The concept of love has always been a mystery for both humans and animals. Love encompasses a broad spectrum of optimistic and strong emotional and physical states, from the highest spiritual virtue or religious practice, the most sublime human passion, to the easiest physical pleasure. Love does not have to be defined by what someone else thinks or feels. The depth and quality of love is the true measure of its success or failure.
People can fall into love physically, as in a sexual relationship, or emotionally, as in attachment, or even spiritually, through their feelings for one another. In all cases, people fall into love at first sight, at first expression, at first sight of an individual’s qualities, at first encounter with an atmosphere that inspires feelings, or at the first glimpse of a particular object. The way you fall in love is also quite unique. You may experience your first feeling of love as an overpowering desire, followed by a feeling of desire for more of the same, followed by an intense yearning for it and then, finally, a full-blown longing. Or, you may experience feelings of love as a more subtle motivation to act, as when you are moved by your compassion for another human being.
Love, then, is an interactive process between human beings. It involves two major brain regions: one major brain region that coordinate all of our internal processes; and one major brain region that coordinate all of our external experiences. All of our connections, both with one another and with other people and things in the world, begin in this brain region. One of the primary functions of this region of the brain is to control all of our instinctual behaviors, such as the way in which we interact with one another and how we respond to others, both good and bad. All of our relationships, both romantic love relationships and other relationships that we engage in daily, are coordinated by this single region of the brain.
Passion is very different. In love relationships, passion is usually the result of one partner feeding the other extreme of their passionate love style. This person tends to be so intensely in love with their partner that they can’t wait to share every bit of their passionate energy with that person and vice versa. When this couple has a satisfying relationship, the intimacy they experience with one another is so deep that the two cannot exist without the other one. However, when this relationship starts to falter, the passionate person often withdraws from their partner and lacks the ability to sustain that relationship emotionally.
The results of the preceding comparison are clear: lust and love are two distinctly different emotional states. They have evolved separately, with different results for human beings. In terms of a dyad, one member of a dyad will likely to exhibit more traits of one or the other than the other. In a day, there tends to be a stable desire for love/affection whereas the other is less inclined to exhibit this need. In a relationship, where one member is more likely to exhibit the characteristics of love/affection than the other, this couple will have a higher possibility of experiencing a satisfying relationship.
As mentioned earlier, love and lust have been evolving separately. In our society, however, we seem to have incorporated both aspects of our lives into our everyday marital relationships. As women, it seems natural for us to be attracted to men as well as to be interested in romantic encounters. As a consequence, most of us have been conditioned into believing that we must experience some level of desire for sex before we will consider a relationship as meaningful. The solution to this problem is to be able to allow yourself to experience the feelings of love and/or lust, as well as to engage in a satisfying intimate relationship.