What are some of the similarities and differences between love and lust? Is our generation able to identify the real difference? Or is there is a even difference in the first place?
Defining both love and lust:
According to the Oxford dictionary, the simplified definition of lust is a strong sexual desire, often to do with physical assets rather than emotional ones.
Whereas, the definition of love is a strong feeling of affection which is of emotions and our emotive attraction to others.
However, we must ask ourselves where these words have come from. The etymology or in other words the root of these words really help us understand whether these words are outdated for our society.
Do we, in fact, have a completely different definition to how it’s applied today?
Love coming from the old English word ‘lufian’ meaning to ‘show love to, delight in or approve’, suggests that there are misconceptions as to what love really means and how we appropriate it.
With lust, the word coming from the 11th century is defined as ‘to wish, to desire’, creates questions as to whether lust is the first step to love or loving as by having ‘desire’ for one, you ‘approve’ of them and eventually will show ‘love’ to.
Or are these words just really non-existent in today’s society and their definitions has been completely perpetuated in a very different way?
Throughout many generations, both love and lust have become part of society. Often, we are unable to differentiate between the two emotions.
Although the lines between love and lust can often be very blurred, the emotions are hugely different feelings and mistaking one for the other can be very dangerous.
Let’s do a thought experiment. Say you have a girlfriend or boyfriend who you find physically attractive.
Now using this example, imagine they lose that physical beauty in a terrible accident, would you still feel the same way about them? Would your ‘love’ for them be the same as before? As intense as before?
If the honest answer is no, then I would suggest that what you’re feeling is not love, it is lust towards your ‘loved’ one.
Different yet still the same:
Perhaps, love and lust are so intertwined because we often define them ourselves, causing a confusion of definitions as the two words have slowly become subject to opinion.
Additionally, an attractive partner can give you a sense of pride and importance; your partner becomes your ‘trophy’, someone who you constantly want to be with and claim.
Perhaps it is that feeling which is then confused with actually loving the person than your physical attraction to them.
Things such as these physical attributes are drawing us to one another. Feelings of pride and being made to feel important. These are lustful desires.
Following this then often comes the emotional attraction of love, after getting to know a person and being introduced to their personality and wellbeing, their emotional side.
Conversely, what we may originally assume to be love could turn out to be lust. Take the ‘love at first sight concept’ for example, can love really be that instant?
Or are we simply just appealed to them? Very rarely are we filled with that instant compassion and dedicated love which is why there are relationships or a phase of dating before marriage or partnership We slowly grow in love through experiences and interests which contain physical and emotionally combined experiences that are good or bad. Often, relationships of our generation are built upon sexual lust.
The majority of relationships cannot surpass 1 year without any sexual activities. One year. Physical connection has been identified by today’s society as the glue in which keeps relationships together. It is becoming more and more requested. It’s almost as if it is the catalyst to successful relationships.
The concept of ‘No Sex before marriage’ is becoming abolished but is it because of lust? Is sex really important or necessary to feel that you are in love with somebody? Or, is it an essential in feeling that you are in love that justifies making ‘love’ with your other half?
This is reflected by the rising percentage of teenage pregnancies and abortions because they are misguided by lust. Being vulnerable young people, they may have been lead into sex thinking it was an act of love, simply because their partner says so.
But those same adolescents, have they really ever loved or been loved? Is it the sexual lust that leads them to this? Sex is often referred to as ‘Making love’ but if there was no love in the first place, then I ask what was it? Or are they in fact both as important?
Lust feels like love until its time to make a sacrifice.
Now love or lust, what are you looking for….?
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