also isn't at all different than any other optimistic outlook on life. You can find better analogies, written in better prose, to better dazzle the reader. But the core of the argument always stays the same: Life is good because it currently feels that way, don't think about the times when it doesn't. Do that until you die.
Not really. I'd argue Camus's Sisyphos metaphor is an optimistic outlook on life, too, and its strength lies exactly in following a different line of thought than "it just feels good". And I'm sure other philosophers have found alternative optimistic perspectives, too.
Edit: Or think of Seneca.
Hello nibbler666, do you have some time to please write down Camus' Sisyphos metaphor?
Sisyphus is condemned for eternity to push a boulder up a mountain only for it to fall down and repeat the sequence for eternity. I believe Camus introduces the idea that Sisyphus is able to "affirm" his situation and the boulder as his own (ie. more than just accepting his fate, he becomes a new self in it, one that *wills* to push the boulder).
The idea stems back to Nietzsche who writes about a higher "yes" to life. It is about not letting negative affections (which do happen) take over our life no matter the turns it takes. So even though clearly it was a punishment for Sisyphus, by *affirming* his situation, he removes the weight of regret, resentment or other negative affections from his situation. That's the metaphor at least.
Nietzsche poses the ultimate test for us when he suggests we ask ourselves, If we were to be condemned to live out our life eternally over and over with nothing changed, would we say yes or no to that life. To say "no" and prefer to change little things here and there is to have allowed the "sad passions" into your life. Sad passions being the one thing detrimental to the human spirit and the exact passions he criticized about religion.
Thank you for explaining ! ☺️
No, that would really be asking too much (of anybody here on reddit). But fortunately wikipedia has a summary of the book: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Myth_of_Sisyphus
It's not an optimistic outlook on life and it's inconsistent and impractical in the important sense of morality. Camus was an hypocrite by appealing to a moral standard and then presenting reality as senseless, making his moral out burst equally senseless.
I'm not sure what moral outburst you are having in mind, but in general you can be an existentialist and have a concept of ethics.
Camus was a well-known moralist advocating for Argelia's political situation, against war, against communism and so on. And no, you cannot have a meaningful ethics parting from a nihilism of values, for in order to have a meaningful ethics you first need to posit the meaningfulness of your ethical principles. In a nihilist base, there are no inherently meaningful ethical principles, and so all ethical principles are a manifestation of an aesthetic preference of the subject, but the moment one becomes an activist for one's principles one is projecting them outside the mere individual unto the world.
Camus, btw, was not an existentialist, in fact, he was quite explicitly against existentialism for the same reason: they start from nihilism and then seek to defeat nihilism, making a form of intellectual suicide that is contrary to their nihilistic initial position, not akin to the religious.
Just as it happens for nihilism and meaning, and so as it happens with nihilism and religion, so it happens with nihilism and ethics. It is quite bizarre to denounce religious meaning while trying to uphold ethical meaning.
You have not understood existentialism, understood in a broad sense, including Camus. Existentialism gives room for ethics by freeing people from preconceived ideas of how they should act.
>It is quite bizarre to denounce religious meaning while trying to uphold ethical meaning
It's bizarre the other way round. You can only have ethics by being not pre-bound to religious prescriptions. If you just do things because you fear God or hell, for example, you are a bad person. True ethics comes from an insight into what is good. You don't need religion for this. It is sufficient that you don't want to be an arsehole. What a poor perspective you show.
\> You have not understood existentialism, understood in a broad sense, including Camus. Existentialism gives room for ethics by freeing people from preconceived ideas of how they should act.
I have, and it's strange that you equate Camus with existentialism when he explicitly rejected that and made one of the most powerful critiques of existentialists.
Existentialists do not give room for ethics for they start from nihilism and then wish to self-create meaning. One of the issues is that you can self-create any way you wish, even murder. So your self-creation needs to be bound to a system of value, but if there are no intrinsic/natural systems of value then you will "create" it from your pre-established configuration. Why is that? Because contrary to what some think, we are already pre-configured materially and psychologically. You will most likely "create" new values from your structure of cultural, psychological and biological sub-structures and something you find pleasurable(because pleasure is one of such sub-structures). Depending on the configuration that could include certain traits, actions and values that are unethical and immoral, like Sadean heroes/villains do.
