Love is a term used to describe a wide range of emotions, with an emphasis on feeling rather than thinking. It can be romantic love, friendly love, familial love, or even sex. There is even “infatuation,” which may not have any relationship to love.
One of the most intriguing areas of study that attempts to define love is neurology. Neurologists attempt to map the brain function associated with romantic love, passion, attachment, and relationships in all of our species. In humans, two brain regions have been found to be involved in many of our most passionate relationships and behaviors the left anterior superior temporal gyrus (which are involved in visual processing) and the pre-prefrontal cortex (which deal with rational thought).
These neurological pathways may be related to several aspects of romantic love, including physical touching, which activates both of these brain regions. However, it is also possible that these connections are related to non-romantic love and other forms of attachment. Studies have found connections between several behaviors, such as spending time, grooming, hugging, and kissing, and reaching out or touching one another. Interestingly, children seem to be quite content with this level of physical touch, indicating that they are not using this form of affection for either positive or negative purposes. With that said, it is clear that love is more than just physical attraction.
Other researchers believe that passionate feelings may have a different function when compared to romantic relationships. That is, we may be attracted to someone based on their physical beauty but have less interest if they possess a caring personality. Or, a person with caring characteristics may have less interest than a person with physical beauty or a higher status in life. Based on this theory, the less attractive a person is, the more likely they will have less interest in a relationship or forming intimate bonds. The research seems to indicate that passion is not always a good indicator of love when it comes to premarital sex or sexual intimacy.
While many of us believe that love results from an emotional bond that develops over time, there is some evidence that shows that love can have a physiological component as well. In humans as well as other animals, certain brain chemicals occur during experiences that mirror those associated with romantic relationships. Individuals experiencing those feelings have been shown to have an increase in the levels of serotonin and dopamine. Those levels tend to stay high even after the experience is over, suggesting that continued feelings of affection produce long term health benefits. Interestingly, those who are in long-term relationships and do not experience any form of attachment are not displaying the same affectionate behaviors associated with romantic relationships.
While there is no one way to define love, we know that most relationships involve some level of emotional attachment and passionate interactions. When it comes to harmony, there are a number of ways to interpret the meaning of love. Whether you are looking for the ideal relationship or are looking for the spark that will bring you both together to build a new life, the pursuit of that ideal can be fueled by the practice of Attraction Healing.