Image Artwork by Gwen A.P.
Love. Songs have been written about it, stories have been written about it, movies have been made about it. It seems that wherever we go, no matter where we come from, ‘love’ is always a hot topic.
I remember hearing a story about a counsellor that was sent to help refugees. She was nervous before she went and wondered how she could really help people who had fled their homes and left everything behind.
When she started talking to the people in the refugee camp she was amazed that many of their problems and issues were about relationship struggles, falling in love and being in love.
It also seems that no matter how educated, successful, enlightened, and balanced we are, love still has the ability to trip us up and cause us to question everything.
How could one emotion be so powerful?
The word ‘Love’ is actually used to describe a combination of different emotions. For example, we can love our family, but we can also love a friend, ourselves and the morning sunrise.
Even though we use “love” to define what we feel in these situations, the emotions we feel in each of these can be very different.
While feelings of love definitely have a common thread, perhaps the fact that we use the word “love” to describe all of these different feelings is why so many of us are confused about what love really means.
Many of us grow up believing that romantic love is the ultimate type of love. We are told that this type of love offers a feeling of completion, we are told that our lives will always be empty unless we have this type of love.
We yearn for this type of love, we search for this type of love, but do we really understand what we are looking for?
The ancient Greeks actually had 7 words to describe love, but it seems that over the years these words have been lost from the English language.
By understanding the different types of love, perhaps it will help you to know what you are really searching for, or what you are really expecting when it comes to love.
Here are the 7 Types of Love –
1. Eros: is used to describe sexual love or feeling a sexual attraction towards another person. It is a purely physical type of love. On an energetic level, Eros love flows from the Root and Sacral Chakras. The Root Chakra energy has a very primal feel to it, whereas the Sacral Chakra is involved with bringing pleasure and passion. This type of love can vary in intensity and can also fade away, which is why relationships built only on this type of love tend not to last.
2. Philia: is used to describe the love you have for your friends and family. It is a feeling of companionship or friendship. Having feelings of Eros and Philia in a romantic relationship often indicates a high chance of longevity, however this is also dependent on whether the individuals have also discovered Philautia (see below). On an energetic level, Philia comes from the Heart Chakra, as it is based on mutual feelings of trust, respect and admiration.
3. Storge: is used to describe the love between parents and children. This love is based on dependency and a familiar connection. According to Greek philosophers, many adults seek Storge type love in their romantic relationships and expect this level of dependency and attachment, however this can often lead to complications. On an energetic level, when expressed between a parent and child, this love energy comes straight from the Heart Chakra and Crown Chakra. It is a pure love that is very unconditional. When this type of love is expected in romantic relationships, the flow of energy changes and it becomes very ego driven. Often romantic relationships that are built on Storge love are very codependent and can become toxic very quickly.
4. Agape: is used to describe universal love. It is the love we feel for one another, the planet and the universe/God. Agape is very similar to how we would describe unconditional love, which is the life force of the Universe. On an energetic level, Agape flows from all the Chakras, representing equality and balance. We feel Agape love through meditation, spending time in nature and strengthening our spiritual connection.
5. Ludus: is used to describe playful, uncommitted love. It includes flirting, seducing or having sexual experiences without any feelings of commitment or attachment. Ludus is more about the ‘experience’ than the attraction, which is why it is different to Eros. On an energetic level, Ludus comes from the Sacral Chakra, which is all about seeking pleasure and having fun.
6. Pragma: is used to describe practical love that is based on personal qualities, shared goals and duty. Pragma love can include arranged marriages, but many relationships that start off with Eros or Storge can turn into Pragma type love as well. On an energetic level, this type of love flows from the Root and Heart Chakras. This type of love is about survival together and working towards common goals, with the feeling of respect and admiration for each other.
7. Philautia: is used to describe self-love and self-worth. It is the love that we need to have in order to feel like we belong and have purpose in life. On an energetic level, this type of love flows from the Heart Chakra and Third Eye Chakra. We need to love and believe in ourselves in order to open up to our purpose and to our intuition.
Having 7 different ways to define love may make things seem more complicated, but in many ways, that is the nature of love as we know it.
Love itself is not complicated, it is all the other stuff that comes a long with it that can cause things to become cloudy.
While there are many ways to define love, and many types of love to feel and experience, at the end of the day all humans long for love. We are made of love and we thrive on love, which is why so many of us will risk everything in search of it.
Love comes in many ways and many forms so if you are searching for love, be sure you know what type of love you are really looking for.
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