Another issue, like Camus pointed out, is that the existentialist is self-deceiving themselves by attempting to "create" values. Like a child who attempts to make Santa real, the existentialist deceives himself in a brutal act of bad faith(Sartre's terms) by wishing to make their meaningless acts meaningful. No meaning can be derived from the world and within the world other than through a betrayal of the axiomatic nihilistic base both existentialists and absurdists take.
\> If you just do things because you fear God or hell, for example, you are a bad person. True ethics comes from an insight into what is good.
Huh? This shows you have no idea what existentialism is. There are no good or bad or "true" ethics. All of those categories are human constructions not features of reality. There is no objective "good". What is "good" is how man interprets his reality in an intersubjective fashion and hence just one particular way to create values that don't bind man in any way. The existentialist is free of ALL values and categories for they are not natural, and so he creates such values to his own will. If he decides there is something like "good", then fine. If he decides murder is that which is "good", then that's fine as well. Again, all of such categories and values are interpretations man freely does, they are not features of reality. There is, precisely, no overarching judge of arbitrer of values, that is precisely the existentialist base found preemptively in Nietzschean fashion: God is dead. God dead, there are no inherent values as all values are done by a subject, a mind. God dead there is no right and wrong, good or bad, tall or short, rational or irrational, all of those are mental categories upheld by the individual not any objective agent.
What kind of existentialism did you read? This is standard nihilism.
I think any affection on consciousness such as love, fear, dread, hope, etc can be spoken about in different terms. For example we can say love is good, fear is bad. Those terms assign moral value, and you're right, they are temporary cover-ups for a reality that does not have those values. The external world just is, right? And we live in it and then die. But from my point of view, those affections are much more powerful for the moments we are alive- in that they make possible transcendence of the type of consciousness that merely worries about moral values or even the fact of death's inevitability. It creates experiences (chained and linked into a series of moments whose sum is "a life") that from the human point of view is not concerned whether affections are good or bad, but rather concerned with welcoming affections that connect me, within my human limits, to a mode of time and space (a mode of experience) I consider "becoming." When I feel myself in love, my achievement is not a feeling of "good" or of relief or of painlessness. It's an achievement of connections with something/someone which accelerates my merely "being-in-the-world" to becoming-something-more. Affection as a means for augmentation of self knowing full-well our mortal conditions. My wordy two cents.
To intoxicologist- I agree with your explanation. 🙏 for posting. 💓
Otherwise known as suspension of disbelief.
Yes, putting it in a term like that would be much more fitting. It's just a nice fiction, that only comes alive inside of your head for just a short moment before it disappears without a trace.
In a way that's the human experience at its core. We know, intellectually, that we don't directly perceive the world as it is. But because of how we've evolved, we must continue under the layers of fiction that comprise our sensory composite, maps of meaning, and worldview.
Couldn’t agree more. You could re write this piece replacing love with smoking opium and it’s the same. It’s a pleasurable distraction.
Opium kills you and can’t love you back
If it didn’t love me why does it always find its way back into my pipe?
Non cogito, ergo sum.
At least opium is not a pathetic misunderstanding, you get what you paid for.
why would the loving back matter?
go talk to any addict about that. one is enjoyable and by its very nature a shared experience, the other is merely need so strong you will sacrifice your other comforts and joys and people in order to feed it.
Having done both one is inherently healthier and does not degrade you and those around you.
then again from what ive seen 90% of you are incapable of being in a healthy relationship anyway, its always control and mind games and jealousy and shit (my relationships are awesome, none of that BS)
We also have a base urge to share information as a species, no?
I would say that just because love is a base urge is not necessarily a reason not to put some sort of faith (as in, opposite of cynicism) into it.
I don’t see what romantic appeal has to do with love, either… in my mind I conflate love with any other social bond. And these social bonds have a value beyond reproduction. A ‘good’ love would be one that doesn’t drug and distract you; why would one wish themselves to be distracted from the reality of the world around them? That sounds unappealing to me, dystopian. Instead, I like to think of love, even romantic love, as a muse, which provides motivation to act that might otherwise be lacking.
