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Confusing warm fuzzy feelings with love!
September 23, 1999
10:29 am
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bel
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Hello Tez,

I posted a response to you yesterday morning but it seems it was removed. I don't think I posted anything vulger or wrong. So I will try again, regarding your statement 'We cannot love anyone unless we first love all of humanity'. Do you think this is true or false?

I think that qestion is false, I may be wrong but that is my feeling. I don't love everyone but I do have love for my family and when I was married I did have love for that man at one time. There have been some pretty awful people in my life and I could not love them like I would love my family, how can you love people that have hurt you and commited a wrong against you?

As for liking the one your with, I would think you would have to like as well as love that person otherwise how would your relationship work? I know we all have certain things that annoy us from our partners but that is different from not liking something about them.

Tez if you were a wagering man mmmmm you might lost that bet....Might.....

And I will keep the faith.....:)

Always
Bel

September 23, 1999
10:55 am
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All,

Cold Fusion glitched yesterday, and we were down a couple hours; thus Bel's lost message.

No harm intended Bel, we're not here to delete material unless it is WAY out of line.

Keep it up, thanks, - SC

September 23, 1999
9:15 pm
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Bel. The question about the validity of the statement 'We cannot love anyone unless we first love all of humanity' seems to depend upon one's definition of what the word love means to the individual. Obviously the person who made the statement has a very different understanding of the word than you do.I am sure that in the sense that the author used the word 'love' the statement is probably valid. From your understanding of the word, I agree that the statement is invalid.

I find that there seems to be many definitions of what real love is. There seems to be a lot of confusion caused by the misuse of the term. You hear women saying, "He say that he loves me but he is having an affair. Now he says that he is sorry. Should I take him back?". What does such a man mean by the use of the word love?

For another example some codependents can hate their partner's behaviour yet crave to have their partner's love. They believe that they cannot live with nor without their partner. Is this obsession with another person, love? what do you think?

September 30, 1999
11:57 am
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bel
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Hi Tez,

Well I have had the experience of loving someone but hating their behaviour and how they have treated me. But at the same time I stayed there and took the bad treatment, Why? I guess I felt I would rather take the bad treatment because I didn't want to be alone, I wanted to have some love rather than no love. Do you understand what I am saying, I was taking scraps because that was all I was being offered. Was I obsessed with this person? No I don't believe so, I was just so alone and lonely I was willing to sacrifice myself for his own needs and wants and was putting mine aside. Yes when things were going good I had those warm fuzzy feelings but I guess that was not love was it?

Today I will not do that, I don't need to I deserve the whole meal and no longer will accept those scraps. :). I guess you

Bel

September 30, 1999
12:02 pm
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Sorry my post was cut before I finished it, I was going to say I guess you could say having those warm fuzzy feelings is not necessarly love is it?

Bel

September 30, 1999
5:30 pm
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Bel. Go on you, mate. You are a first class person. When there are first class partners in the offering, why accept being treated as a second class person by anyone if you don't have to.

It seems to me that feelings are not a good indicator of whether we are performing an act of love or not.

For example yesterday, I spotted a few errors in my friend's home page on the web. As he is totally inexperienced in the matter, I undertook to send an email on his behalf to the author of his web page, respectfully pointing out the mistakes.

As I was writing the email, I was very conscious of the size of the ego of the author. I felt anxious lest I offend him. However, I knew that it was in everyone's best interests to point out the errors. I did so with as much tact as I could possibly muster.

I received a large response back which amounted to an attack on my credibility. I didn't feel very good about that either.

At no time did I experience warm fuzzy feelings. Yet, I do believe that my actions were actions of 'love'. I found myself saying 'I'll never do that again'. Then I had to stop and realize that I didn't do it on the condition that I received a favourable response. So I am now - as I write this - dealing with the childhood generated emotion that my interpretation of the author's response provoked.

Conversely, I am sure that adulterous love making feels warm and fuzzy at the time of the act. Yet it is clearly not in any parties best interests and therefore is not an act of love; it is an act of lust.

In regard to determining what is love, sometimes the demarcation lines are very blurred and complex. This is why I think that getting to know the self is so necessary in determining what are acts of love and what are not.

It seems to me that most human beings act out of self interest even when they think they are serving others. Wanting to be 'loved' at any cost is one such self serving motive for becoming a 'doormat' for a partner. It is really in no one's best interests and therefore, in my opinion, doesn't qualify as an act of love.

On the one hand, it seems to me that to be truly loving one has to have deep insights into one's motives and the needs of others. Can a mentally disadvantaged person with no insights into anyone be truly loving? Yes, I think they can be.

I see a paradox here. What do you think about this paradox? What is love?

