I am trying best to figure out how to encapsulate what I have learned about my most recent relationship. It falls under a lack of knowledge of the Four Loves. The Greeks had at least four different words for love. The first and probably the most demeaning is storge. Generally it’s the love between people of dissimilar power structures: parents-children; kings-subjects; and so forth. Please note, I said generally. All these words and concepts are 2,000 or more years old and subject to cultural and language shift and variation. The next one up is filia; also know as a brotherly love. It’s the love between friends. Next up is eros; yep, it’s sex. It’s erotic, sexual love. It’s physical. Finally, we have agape. Agape is an unconditional love. Agape is mentioned in the Christian New Testament as the highest form of love that can really be achieved. With agape there is no need for another person to love another person back, or vice versa. With agape, it is possible for a person to give up one’s life so that another may live. There is no ‘you scratch my back and I’ll scratch your back’ sort of thing with agape. That sort of stuff happens all the time in the other forms of love.
I made the mistake of dealing with someone who had no idea that I was expressing ‘agape’ when I expressed love for this person. All I did was blow this person’s paradigm. I totally shifted this person’s view of friendship dynamics. Friends don’t love in this person’s view. Of course, that is a totally wrong view. I love all my friends; otherwise they wouldn’t be my friends (that’s why I have only about three of them-ha, ha, ha).
I guess this also points to something tragic that happens to people in life. They have no experience of an unconditional love. No experience of a person telling them that they love them and want absolutely nothing in return. How does a person who has been used for storge and eros all their life respond to an act of agape?
With anger and hostility and mistrust and the ending of a friendship. I hope I planted seeds that can perhaps be reflected upon later. This person has great exterior and more importantly an interior spiritual and mental beauty few saw. I saw it because for a short time this person opened up to me and revealed the complexity of thought and character that laid within the wonderful castle of her mind and heart. However, when a person does open up one’s mind to a person like me who has troved the pits of darkness and can spot the hurt and pain one tries to hide within in dungeons dark and deep, it is not rocket science that reveals the grief that needs to be released to the light of a glorious day.
For me, I cannot go back. I can only go forward. I have my own demons and angels with whom to wrestle. However, I am most grateful to this person. This person was there when after seven years of feeling absolutely nothing, of being emotionally numb, the bright face that I saw at the end of my darkness was hers. The hand that pulled me out of the well that I was imprisoned was hers.
Unfortunately, feeling emotion after seven years is much like Data from Star Trek getting his emotion chip for the first time. All of them, at the same time, all over the place. Wow, and How! It hurts and it’s painful; but I feel and it feels good to love and to feel happy and sad and to feel my heart beating with passion once again. It’s great to feel as if I am once again running like a wolf after a deer in a great hunt. Yea, but I think I’ll be content when it peters out and I’ll be soft and comfortable in my recliner watching cartoons with my kitten running all over me.