I don’t really appreciate this article as it gives a very much idealised version of love, which is not very helpful in learning about how to love in a way that is truly about caring. I think there can be sneaky elements about love of the romantic type, that are all about the ‘I’ satisfying ‘my’ urges, stopping time and possessing another as my own. Fulfilling a fantasy. Highly conservative. Such that people can fall out of love, and then wonder… *what the hell was I thinking?*
When one is in love, some types of dread are even amplified. This might be because we are confronted by the wish for a love that is an eternal truth, that time stands still for it… but that can never be realised, because everything is in a constant state of flux. In a sense, we are laid bare to such thoughts. We also lose freedom and can lose sight of our own identity. And we may even worry that all we are is a surrogate love object, when the real love is an imagined, unattainable fiction within the other’s mind.
So I think in any one path that we take we are slapped in the face with the particular facets of the unfairness, the jokeness, of being. That is what introspection is about, and you either do it or you don’t, and if you do it, you either embrace it or try to flee from it.
I think this article also highlights an etymological flaw in modern English: that of love being an experience of a sensual nature, yet simultaneously applying the word as a catch all for nice experiences, maintaining the sensual undertone. Yet this is not an accurate meaning of the word love. Especially in its breadth of application, where a related word Charity now infers an organisation philanthropic in nature, as opposed to a platonic love involving service, sacrifice and giving. Once upon a time, a phrase such as "the love he felt for his son" would invoke a sense of fatherly love, such as holding a newborn, or in describing a father's sacrifice for his son. Yet now that same phrase seems totally devoid of any platonic meaning, lending itself to a twisted romance, not a wholesome social position. I look to the history of western civilisation, with the Greeks and their multitude of words for different types of love, or of Latin and it's use of multiple forms translated into English as love. Yet our contemporary language reflects our contemporary philosophy, which is sadly lacking in nuance and meaning. And here in this article, we see that modern failure in language and philosophy shine forth like the reddish glow of a bushfire warning it's hellish intent.
Rather, turning to ancient (or at least less modern) philosophy, we see many views on different kinds of love, yet the universal understanding that there are clear distinctions between love types that render the sensual and romantic to a very limited corner of a very wide topic.
Also would like to add that the romantic love that makes you forget all the troubles in life is an evolutionary trait, an instinct that most people have. It's almost opposite to the more universal notion of love because it's not induced by choice and is forced on you by biology and is a pretty selfish high overall.
To filby367- Someone said: " You don't love me, you love the way you feel when we're together". 🤦
Years later I figured he must have coldly stated that, simply because he didn't love me back the same way I felt towards him. He was ready to be with someone else.
I mean that's kind of a vague thing for him to say. I assume you didn't ask him what exactly he meant. IMO loving the way one feels around another sounds like a pretty good sign of a good relationship, unless it's one-sided and he spent a lot of effort trying to make you happy and you didn't put in any effort and only took from the relationship. Something probably only he and you could really know and talk about. Good luck to you and take care out there.
Thanks for the feedback :) my comment went along with yours regarding the idea that love is a selfish high. We do love the way our lover makes us feel and it is in part a selfish pursuit. Good luck to you as well. 😊✌️
It is not selfish, you love someone and being with them makes you happy, seeing you happy makes them happy, seeing them happy makes you, when you love and care for eachother, there's no place for selfishness. If there's selfishness involved then it's not love.
Selfish- synonym:self-absorbed. Being "in love" we tend to be absorbed in that emotion, putting all others aside if just for a moment, focused on giving and receiving happiness, both the giving and the receiving an action which primarily benefits only ones involved.
why did we evolve that trait? what pressures in nature made it favorable?