September 30, 1999
11:55 pm
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Everyone acts in a way to achieve their own happiness and well being even though we sometimes get confused as to what is to our interest and what will preserve our well being.
I think it was stated somewhere here already, but i agree that many times we attach the word if to love. We may feel we love someone but hate their behaviors. Although that brings other questions like- doesn't behavior directly relate to character? In my last relationship, which i feel was the closest i ever came to that fairy tale that i had as an adolescent, I often found myself adding if. I love you if don't drink, make an ass of yourself, as long as you continue being supportive.
Also i agree that one has to know and love oneself before it can occur with another individual. further i think the word is misused at times when it pertains only to an emotion. I would hope that romantic love involves the whole person- spirit, mind and emotions.
I don't know, IT is Confusing! what we once called love, turns out in hindsight to be everything but.

October 1, 1999
1:39 pm
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Love isn't real.
If anyone says any diferent their liars!!!

October 1, 1999
8:19 pm
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Wow! Delilah, what is your definition of love? I hint a little bit of anger and passion in your statement, but of course, I don't get the body language, tone of voice, and facial expressions when reading your response?

I don't necessarily attach the feeling of love to the feeling of happiness. Love can also hurt, cause anger and sadness.

~JC

October 2, 1999
7:48 pm
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To All. Wow! from me too. Thanks all for your excellent and interesting responses.

I would love 🙂 to hear from Delilah as to how she defines the 'love' that she thinks is 'unreal'.

Are feelings a reliable indicator of love?

Are good feelings a function of meeting self-interest related needs?

Is love a type of action, a special feeling, a good intention or combinations of all three? Do feelings come into the equation at all?

When we crave love, what exactly are we craving? What behaviour do we want from others?

October 2, 1999
8:24 pm
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"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perserveres." 1 Cor 13:4-7

I hope it is okay to use this quote from the bible...these ideas are what I was brought up to believe.

~JC

October 3, 1999
6:59 pm
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J.C. It is OK by me. But does the quote illuminate the elementary drives that produces the behaviour that is indicative of what love is not?

It is well known that the Greeks used three words for the three aspects of love as they saw it; namely Eros, Phileo and Agape. Christians seem to favour agape as defining Christian love.

It seems to me that this Greek notion can be expressed as: lust, conditional, and unconditional (possibly conditioning)love.

Some spiritual paths see 'love' as being either body or soul conscious in its origins.

Psychologists would possibly classify love as self-centred or other centred nurturing or combinations of both.

It seems to me that within relationships there is a need to understand what we really mean when we say 'I love you'. It may even go a long way to making such relationships fulfilling and long lasting.

For example, if love in relationships is conditional, then perhaps the terms of the 'transactions' can be better defined and agreed upon. If it is unconditional then perhaps the transgressions are irrelevant. If it is conditioning then we sure as hell better know what is being conditioned and to what end. How unromantic 🙂

Thoughts?

October 4, 1999
11:14 am
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protects, trusts, hopes, and perserveres.

Do you think this has anything to do with "conditional" love? I do. I look for this in romantic love. Am I wrong? Do you think this has to do with false hopes in relationships?

My father has been presurring my mother about not showing much affection. She isn't a cuddly person, he is. He picked up my nephew and he hugged him. He told my mother, "why can't you be like this?" Of course, she isn't a child anymore. Next day she got up and made a special point to give him a hug and he says, "See, this is how it should always be." He feels she doesn't love him enough because she isn't so incredibly affectionate. He once told her that if she loved him she'd cut her hair real short, so she did. It looked so bad, and she was so ashamed of her hair that short. Is this the type of conditional love you are talking about or is there only one kind?

~JC

October 4, 1999
12:34 pm
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bel
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Hi JC,

What you brought up about your father wanting your mother to hug him. Its hard for me to show emoition like that myself, I do make the effort but the reason I don't do that is not that I don't love the person its had to do with my own low self esteem. Im not saying your mother has low self esteem that is jut the reason I don't hug all the time, Im also afraid of rejection or embarrasement. But I think that your mother made the effort to hug your father and also cut her hair to please him shows a deep love for him and unconditional love but at the same time I think she put her feelings in the background to please him. Is that Love? I believe it is. Just my thoughts

Bel

October 4, 1999
6:18 pm
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J.C. Do we want to freely give the 'protection, trust, hope,' and do the 'perservering' without anything in return? Or is it that we want to be 'unconditionally' on the receiving end of these actions?

I believe that all humans hunger for unconditional love; but we settle for the conditional variety instead. If your dad hadn't rewarded your mom for cutting her hair, I wonder how your mom would have felt? She obviously wanted to please him; why? Was it that she wanted 'protection, etc' in return?

Is this conditional love? I guess so.

What about the woman who nurses a husband who is a 'vegetable' until the very end? There is no 'protection, trust etc' for her. Is this unconditional love? I am not sure that there is no 'return' for her.

