An Essay In Love ❤
[AKA F*ck me, I’m Wolverine]
“You know Sartre, well you may disagree…”
[AKA] To “Love” Without Knowledge of “Self”, “Other” and What “Love” Is, Is Merely a Long Running Sham, a Performance of Self Delusion: An Expression of Hatred of the Self coupled with a Fear of Rejection and a Fear of Self Exploration for the Dimwittedly Destined to be Emotionally Bereaved, Broken Hearted and Eternally Empty Wherever Any Truth of Connection is to be Conscientiously Considered (AKA, F*ck me, I’m Wolverine: A collection of short essays on love and philosophy JR) [7thEd.]
WAS it Dostoyevsky who said “Love in action is a harsh and dreadful thing compared to the love of the dream”?
Ah, but did not Goethe suggest that love is an ideal thing, where as relationships where a real thing and those who confuse the real with the ideal will never go unpunished?
Yes. And it is the same point.
Yet, was it not Huxley who said that to go on and on with just one partner is, indeed, such very bad behaviour?
No. Alright not really with that one. That was more from the Brave New World. Still: two out of three ain’t bad.
And at least I didn’t lead with Tolstoy’s far more direct “love does not exist” end quote.
I am the first to admit that my views on intimacy are unorthodox, if rational. Alright perhaps not the first, but looking around at what people are trying to pass off as love: admit it I must.
Camus points out that since death is inevitable, life is meaningless. I think you need to at least start here with this possibility or you never get started with any possibilities.
It has been kind of interesting though (if mildly disembowelling*) that all of my heroes throughout history have ended up either with their clothes suicide stained or on the inside wall of mental institutions. Often both. And often them still in their clothes when said laundry arrived at either destination. I mean obviously.
It is entirely plausible that someone made a mistake when I was still in my bottle, for in my case it is true what they say: I came out of the bottle “without love for any of the state sports” and with a penchant for being “by myself –alone“.
But many shared my view on the matters of true love and how to find it. Many also floundered to find an equal wit with a will of force to forgo philandering precepts of the Christian variety. To fight the pretence of confused connection that people repugnantly refer to as “love” (ambiguously like the automata they are).
Rare to find a mind who, by contrast, openly works with honesty in order to actually claim the prize the others seem all too happy to claim they also seek, though without actually doing any seeking.
As the poet Abelard pointed out: the worst offenders are the females of the species. Referring to the:
“I love you, I just met you but I will fill in the blanks despite the fact I can’t possibly really “love” you in any meaningful sense at all, being I don’t know you”.
Although men are not so far behind on this measure. He ultimately welcomed castration, so I am comforted by the thought there is always that.
When do you know someone? That is a difficult question to be sure. But I’d be willing to argue a far lesser, but quite relevant, riddle is when do you NOT know someone. The answer? Pretty much the rest of the time. Can you love someone you don’t know? What are you stupid, what does that mean I…i’ll check but, hang on let me just get the DSM *riffles through bag*… oh here it is! Yes, yes you can: It’s in the section on bizarre and non-bizarre delusions. I stand corrected.
Do I? The way you people carry on.
For what can “love” mean in this setting? Only childish and emotionally hollow fantasy. And what lover worth their salt would be anything but completely insulted in such a situation?
At the very least, they can’t love YOU: it doesn’t matter what they say or what mating rituals they perform, that much is certain. Whatever our definition of “youness” turns out to be, I have never seen any version of it gleaned in an instant in any meaningful sense.
And even if was it was, AND completely accurately: it would take years to confirm that premise!
In most of these relationships: there is no YOU in them, for the other of either party.
And as a matter of pure reason I don’t see how anyone can argue there can be. What there is, however, is an inbred cultural agreement to pretend from the get go with whomever or till forever: whatever the case may be in your particular case.
SEX SEX SEX: The folly of Pseudo-Love and why Through Self Un-fulfilment, Infidelity and Suicide(and/or)Homicide it Will Ruin Your Life
From here is just depends on prowess of mind.
Power of self honesty: ie if you want to acknowledge, at least to yourself, that such dynamics are a pretend game most of which will end and that you already believe this whole heartedly OR if you’d prefer to transmute that into self deception, poor mental/physical health and projected rage at the loss of any hope for real love while you run such a fraudulent system so completely blindly, you can.
It is up to you of course, but the realities of infidelity and the fact that there simply has to be a long list of assumptions, favourable extrapolations and just down right false information you have inaptly applied to this talking manikin, will remain no matter what you choose.
Am I the only one who thinks it would be far more romantic to call “love at first sight”; “Opportunity with lust inspired by a character who meets the criteria from past conditioning for me to rate their social status and appearance as adequate enough that I can fill in the blanks for all other criteria until further notice”?