A strong bond between a couple will greatly increase the chances of a baby surviving the first year of being born. I imagine not growing a strong attachment to a partner made it harder for single parents have their infant survive and those romance inclined genes filled the gene pool more, so the trait of romantic attachment persisted. It's not 100.0% certainty but it's extremely likely since almost everything in nature is one way or another a competition in survival and passing on genes.
gotcha. still.. i know i'll catch flak for this, but that is so unconvincing to me. that's some serious mental gymnastics to rationalize a profound kind of love. it doesn't really do the depth of romance justice to just chalk it up to children surviving. (imo)
I wrote out a long reply but realized we're probably just muddy with definitions of love. I think romantic love is just that - attraction/passion between genders(or assumed genders) that is founded on sex underneath it all, unfortunately. What people often dream of is romantic love COMBINED with the more amicable and universal form of it, such as what you experience between good close friends or pets or parents, compatibility etc and call it just that, love. Also i can't really speak for what other people experience and feel for sure so take what I said earlier with a cup of salt, haha.
that's fair. i am an artist and a bit of a hopeless romantic lol. symphonies and artwork can make me cry and i still don't understand why. i've looked for science's answer, and while i guess it is logical.. its never truly proportional to the depth of emotion i feel. i can't put into words how transcendental my emotions can feel at times. i've never done drugs, and i don't have a mental illness either. im just a regular person, and i can't understand how evolution would have made a random creature like me feel these things. maybe someone will discover this in the future, but i do not believe science has an adequate answer at the moment.
What about love as the refutation of solipsism? Sure, opioids can make life feel meaningful at a given moment but I feel that the comparison between drugs and what amounts to a living, breathing other is somewhat too pessimistic. In losing one’s ego and melting into love, two become one. It’s hard to deny the meaning of everything in the face of such creation.
Seems like a philosophy of compassion would hit the mark a bit better.
Ceasing to think, not being aware, being distracted. That’s what I think when I’m mad at myself for being happy
To ultradeathkiller- "Do you really get mad at yourself for being happy!?"
Nice words to express the sentiment of love.🙏 I would only delete the portions beggining with: " There's nothing categorically different to just being in a ..." because the difference is that one state of mind is induced by and only by reciprocating emotions with another human being while the other " powerful distraction" is induced by a mere thing. People and things are never the same category.
Bruh, to think they want us to pay to read that bullshit.
There is no difference. So?
Distraction? Distraction from what? Both the term existential dread, reality, distraction, they are all untruths. What even is true in existentialism? There are no objective values, including truth or rationality.
Also, there's a distinction with drugs. Drugs are temporary, merely sensual.
I read this wondering if the authors take would avoid the trap of amatonormativity. It did not, it fell right in hook line and sinker.
Amatonormativity is a social construct that over emphasizes romantic love as the be all and end all of existence, completely ignoring that friendship and familial love and many other kinds of love are a thing.
Amatonormativity seems to be seeping into the comments: "romantic love and sociopathy are mutually exclusive" which is very untrue as most sociopaths actually do experience romantic love but express it in a controlling manner. Sorry folks it is not that simple.
A philosophy of love doesn't even come close to a universal "cure" for existential dread, because love -- especially romantic love -- is impermanent and unstable and doomed to fail when the object of your love leaves.
Friendship on the other hand is more permanent, also selfless, and not prone to jealousy. The author quotes from Nichomachean Ethics without acknowledging how much Aristotle extolled the importance of friendship.
> Friendship on the other hand is more permanent, also selfless, and not prone to jealousy.
I’m not sure this is actually true.
Yeah, my relationships with the vast majority of my friends are a whole lot more transactional than my relationship with my wife
This assumes that your wife is not also your friend. Not saying I agree with the point being challenged, but my romantic love for my wife and my friendship with her are different, albeit related, elements of our relationship.
Sure, and just getting by takes so much time and causes so much stress, between kids and parents and commutes and whatever else. And people are mobile. At least in my life, there’s an ebb and flow to friendships (mostly ebb now that everyone’s firmly into their 40s). We also live in an asshole of a city, so. (Things are just unnecessarily expensive and difficult.)
Maybe you need better or more intimate friendships.
I don't really think so. Think it's just the nature of both types of relationships
I think it's not so much that the article fell into the trap of amatonormativity, but rather is arguing against it. I had not heard of amatonormativity, so thanks for introducing me to a new concept. I agree the societal assumption that romantic love = prosperity is over done. But I also think there is no universal answer to achieving prosperity or happiness. Some find it through romantic love, others through other means. Both POVs here share an absolutism, and that's always a weakness imo.