Now when it comes to an 'unconditionally' loving God, then by definition such a God would definitely seek no returns or conditions whatever for His 'protection, trust, perseverence, etc'. Wouldn't this imply the impossibility of any withholding of any heavenly reward; certainly it would preclude any hellish punishment on God's part? The question of 'salvation' seemingly then becomes totally irrelevant.

Have the Biblical scholars got it wrong? Or is God conditionally loving and wanting a 'return'? What do you think about this important question?

October 4, 1999
8:13 pm
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I think God loves no matter what. He is forgiving. He is Our Father; therefore, our teacher. His lesson in love and all relationships is none other than The Golden Rule: Do unto others what you would have them do unto you.

October 5, 1999
10:30 am
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I got cut short last night...let me continue...

The idea given about going to hell if you sin, or if you fail God's expectations, is widely confused. I don't think of it as God punishing or displaying conditions on his love. It is more like giving boundaries. If a 4 year old stays in the yard where his mother can watch over him, then she can protect him. If he strays into another yard she must go find him, then she can protect him again...she can't while he is gone. If he strays too far to where she can no longer find him, then she can no longer protect him. It is the same with God. He gives us our boundaries with the ten comandments, the beatitudes,etc. If we bypass His rules, then He can no longer protect us from evil. That is why it is important not to fall into the temptations.

Okay, back to the religion thread:)

October 6, 1999
5:43 pm
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J.C. Thanks for your thought provoking and excellent response. You said, "If we bypass His rules, then He can no longer protect us from evil." Does this imply that the God of your understanding is not all powerful; that there is something that He cannot do?

You also said that "... He is forgiving." For me to forgive someone implies that I have first taken offence. I take offence if I believe that my rights have been infringed upon; if I have in some way incurred a loss as a result of someone's actions which I attribute as being motivated by their malevolent intentions. Without having human characteristics, I cannot see how any all knowing God could possibly take offence at anything. God would infinitely understand the distorted psychological underpinnings of even the most malevolent intentions.

Firstly nothing happens unless it is either caused or permitted by an all knowing all powerful God.

Secondly, such a God could not possibly sustain any loss or degradation as a result of any mortal behaviour.

Please don't perceive that you are diminished in any way by the above statements and therefore please don't take offence.

My primary purpose, here, is to logically argue that we have nothing to fear from a truly loving, all powerful, all knowing God.

The really powerful question is: What is the nature of divine love (Agape)? Is it all warm and fuzzy feel good stuff? Or in there pain and suffering involved in it as well? Since emotions are physiological responses of the body as observed by the brain and God is bodiless, how can we have a feeling God? Is this a human projection?

Whilst love may be associated with many different feelings, I suspect that genuine love (Agape) is not a feeling at all. What we commonly call love is a mixture of Phileo and Eros in varying proportions. What do you think?

October 7, 1999
10:39 am
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Okay...God loves no matter what. Whether we stray into the hands of evil or not, he still loves us. The powerlessness of God you desribed from my readings, is not powerless at all. God gives us our freedom to choose. He does not control us. He gives us the choice of whether or not we want to be protected be him or not. God does not use his power to force us away from evil. He leaves it open for us to decide what is right or wrong. It is courteous to ask for forgiveness if we should stray even breifly. God offers forgiveness in response to remind us that He is still their for us and always will be.

In my Ethics class a few years ago, I learned that true happiness can not be determined until the end of the life. Kind of like a ball game: you can't determine who won until the game is over. As far as the true divine love, I believe that acceptance is a big issue. I believe that all people are different and the pain and suffering could easily accompany the process of learning to accept the differences in another person. I'm not sure what agape, phileo, and eros means...I'll get back to you.

~JC

October 7, 1999
7:10 pm
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J.C. You commented that you "..learned that true happiness can not be determined until the end of the life ... " It seems to me that happiness is a state of physical and psychological fulfilment.

Put another way, happiness to me seems to be a state of desirelessness, in which the experience of the joy of living overwhelms any sense of self in isolation from the universe.

However, since most of us are preoccupied with self in some form or another, we suffer. Did we choose to be this way? I don't think so. We are in ignorance of our own psyche and its complex functionings. This ignorance is a severe limitation to any possibility for lasting freedom from fear.

Can an all loving, all knowing and all powerful God dispel this ignorance; therein opening our vision to the myriad alternatives and truly give us the genuine free will to choose to love? Sure He could. But he doesn't. He allows us poor ignorant humans to blindly fumble in this maze of life, stumbling into the thorny bushes, falling into the pit holes. Where is the freedom of the will to choose if the choices are so badly obscured?

Being indoctrinated, sorry - socialised from birth to believe in such a narrow set of Christian beliefs ensures that the maze of ignorance is kept in place. Only a concerted and courageous act of the will can bring about the questioning of most of our constraining beliefs; beliefs which imprison us and stop us from truly loving.

