The other day at lunch we went around the table having people offer definitions of “love”. No two definitions were alike. We started by saying that we didn’t mean lust. When you’re in lust–a perfectly valid condition to be in–it’s a matter of one endocrine system calling out to another. Thanks especially to popular songs and to Disney animated features, the two sets of symptoms are often mistaken one for the other. What we wanted to define was long-term love : the sort that happens between a parent and a child, perhaps, or between a mature married couple who have worked through most of the prickly topics.
One definition we liked was : It is the feeling that makes me smile inside when I see either “it” or another person.
Our long-term definition of love runs something like this : It is my wish for the loved person to develop to their full potential, my wish for their well-being; no matter what the cost to me.
We realize that this does not cover the love for an object, a sculpture, a painting, a poem, any inanimate object, or even a puppy or a kitten.
So what is your definition of love?