Just me huh? Weird. Yes, truth is rarely “romantic” per se because romance is a lie by definition: a clumsy term for dominance and control over one another (originally targeting women) with Church and Hallmarkian mandate.
This maybe cliché, but if you are looking for companionship with another “person”: then there is no “age”. And if you are serious in comparing notes while sharing in exploring life: there is no single classical “commitment” to a partner. Rather, I would go as far as to say if you want love and to be loved: then there can not be these things.
Indeed, philosophers often tend to have massive age gaps (honestly too many to go into, usually the partner the junior to the philosopher and up to 40 years difference is not uncommon) and open relationships with a ‘primary’ designation of love for their base companion.
Coincidentally, nearly all of my relationships have been a variety of this-ish (I’m usually a couple of years older and open-ish – occasionally “cheating”, sure, but only when they were not open enough for real love…what you gonna do with your only life? Stick your head in the sand and lie to yourself? Usually.
Or you can live. But then you have no choice but to lie to them do you? They leave you none.
The point is this is organic, in my case there is self honesty too, but the rest does not just apply to my case. Before I knew anything about the love life of the lovers of wisdom that I love i was aware of this (self evident) truth.
Rousseau said “Man is born free, yet everywhere he is in chains”. He applied this to committed relationships adding on the falseness of what people call love: “if people saw what ‘was’ in what they claim to love rather then what they ‘want’ to see: there would be no more love in the world”!
I may not go quite that far, but certainly what passes for love in the world would largely be extinct. He also liked to be spanked due to conditioning from his maid disciplining him when he was a child. Which is also fair enough.
He also liked to hide in the odd dark ally and leap out at passersby’s with his ye olde wang out. Which is where I leave him. But it’s where I’ll leave you too if you don’t start waking up to yourselves: in the same ally with Rousseau on flashing night. And no spanking for you either. You don’t have to be a black pepper corn, I’m not saying that vanilla features, not exactly. But if you can’t handle the basics you don’t get the perks. Now come on that’s fair.
To add another to my team, Thoreau was quoted questioning just how many partnerships would ever have taken place if common sense had been consulted. And I can wonder about a few instantly. Count how many immediately come to mind for you?
So before you go calling Hallmark directly to report me; it’s worth noting it is not just me anymore.
Although I haven’t won my Nobel prize (yet), and am not evil nor rich enough to even be considered for the prize in “Peace”: this is a view shared by philosopher Laureate Bertrand Russel for example. (Plus Sartre turned his down).
Russel also made the arguably astute observation that there was far more unwanted sex in married life then in the life of a prostitute. And that closed relationships were especially destructive to creative people. Which they are. That’s opinion, agreed. And I am creative people.
But I think it can be argued soundly that the more: go to work; what’s a book; what time’s the game; question nothing; what would my parents think; what’s on TV; this is what you are suppose to do; its what everyone else does;… that you are, the less damaging being in a seething, loveless, self-deluded and dishonest relationship is to your psyche. That’s just common sense.
I am not saying no wise man can ever fall in love (Diogenes) but I would be wiling to add until you can learn to be alone you can not love.
Althusser “accidentally” strangled his wife, who he was cheating on anyway. This is the kind of thing that happens when oppression is forced on a person from all sides (particularly the front of the throat in this case).
But from homicide to infidelity: this is the reality. People prefer to pretend rather than admit it. And there is no love as a result. People can’t have love because they don’t ask for it. And frankly if you can’t even ask honestly for it, you really don’t deserve it. And you really won’t get it either.
It’s just a pity this dogmatic approach to psedo-love happens to ruin the rest of your life as well.
The Famous Case of Simone and Sartre… well you may disagree…”
SARTRE, well you may disagree, said on beauty that there were indeed ugly, unattractive people in the world: he merely preferred the attractive ones. I, on the other hand, oft refrain from calling anything ugly but behaviour. But I didn’t take so much mescaline one time too many that I ended up getting followed to class by four crabs in my sober waking life (What? They were quiet while he was teaching). So, horses for courses, I say. (incidentally, a lot of amphetamine went into Being and Nothingness as well…or was it… well very likely it was all of them I suppose).
And on the rest: we’re solid.
His open (and delightfully cunning) relationship with philosopher Simone de Beauvoir is the stuff of legend. Often sleeping with the same boys and girls not just together but with shared knowledge apart (the target thinking themselves the cunning one for sleeping with both: yet they had conspired to make it happen).
One doesn’t have to appreciate the cunning to appreciate the sharing.
And when asked how he balanced all his relationships what was Sartres answer: “I lie”. When asked if he even lied to Simone he said “ESPECIALLY Simone!”. But he may have been joking, he did joke. If not I can not follow him there when she was his primary. But perhaps she showed herself unworthy and left him no choice. We’ll never know.