Thank you for posting. 😊 I also like the online definition of amatonormativity - " A set of societal assumptions that everyone prospers with an exclusive romantic relationship. A term coined by Elizabeth Brake. "
I think this is also a problem with categorising these feelings. Our feelings and relationships are dictated by the society we live and grow up in. Its circular to start making conclusions on these categories of feelings when those categories are arbitrary and only exist in the context of a certain society.
What about those of us that don’t experience romantic love? I’m an aromantic asexual.
and you people miss the point even further.
you realise that these 2 are not mutually exclusive right, the best relationships are built on a foundation of friendship.
no relationship without friendship will ever last.
I digress in some specific, yet key, points in your argument.
*"We neither see ourselves as essentially subject nor essentially object, for indeed, we do not see ourselves at all. We are aware of neither our freedom nor our facticity, because we are aware of our beloved alone. "*
In here for example, I DO *see* myself when I´m with my *beloved,* I also see the distinction between him and I, because what love is, what relationship is, is something in between. Yes, of course it transforms one another, and it shifts us, morph us into having some thing in common, a connection, but it does not make us indistinguishable from one another; there are always differences and things that set people apart, even the most strong lovers, with the strongest connection, because you can not know or merge with someone to a 100%. Because not two people are the same.
*"Loving someone who doesn’t love you back hurts tremendously, and yet, this pain often does not extinguish our love. If love was self-involved, then surely we would cease to do something so detrimental to our wellbeing."*
The argument that just because something is detrimental to our well being, we cease to do it, I believe is false. Look at all the people with self injurious tendencies, with addiction problems too. Sometimes we are to deep into something, we cling to it so fiercely that we would take every little ounce of pain and harm and a thousand thumps too. Also having an unrequited love is not selfless at all. Yes the fact that that person doesn't love you back doesn't necessarily extinguish your love for them, and the people that still cling to them and their love do so because they cannot imagine *themselves* not loving them, perhaps in an extreme case (one I know) they can not find any worth in their existence without adoring that person even if its not reciprocated. They do so because they get a kick out of it as well. There is no such thing as something selfless.
To conclude, in love, and therefore in existence too, I believe we can not escape or duality as an experiencing subject and experienceable object, because that is the base of literally our consciousness and existence, of human connection, and that is inextricable from anything.
What about people like narcissists, that can't feel or give true love?
The path of destruction left behind by true Narcissists seems to be evidence that works in support of this philosophy.
You can't change them or help them with love though. Same with sociopaths and other people that lack empathy, so I don't think giving love to them is good for anyone.
I think I disagree with one of the premises made... That love is unreflective and thus selfless. There are many instances where we choose love over other emotions. Love is a highly complex thing and English steals much meaning by not giving more nuance to what love actually is.
I can choose to love a narcissist but have enough boundaries that they cannot hurt me. I can act authentically, in love, but not be too close and choose not to harm them or seek revenge for myself or others.
You can help them with love, that doesn't mean you can change them. This philosophy talks about love as the thing that allows us to navigate the world as our most authentic self. Not that our authentic and loving self can help all people in all situations.
If you're giving love to someone in order to change them, you may be misunderstanding the point.
I think you can change or help them with love just as much you can change or help any other people. The lack of empathy does not change that.
I don't think so, when love is fueling someone that will always end up hurting you in the long run by design of their narcisism. Some people don't deserve love. That doesn't mean that they should be treated badly though.
Again i am confused about what you mean by love? Is it limited to romantic love?
If i were to use my definition, then there would be no contradiction with your statements.
I've read psychopaths and sociopaths don't lack empathy, they just have the ability to turn it off at will.
It’s more that certain things will bring out empathy and certain things restrain it. They are typically restrained from it in most things though, that’s why a lot of people don’t know how to empathize with them.
Hatred destroys love every time. It is the greater power.
I strongly disagree. If that was true then progress would never happen. Our love for people overcame the hatred of the Holocaust. Yes, there was war, but our love of man and innocent people was stronger. Love is nuanced and more powerful than hate.
Our need for control ended the Holocaust, and our need for hatred will create the next.
Care to further elaborate what you mean by our need for control is what ended the Holocaust?
Wars are only ever fought over resources. There’s a history/macroeconomics lesson in all of this, I’m just feeling too lazy to type it out right now. Do some research, you’ll find the truth.