Yet it is the will of God that this ignorance continue; for God either causes or permits all things. To deny this and say that just one thing can occur that is not directly or indirectly caused or permitted by God is to deny that God is all knowing or all powerful.
But what about an all loving God? If God is all loving, then everything that happens to us must be in our best interests; 'wrong' choices included.

But what is this thing called 'love' that encompasses suffering and death? What is its nature?

October 11, 1999
1:17 pm
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I'm not sure that we are supposed to understand God's love, nor his reasoning for not 'permitting' us to understand. I believe that his way of teaching us is to allow us to make mistakes so that we can learn from them...then teach the next generation from our learning. With His word we are to Love, Know, and Speak it. Our 'wrong choices' are not only in our best interests but also in the best interest of our children.

Love, I think is bigger than just a feeling. I think it's a part of you. I'm considering the love I have for my children and my fiancee when I'm writing this. Someone asked on the general board, "can you love someone you can't trust?" The answers given included that you can, but not fully. My answer is, "why not?" When I ask my son if he will clean my room...do I trust him when he says, "I'll do it later?" I don't trust that at all. I love him more than anything, but I can't trust him to do all the right things. Of course that is why I must teach him what's right and wrong. There was a time I couldn't trust my fiancee at all for anything. I honestly didn't believe he cared if I lived or died, but I still loved him dearly...of course I had to take full responsibility for all of my best interests. I couldn't count on him to look out for me at all, but I still loved him. He has grown and matured since then and so have I. Luckily, we did it together. Most people have to separate and live separate lives when they are in the position he and I were in 4 years ago.

When I looked up eros, phileo, and agape...it said that eros is a type of love that only satisfies the physical or erotica such as pornography and prostitution. phileo is the type of love that one would feel for someone that they would treat the same way they want to be treated. Phileo is more emotional and also what most relationships and marriages are based on. If the conditions aren't met, then the relationship usually ends. Agape is the love from God, which can't be fully understood. It is love with no expectations. It is what Matthew talks about when he said, "love thy enemy." I think that the warm fuzzy feelings are stemmed from phileo. However, true love wins over all. I believe that phileo can turn into agape at some point or another...where the love can come to a point where it isn't understood... it's just there.

~JC

October 11, 1999
6:53 pm
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J.C. Wow! That is a good response. I think that the 'warm fuzzies' and the 'agonies' of the codependent version of love is of the Phileo variety. It is of the merchant class of love; I love you, but only if.... Now the Agape variety is just magnificent. Now Eros... Well, I have long believed that the ecstatic collapse of the ego boundaries and loss of self in the heights of a first class orgasm have a deep spiritual connotation. Perhaps, Tantric Yoga has its basis in this.

The Hindi religions have an interesting concept of God which seems to indicate that Agape has three aspects. The three faces of the Hindi concept of God is of God the Creator, God the Sustainer, and God the Destroyer. This concept seems to say that Divine love has creative, sustaining and destructive components.

If we look at nature as an expression of God's love, that is what we see; creation, sustenance and destruction. The little fawn is created by the mother, sustained by the savannah and destroyed by the hungry wild cats. The destruction of the fawn is the sustenance of the wildcats.

It seems that there is a strange interchange in which the forces of Divine Love emerge and evolve with and from each other in a wonderful Dance Of Shiva. It is only when we become fixated and preoccupied with self that we need to create the duality of the good and evil deities; namely God and Satan. Such fixations and preoccupations with self seem to be the cause of our suffering and unhappiness.

It seems to me that limiting our concepts of God's Divine Love only to creation and sustenance that creates the need for our belief in the existence of Hell and after life judgements; perhaps to reconcile the existence of the destructiveness of humanity with the concept of a loving God; thus our need for salvation from eternal punishment.

If we are indestructable expressions of God's love, then perhaps we have nothing to fear but the delusions of fear itself. Maybe all there is, is love; Divine Love; Agape expressed in and encompassing its three eternal forms of creation, sustenance and destruction.

What do you think?

October 12, 1999
5:33 pm
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You are love. God is love. God is in you. So you are love.

"There is no fear in love, for true love casts out fear"

Find the true God/love in yourself and there will be no fear. Never again will you worry about another's love because you already have all the love you 'need'. Give your love to them. You have lots. They may give theirs to you. They may not. But be happy knowing that love grew in you. If they do give love to you, accept it with thanksgiving. You do not need their love, but nobody ever has more love than they need. So, you have enough love, and you have plenty to give away, it's bottomless, but you never have more than you need either, there's always room for more. A paradox perhaps, but what else is new!

October 13, 1999
5:40 pm
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VRJ. Are you including destructive love in your response?

October 13, 1999
8:12 pm
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'love' is not destructive

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