Up@dawn 2.0

Monday, May 4, 2015

Group 2 Section 8 Final Blog Post: Alyssa Degenhardt

The last type of love that I will discuss is called Philautia:

"The Greek's sixth variety of love was philautia or self-love. And the clever Greeks realized there were two types. One was an unhealthy variety associated with narcissism, where you became self-obsessed and focused on personal fame and fortune. A healthier version enhanced your wider capacity to love.

The idea was that if you like yourself and feel secure in yourself, you will have plenty of love to give others (as is reflected in the Buddhist-inspired concept of "self-compassion"). Or, as Aristotle put it, "All friendly feelings for others are an extension of a man's feelings for himself."
The ancient Greeks found diverse kinds of love in relationships with a wide range of people—friends, family, spouses, strangers, and even themselves. This contrasts with our typical focus on a single romantic relationship, where we hope to find all the different loves wrapped into a single person or soul mate. The message from the Greeks is to nurture the varieties of love and tap into its many sources. Don't just seek eros, but cultivate philia by spending more time with old friends, or develop ludus by dancing the night away.
Moreover, we should abandon our obsession with perfection. Don't expect your partner to offer you all the varieties of love, all of the time (with the danger that you may toss aside a partner who fails to live up to your desires). Recognize that a relationship may begin with plenty of erosand ludus, then evolve toward embodying more pragma or agape.
The diverse Greek system of loves can also provide consolation. By mapping out the extent to which all six loves are present in your life, you might discover you've got a lot more love than you had ever imagined—even if you feel an absence of a physical lover.
It's time we introduced the six varieties of Greek love into our everyday way of speaking and thinking. If the art of coffee deserves its own sophisticated vocabulary, then why not the art of love?"
- http://www.yesmagazine.org/happiness/the-ancient-greeks-6-words-for-love-and-why-knowing-them-can-change-your-life

1 comment:

  1. That non-narcissistic form of self-love is really an expansion of one's self-concept, isn't it? To love is to become a larger person.

    What about those philosophers, Buddhists and Humeans and others, who deny the substantial reality of the self? I think they become larger through love as well. Some of this is semantics, but a lot of it is just the ancient wisdom of finding something larger in life to identify with than the mere travails of a single skin-bounded organism whose life in any case is over in a flash of cosmic time.

    My daughter the film student announced in her latest mini-review that love is her favorite topic. I'll have to show her your post, and ask her if she's read Plato's Symposium.