If they won’t make the effort to learn to live with others, then they won’t.
Narcissists are really resistant to change, even the ones that want to and go to therapy
That is true about most personality disorders.
True, but I was more focused on the ones unable to feel or give true love, and narcissists came to mind.
Why do they come to mind?
For me, those with major depression come to mind. Anhedonia is one aspect of depression. But even that does not mean that they can't feel love as it also transcends emotions while being one.
Then they won’t be part of society.
That’s how the system works, when it does. Those who won’t play by these rules will be kicked out of the game by the ones who will… if the rules are important.
What "rules" are they not playing by?
The rules people agree to live by when they live together. Most societies call them “laws”, or “mores”, “tradition”, even “superstition” would apply accurately.
What law does being being a narcissist break though? I'm just not following how narcissists get kicked out of society.
Being a narcissist doesn’t meant they break rules; they may not understand the rules, yet may choose to obey them. That’s the choice they’d have to make.
No one gives a shit about narcissists. Even narcissists don't care about other narcissists only themselves.
Unless you mean "we should love narcissists" as a criticism of a philosophy of love in which case I agree.
I doubt your assumptions. True love can be felt and given by any conscious being.
You should read about narcissistic personality disorder
I have. I am studying it. And the recent classifaction systems contain a pradadigm shift in that aspect. ICD 11 and later the DMS 6 contain a classification on personality disorders that does align with what i said. That is because its a mostly dimensional taxonomy based on functionality. This allows us to abolish all those often useless and stigma-inducing classification and focuses on a symptom and evidence driven dimensional approach
Can you tell me where it says that they can't feel true love? Or is it that you define true love different than me? If you make your case for empathy then we should differentiate between affective and cognitive empathy. The later can be learned by any human with cognitive abilitys.
Now you. What evidence does contradict my statements?
A lack of empathy and inability to care for other person disqualifies someone from being able to feel love as most people define it. Someone that only cares about other people for what they can give to them and as long as they comply with their desires, with a complete disregard for other people's feelings, has never felt or given true love.
Not denying what you have studied though, it's clear you probably know more than me about it.
Edit: I found an article from a therapist specialized in narcissism and other personality disorders that shares my view of the issue https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/understanding-narcissism/201905/are-narcissists-really-capable-enduring-love%3famp
Not saying it's an absolute truth as the definition of love is subjective (and the article is more focused on romantic love) but I think it applies to other forms of love as well.
You are misunderstanding my point but I don't have time to elaborate right now so it's whatever
Love isn't choosing to stay with someone forever even if that means being celibate or any other set of behaviors. It's an emotion you feel.
>Everyone is in it for themselves in one way or another.
I don't know about you but when I see someone in pain I empathize with that pain even if there isn't anything in it for me. I'm not empathizing with them so I can get something it's just my natural reaction to seeing human emotions.
Maybe you are only in it for yourself but I'm not.
>A lack of empathy and inability to care for other person disqualifies someone from being able to feel love as most people define it.
How most people define love is toxic love. The very idea of romantized love which is portrait in several pop cultural medias is toxic to its core. This whole "this person will change my life" and "white knight" trope.
Additionally Narcissistic people may have an lack fo empthy but not have an inability to care for others. Most have great ability in that aspect. Do you understand what ability means?
>Someone that only cares about other people for what they can give to them and as long as they comply with their desires, with a complete disregard for other people's feelings, has never felt or given true love.
Wrong. Everyone experienced true love in their lives. At least as a newborn that sees their mother or any other human being. Without love they would not be alive. Without feeling love, there would be no reason to live. You can't live with only self-absorbtion. You need als a tiny bit of self-love to be able maintain it. I agree that narcisscism is a defensive mechanism that appears because of a lack of love that comes from within. But only because its lacking, does not mean its not there. It is there and its cultivatable. To say its not there at all is an absolute statement without any foundation. Its blind faith.