As a boy Friday of Simone, famous writer Nelson Algren once wrote “Pimps are more honest than philosophers!” regarding her relationship with Sartre. But I would argue that is because he was not a philosopher, he could not love Simone: he had to OWN her.
So he deserved nothing and got nothing. Though by all accounts she did have love for him, the fact he could even approach the worlds leading feminist with such an idea as marriage shows quite clearly that, despite what he thought he felt, he could not AND did not love her. He couldn’t. He obviously couldn’t even see her.
Are Hot People Just Dumber? Compatriots of Love
As I said, there are many many people that don’t (in reality) conform to the relationship ideals that they tell themselves they do. And that’s not even including your relationship. Which we probably should.
But the philosophers. There are just so many great stories. As I’ve stated, they literally all had open relationships. Engels … actually, skip the list: just assume “all” unless otherwise specified.
I’ll run through a few favourites.
Tolstoy waited till his wedding day to reveal at the alter his homoerotic leanings, affairs and prostitutes to his bride to be: in the form of a detailed diary. She cried. Women, pffft. That’s why you’ve got to lie to them.
Socrates of course slept with many young boys, as was the custom. Being one of my hero’s he needs a quote:
“Marry if you want. If you get a good wife you may even be happy. If you get a bad wife; you become a philosopher”.
So great. 300 BC and already knew it was a terrible Idea. Too bad Christianity would be there in just 7 short century’s (Yeah, that’s right about half a MILLENNIA after Christ walked the earth, people decided “you know who made sense: that Jesus fellow. I took a while to come around but… you know what, let’s go with it after all. Build the Vatican, lets really get behind this thing, spearhead the whole operation right here in Rome…”).
Also bear in mind, re Socrates, he would probably still have been able to sleep with boys throughout his marriage to Xanthippe. Also, she was apparently an unholy cow. So much so her name was used for “shrew” in Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew”. This was actually because of her real life personality and its renown. So get a bad wife, become a philosopher, get a f*cking shrew and you end up Socrates.
As they say: behind every great man … is a f*ck awful nagging troll that keeps the husband from wanting to go home so badly that he actually ends up getting more work done. Is that sexiest? I can never tell. The comment applies to Socrates alone here. So calm down.
Aristotle: late night university debates ending in naked wrestling and hot oil rub before home to the wife. He also said woman where “monstrosities” barely able to be considered tamed beasts. Nuff said.
And I love how Seneca (Younger) ranted in effect “How can anyone feel ashamed of adultery anymore, when the morality of society has completely crumbled…I challenge you to even find a woman who will actually stay with the one man!”. This was in the 4th century BC. Talk about your downward spirals.
Beecher: “Marriage is the grave of love”. Cute huh? And “marriage” can really be taken to mean “relationship” by today’s standards.
Schopenhauer liked a women with big titties: to better nurture his children so their intellect wouldn’t suffer from malnourishment. I like this fact because I bet that’s where all the dudes who like big titties get it from. They want to suck on their mothers’. That’s all it is. Its obvious once you say it, but every time some jock starts raving on and on about a chick’s rack just remember this and see if you don’t smile.
Sartre once told a girl he stood up he got lost in a castle. Gone are the days where that excuse would hold up you’d think. That being said, this is the 20th century when it worked last so, hey, give it a whirl. “Yeah, I’m running late…oh come on honey you know what castles are like in LA at this time of night… I took one wrong corridor now I gotta go all the back to the drawbridge and back around past the moat…main or secondary porticullis…I gotta go, gotta concentrate…you too…Xxx”
With the same directness I have always used, Ayn Rand said “without the ‘I’ there is no I love you”. And reflecting on the lack of ‘I’s ’is always a melancholy invoking past time. (Also open relationships. I did say assume but she’s that little left field so just being clear).
Another one of my boy’s, Plato: “Love is a serious mental disease”. To the point. Republic goes a lot further than that, of course.
Titus Lucretius said sex was ONLY ethically sound so long as love was not involved.
Locke, one of my favourites, said simply that love is the exemplary in humankinds power to utterly self deceive. He applied this to life long marriage in particular and this is 1600’s. Some people just got it.
Kierkegaard is great: every time he gets a crush on someone he gets really depressed. He’s kinda hot too. ❤
Kant saw marriage as a sex contract, kinda supporting Russel with the more “wanted sex” in prostitution then in marriage, if you ask me. Which your eyes have, so there the eyes have it.
Hume, like most philosophers, had his choice of mates which he likened to “getting to choose your cell in a prison.”
Hegal: “Men-Woman; Animal-Plant”. Nuff said.
Descartes had a fetish for cross-eyed women. That’s just fun.
Comte ended up crouching in the shadows behind doors like an animal unable to teach after 2 years marriage. Thanks for sociology, positivism and secular giving though (between knife throws).
There are just too many.
