Love is an integral part of our daily vocabulary, yet the question “What is love?” is met with puzzled looks.
What is this romantic love?
Love has been overly romanticized. Some people describe love as an incomprehensible feeling that they experience, in the presence/absence of someone out of deep affection for them. Some believe in love at first sight. Others believe that people fall in love gradually. Yet others believe in one true love. The effects of over romanticization of love has proved to be catastrophic.
What makes love sacred?
Love comprises of attraction, care and friendship. The world has attributed a remarkable quality to it, in order to reinforce cultural beliefs. Love is overrated. In India, the idea of eternal love stems from Hinduism, that is inherently patriarchal and strives to keep the status quo. Self introspection will help us discover that we have been unconsciously absorbing misogynistic elements from books and movies that are by-products of patriarchal institutions. This has manipulated our worldview.
Is love eternal?
The function of elevating love to a mystical pedestal is to keep patriarchy in check. What is the need for the interference of the state/society in an individual’s private life? Monogamy is a tool to keep the status quo intact. If you fall in love with like-minded people gradually, then it is an unfortunate truth that people change. When opinions and beliefs of people change with time, how can love and compatibility be constant? If it is love at first sight, then it is bound to change with age. So love is prone to change. One true love is a myth and love is blown out of proportion.
“If we think deeply, we will realize that love lacks substance, reality and certainness; and the person who blows it out of proportion is foolish by nature”
– Periyar; “Why were women enslaved?”