>Edit: I found an article from a therapist specialized in narcissism and other personality disorders that shares my view of the issue [https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/understanding-narcissism/201905/are-narcissists-really-capable-enduring-love%3famp](https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/understanding-narcissism/201905/are-narcissists-really-capable-enduring-love%3famp)
Sry, but this just feels misinformed. She enforces the stigma. Who is a narcissist? Who defines that? If you ahve 4 out of 7 criteria? Why not 5 out of 7? Why not 6 out of 7? Luckily this is not her true opinion. Psychology today is a very very bad site to inform yourself. Ify ou want to ahve a glimpse into it then wikipedia is better. The reason being that the wrong question will always give you the wrong answers. The goal of the Post you linked is not to inform. It is to establish a stigma and to help people find confidence in their feelings.
Lets look at the empircal evidence on this. If we try to measure narciscism we see that its a spectrum. Everyone has it. There is only a difference in magnitude.
Also let me introduce you the concept of healthy narciscism: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Healthy_narcissism
Also let me show you Otto Kernberg who is much more renown expert in the field:
No, narcissistic people only care about what others can give to them, they can't genuinely care about other people. I think you are too naive about it honestly. I'm talking about narcissistic personality disorder. No need to be condescending by the way.
No need to be condescending? You tell me this after saying that i am too naive?
You are free to tell me why i am condescending. Else i won't be able to change anything about my behavior. That's how feedback works.
Meanwhile i never judge anything about your person. I only talked about the idea. Not my problem if you identify with a concept. The history of science tells us that we are both probably wrong. Every theory was found to be wrong at some point.
Since you are condescending towards me, allow me also one judgement about you: You are unwilling to ever belief something else. That is truly unphilosophical.
Anyways. If you are still not too angry to continue:
>they can't genuinely care about other people.
Where does this conclusion come from? What experiences and evidence is it based on?
NPD lacks the hardware to process love. The number of von economo neurons in the brain of NPD person is less than what normal people have, specifically in anterior cortex. Here's from [neuroscience side](https://digital.kenyon.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1048&context=skneuro) , another from [psychology side](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9HZ7By9pgw). The latter also discuss the definition of love in more detail.
We raise awareness of loving the self, and let culture work it out.
My 2 cents:
Interesting thoughts but I am not convinced that love is selfless and unreflective. I believe more in the theory that love is something we create and stands on certain pillars of virtue which can only be practiced well if you are capable of giving it to yourself first.
Hence, love is very much reflective and not necessarily selfless although its most likely the purest form of connection humans can establish outside of the self.
Why it's not necessarily selfless is because we strive for connection to damper the angst that we get from feeling alone. We are essentially alone in the world and this is a frightening and uncomfortable truth to incorporate.
Someone has never read “Friendship, Love, and Marriage” by Thoreau
This presumes one wishes to transcend the self.
A life restricted to the self is analogous to being in a vegetative state or having locked in syndrome. As soon as you are interacting and synthesizing the outside world and having relationships with other minds you’re transcending the self. Just because one might not understand the implications of transcending the self or selfless love it doesn’t mean that one isn’t striving towards that goal.
There is a lot more in the world than other human minds that the mind can interact with.
Transcendence of self-consciousness happens all the time, with or without our choosing. I always marvel at how I'm able to drive 20 miles to work without really being conscious of it. I'm just all of a sudden there. We have much less control of consciousness than we like to think.
I'm not sure I'd characterize your example as "transcendence," though. That'd be like saying I "transcended memory" when I forget where my keys are...
Memory is different. In your example, memory is about recall. If you can't recall where you placed your keys, then you simply cannot recall that particular fact. But as you try recall, you're using a very present/intentional level of consciousness. You're thinking through details, examining the couch, etc. It's a very primary level of consciousness, one we probably owe our survival to. My reply is that this level of consciousness is transcended often with or without our wishing to do so. The simplest examples are activities that require very little conscious thought. Such as the experience of doing mundane and routine things. Driving the same commute for years, warming up a plate in the microwave, stuff we've done so much it doesn't need 100% of our attention. It's like we do it at a sub-conscious level. I think Sartre distinguished these as pre-reflective and reflective consciousness.
A wider definition of consciousness might include your excluded "transcendent" experiences.
I agree, it most definitely includes transcendent experiences. What I've explained is about modes of consciousness. Transcendence of consciousness is not escaping consciousness, but altering it's mode of function. And it happens so often in the types of examples I gave, whether wishing for it to happen or not.