Nietzche: “Oh women; they make the high’s higher and the lows … both lower and more frequent”. He only had sex on doctor’s orders by some accounts, so wasteful was courtship. I mention this only because he went mad and died from syphilis some claim. If that is true, there is a bitter irony there. Or some very well organised doctors drumming up long-term business.
He also expressed a classic adage regarding the company he likes to keep, an adage that people don’t like, but I have found is true: “I prefer plain girls…all plain girls compensate by cultivating their mind”.
That is not to say classically attractive people are simply less intelligent, but for the most part however it is harder to work with them for they will take the fake praise and easy attention of any passerby if an engagement becomes too emotionally complex or concepts gain too much depth. And if they go too many years without being challenged then, yes, they become less bright and begin to call unintelligent people intelligent to compensate.
By the same token, not every plain individual picks up a book or reflects on life. Not by a long shot.
But since extreme symmetry is an outlier it is more reliable to state that attractive people are far more likely to be stupid then any other person drawn at random. Hey, I don’t make the rules: it’s a pure observation of numbers. The near certain impact of social normative reactions with kid glove treatment and false praise attractive people get treated with will have an impact. And not for the better on this marker, of course, how could it. They get praise for nothing so think “man, I should keep this up!”. Which they do. It’s praise for doing nothing and so they are conditioned to do more of the same.
It’s like saying people are more likely to hit a toad with a golf club then a kitten or a human baby: it’s just a fact of symmetry circuits to protect our young overgeneralizing. Toad, kitten, baby…golf club…ethically is there a difference? Not to me.
If love is to have any meaning
If love is to have any meaning at all, it has to be an honest shared exploring of the world. Not a commonplace mirror image facade of what the neighbours are doing, taught at birth, and then absurdly applied as a grotesque abstract to whoever you happen to be dating at any given time. How disgusting.
No wonder so many philosophers lament getting married as their only real regret on their deathbed. Or say their master piece would have been completed years earlier but for the insane drama people were intent on bringing into, what should be and could have been, a simple rational, yet still entirely passionate but just not insane, exchange of sharing most aptly described as true love.
And it is all too easy to imagine as completely true, isn’t it? Because it is. It all is. Scream, start screaming now my God this is your life.
Without the “I” and the “you” in “I love you”; what you are really saying is “I am weak in will and thought and afraid to stand alone, so let me waste your resources with my clingy needs that I am unaware of due to self reflective deficits, let my insecurity force upon you what I have been taught relationships are suppose to be, let me react to you unthinkingly as a general rule, and let me try and use sex to manipulate you (if you are lucky) and then cheat on you anyway with a friend you think loyal, at a time when we both agree we are the happiest we’ve ever been. Sorry honey, I just happened =D.Bro, I was drunk, she’s a slut you deserve better…what have you. If you find out at all XD”
Luckily most people will be willing to say this straight back to you. And they’ll mean it too. Congratulations?
It was of course Huxley’s savages who favoured monogamy and could be not be taught the civility of promiscuity. That is the path straight to self flagellation, murder and suicide.
The point here though, when all is said and done, is only that it is completely bizarre that there should be a base print for any couple so commonly counterfeited. We are similar creatures, but not on traits that support unions like this. As any union will bear out.
But for those who managed to read this far and are aghast, one last quote before I give you the chance to reflect on why you are emotionally reactive at all (I’m kidding: there is no reflection coming I know that. We both do…don’t we?). [NB If you really did read this far, you probably are one of the good guys <3]
In any event, I leave you with a paraphrase of Linda’s lament with the savages, reproduced here with only an echoing somber tone:
“When a child asks you how a helicopter works or who made the world…when you are a Beta…what are you to answer?”
How about I love you.
First published Jay J. Raphael (2012) J Chron Letters and Science, Issue 8 (2).
Jay J. Raphael is a philosophical lover from way back.
“I hate babies and puppies and kittens. Con artists that they are. Just as I recoil when I am attracted to someone by looks. That being said, I have only dated particularly beautiful people. But by accident. And the hotter they are the more willing they have been to work harder towards something worthwhile. I’ve been lucky in patches. Because it is dangerous being attractive, both for those who know it and those who don’t. A great danger in being dumb, slowed in growth by easy distraction and false praise by completely vacant others.”
“I tell people when they look hot. But it is always a complete con, much like their face.”
“A dept placement of cues or hits from my past associations engender from me, more completely, genuine applause. As so they should: since there is thought in fashion. There is no thought in a symmetrical face.”
“I like adequate wit framed in Goth Emo cues, big eyes, piercings, flat stomach with a penchant for true loyalty through nonstandard practice.” [I may want to know this one day?]
“To the contrary, why it isn’t the norm has probably plagued every thinker between here and …over there, but like WAY over there…”
“There is a Malthusian irony that boys with boys use far more condoms then boys with girls in the common era.”
“and the ever empty aeon of the authentic existential aether finds no home here”