WHAT IS LOVE
William Shakespeare and Gabriel Garcia Marquez , both giants in World Literature, defined love in the context of timeless consistency through their classic novels. Shakespeare wrote “Romeo and Juliet”; Marquez published “Love in time of cholera.”
We could understand love with reference to stories presented by great minds through their works. And one can deduce from creative minds as depicted in art the concept of love. As in art imitating life and vice versa. At times, what is written in the novel is more realistic and within the normal curve than what is obtaining in reality. Although one pardon the author for some exaggerations but when expressed in real terms, the witness at times is dumb founded.
In the novel of Shakespeare, we are taken to youthful adventure on matters related to love. This is a story of teen agers, they whose maturity in understanding and expressing the responsibility of loving is still budding and as yet to ripen. And yet as the protagonists embrace in their final vow, submitting themselves to fate, the love they have shown could shame any adult professing real affection. Shakespeared may have Cleopatra, a middle aged woman, in mind when he wrote his masterpiece.
In ancient Egypt, a queen, Cleopatra whose professed love on one of her warriors, Mark Anthony, after learning, falsely though, that her loved one perished in one battle, became depressed. On his way back to his woman, Mark Anthony was erroneously informed on the death of Cleopatra. Mark Anthony was overwhelmed and could not take the news. He took his own life preferring to meet his Cleopatra in life hereafter. Cleopatra on the other hand when finally saw her beloved Mark Anthony lying lifeless, rushed in her chamber and plucked out an Egyptian cobra and was quickly beaten to death. Shades of art.
In the novel of Nobel Prize for Literature Gabriel Garcia Marquez in his opus “Love in time of cholera” ,we were introduced to a situation where former lovers were separated at an early stage and went separate ways. Both were engrossed in their respective career. The woman founded a family and lived a full life. The man, a lady’s man, had a family one too many and sired a number of offspring and likewise lived a full life. After several years, both former lovers would again meet. This at a time of an epidemic, when their loved ones would perish and as if by stroke of fate, they would survive although they are already in their late 80s. They would still meet, their looks robbed by hazards and pain, their bodies almost wrecked. But having found each other, their hearts never aged at all. Despite their wrinkled and stooped projections, the lovers reignited the same flash of love as they have founded it years before. Shades of art once again.
Love and sex are oftentimes interchanged. Love and lust are always mistakenly spelled as one. Love is never a condition for any relationship. Relationships are more expressed in terms of wealth preservation, political survival, business proposition and every act in relation to convenience.
For the westerners, relationship is basically materialistic. Hence, whenever there is trouble, it is oftentimes settled through partition. There is always divorce at any sign of discord. Love is never permanent and most of the time, it is seen as an adjunct of convenience and nothing more.
For the ancient Orientals, love is never even a concept. It is sex all throughout and the act of affection is seen as a process to procreate.
Modern day lovers are more feeble and listless. They would rather subscribe to norms. Real love exists only in novels, movies, the teleserye kind.
But for the Filipino, it is a different matter no matter how complex civilization has evolved, no matter how advanced technology the world has shaped global consciousness.
Filipinos are static and no stranger to fiction. As a matter of fact, among all races in the world, the Filipino is the most romantic and his concept of love is more proximate to an imaginary kind than any other expression as projected in other cultures. To a Filipino, the foundation of real love culminates in death.