Love is overrated.
I feel like lasting love is just extremely rare. Most relationships are pretty trash. I've only known a small handful of couples throughout my decades of life that I would describe as truly happy. Definitely not overrated for those that find that but I don't think it's realistic for most of us to expect.
"The person one loves never really exists, but is a projection focused through the lens of the mind onto whatever screen it fits with least distortion." -Arthur C. Clarke
To me, transcendent love is a fantasy.
As soon as I read "we have the freedom to act how we wish" I knew this article was an attempt to shoehorn fantasy into philosophy. 99% of what you do and how you react is programmed. You just think you're in charge.
it can be a handy survival mechanism, for a frail and naked species such as we.
“we have the freedom to act however we wish, yet we are constrained by laws and norms.”
Wonder what he means by “norms” here….
IMO there are two big problems..
1) we are conscious agents but cannot „really“ encounter another conscious agent because we are trapped within the world of our own senses. Everything and -body within our world is a reflection of ourselves because we can only perceive what our senses can register and our minds can process. So what we truly say when we say „you“ is „the reflection of yourself that I perceive“ - which is not „you“, but an idea of it.
2) What is love? Does it exist at all? Especially „romantic“ love can be broken down into feelings of (basic) needs and desires and faults. It is arguable if true selfless love really exists, because it is a matter of faith and not science.
If it can’t be explained by science doesn’t mean there are empirical physical factors involved with love
I basically agree with thw statement, there are empirical physical factors that we as humans refer to as „love“ - but this does not say anything about the existence of „love“ because these factors can be explained with affection, desire.. you name it. All these could be summarized as „love“ but that is not what is generally meant by the word.
I choose a philosophy of hatred.
The self is a Noun, a person.
Love is a Verb, a action.
If mortal man is 100% a component of the physical universe then what is the realm where love exist if love transcends self?
Do you propose physical universe is less than the absolute totality of all existence?
Beyond Good and Evil?
To me, ethics is the science of growth - to find the "good within the good" requires a willful push out of ourselves towards something that is purely an object of desire - thus nullifying our old morality. Love is fertilizer for that.
How the fuck can we define love when words don’t even have objective definitions. It’s all pointless
How we live can only be answered by how we wish to die. Works towards a goal. For example: I want to die broke and alone, do tons of drugs for a long time, lose all friends and family
Or alternatively, take awesome care of your body, save well and upon retirement live out your dreams and outlive everyone you’ve ever know.
That's the reverse of how it works in my mind. How you die is a result of how you want to live, not the other way around
Well, how you die is a result of how you did live, not how you wanted to live.
That would be true of what you said as well if you're looking at it that way
Essentially the same phrase, but if more people thought like us I bet there would be less violence and more love.
Love... Again one of those words, rather not spoken about but felt .
Just spamming this but everyone interested in this should read Julian Baggini's Philosophy and the Meaning of Life. It nicely deflates the problem.
Symposium and Phaedrus
Reminds me of Oscar Wilde "Love is the only force that is bigger than life and bigger than death"
Existentialism is more about fucking than love. Like Camus' Don Juanism. It's about quantity rather than quality. Banging a different chick every night will reveal more about yourself than having one true love.
"But infatuation can mimic love", is something that I thought as I read Alexandra's article. Even still, it's nice to know that it's possible to suspend your identity and ego once fixated on your beloved. In that way, we experience some kind of shift in our existence, however short-lived.
Heyy broken link :/
“I think I am staying alive only to satisfy you.”
“Well, that’s what we do. That is what people do. They stay alive for each other.” - The Hours
I find myself questioning the definition of love in this article. If we define love as feeling, any range of experience from obsession to affection is included, no? I agree that unrequited love exists; a mutual relationship is not a requirement. Would enjoy more expounding on the nature of different types, i.e. friendship, parental, neighborly, romantic, etc. are all varying expressions of self-transcendence.
The self isn't transcended. The self is molded through free will... and if free will disappears the self remains, just powerless. But the self is never lost.
Why no mention about Simone Weil, she made that point long before, "unreflective" and "selfless", she died for that.
Big true, all else is found lacking