People say I don’t know what love is like they do. I’m not sure our culture knows what love is. Hallmark cards, Disney movies, diamonds, that’s what love is? I think most conceptions of love are idealizations. Like the ideal gas law, PV=nKT, we make assumptions until the world is simple enough that we can understand it. The ideal gas law assumes (1) collisions on walls are perfectly elastic (2) molecules do not collide. Under those two assumptions, we can understand thermodynamics. Our idealization also makes thermodynamics beautiful and elegant. So we idealize to seek truth and beauty. Sounds like love to me. Any concept is only real within our minds. Once it leaves to live in the real world, it becomes an idealization. Mathematics is pure ideas, it is pure truth. Once math tries to model the physical universe it becomes an idealization. We each have our own idealized version of what love is and what love should be. For me it is an extension of the self. Someone you love, something you love is something that is a natural part of you. What you love is what you are or what you aspire to be. You get as close to it as possible, you admire it, learn from it, yearn for intimacy. Love seems like such a natural concept, why maroon yourself on an island of flesh? The real world complicates this idea. Our bodies limit us, constrain us with hormones. Self interested cultural gatekeepers bombard you with commercialistic propaganda from all angles. You lie to yourself, others lie to you. The truth is harsh and painful, you hide it away but forget where you left it. All you can remember is that you live in a harsh world and must do what you have to do to survive. Love becomes a function of money and geography. You forget who you are so you try to carve a new self out of money and power. Money and power for safety, but the world is Hobbesian. You have to do terrible things just for basic safety. Everything becomes zero sum. Evolution culturally appropriates love to spread genes willing to do the dirty things necessary to thrive in this world. I’m sure I’m just bitter from all the love I’ve lost. There’s that point in your life when you realize you’ve lost too much. Truth and love are the only things that give me meaning and drive. I’m doing alright on the truth front, physics and mathematics are sort of my thing. I consider what I would have had to done to earn love. Who would I have to be to earn that love? Was it just a quantum fluctuation and butterfly effect that led her to love him and not me? There may be avenues for love in the future but I’ve lost too much. Each love is completely unique and irreplaceable When you love someone, every word they say is translated by your heart. Only so many people you love can tell you that you aren’t worthy of love before you stop loving yourself. When people tell me that they love me, I don’t believe them. When people say nice things to me I assume they are wrong or just being nice. I wouldn’t want to be part of any club that would have me, in the words of Groucho Marx. The other side is the insults. For some reason, insults and condemnations strongly resonate in me as if I knew they were true all along. I am aware that filtering negative and positive interactions from the world in such a way is toxic. At this point it is such a deep part of my individuality I’m not sure how to fight it.