Love - Definitions

Definitions

Part of a series on
Love
Basic aspects
  • Charity
  • Human bonding
  • Biological basis
  • Religious views
  • Philosophy of love
Historically
  • Courtly love
  • Free love
Types of emotion
  • Eroticism
  • Platonic love
  • Familial love
  • Romance
See also
  • Puppy love
  • Limerence
  • Lovesickness
  • Love addiction
  • Human sexuality
  • Unrequited love
  • Valentine's Day
  • Sexual intercourse
  • Interpersonal relationship
  • Falling in love

The word "love" can have a variety of related but distinct meanings in different contexts. Often, other languages use multiple words to express some of the different concepts that English relies mainly on "love" to encapsulate; one example is the plurality of Greek words for "love." Cultural differences in conceptualizing love thus make it doubly difficult to establish any universal definition.

Although the nature or essence of love is a subject of frequent debate, different aspects of the word can be clarified by determining what isn't love. As a general expression of positive sentiment (a stronger form of like), love is commonly contrasted with hate (or neutral apathy); as a less sexual and more emotionally intimate form of romantic attachment, love is commonly contrasted with lust; and as an interpersonal relationship with romantic overtones, love is sometimes contrasted with friendship, although the word love is often applied to close friendships.

When discussed in the abstract, love usually refers to interpersonal love, an experience felt by a person for another person. Love often involves caring for or identifying with a person or thing (cf. vulnerability and care theory of love), including oneself (cf. narcissism). In addition to cross-cultural differences in understanding love, ideas about love have also changed greatly over time. Some historians date modern conceptions of romantic love to courtly Europe during or after the Middle Ages, although the prior existence of romantic attachments is attested by ancient love poetry.

Because of the complex and abstract nature of love, discourse on love is commonly reduced to a thought-terminating cliché, and there are a number of common proverbs regarding love, from Virgil's "Love conquers all" to The Beatles' "All You Need Is Love". St. Thomas Aquinas, following Aristotle, defines love as "to will the good of another." Bertrand Russell describes love as a condition of "absolute value," as opposed to relative value. Philosopher Gottfried Leibniz said that love is "to be delighted by the happiness of another." Biologist Jeremy Griffith defines love as "unconditional selflessness".

Love is sometimes referred to as being the "international language", overriding cultural and linguistic divisions.

Read more about this topic:  Love

Other articles related to "definition, definitions":

Theoretical Definition
... A theoretical (or conceptual) definition gives the meaning of a word in terms of the theories of a specific discipline ... This type of definition assumes both knowledge and acceptance of the theories that it depends on ... An example of a theoretical definition is that of "Heat" in physics, which actually puts forth an entire theory of heat (involving accelerating molecules, etc.) ...
Volcanic Seven Summits - Definitions - South America
... Although topographic maps of the Chile and Argentina border region which contains the highest peaks are of notoriously poor accuracy, with elevation errors exceeding 100 metres (330 ft) in many cases, the current consensus based on the most recent measurements places Ojos del Salado as the 2nd highest peak and highest volcano in South America, significantly higher than Monte Pissis. ...
Scientology Beliefs And Practices - Scriptures and Practices - Terminology
... law” the need to have precise terminology that cannot be confused with other words or definitions ... He gave emphasis on avoidance of words that have many definitions and compared the language of Scientology with the language of Math and other precise doctrines ... a heavy emphasis on understanding word definitions ...
Language Of Mathematics - Alternative Views
... Some definitions of language, such as early versions of Charles Hockett's "design features" definition, emphasize the spoken nature of language ... Mathematics would not qualify as a language under these definitions, as it is primarily a written form of communication (to see why, try reading Maxwell's equations out ... However, these definitions would also disqualify sign languages, which are now recognized as languages in their own right, independent of spoken language ...
Theoretical Definition - Examples
... Conceptual definition Operational definition Weight a measurement of gravitational force acting on an object a result of measurement of an object on a Newton spring scale ... The definitions of substances as various configurations of atoms are theoretical definitions, as are definitions of colors as specific wavelengths of reflected light ... In such cases one definition of a term is unlikely to contradict another definition based on a different theory ...

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