Rather than go into the long list of excuses (most of them revolving around me being lazy, but not the only reason), I will get into something new.

There is this interesting article over at the Huffingtonpost.com which looks at neural research being done on love. The thesis here is that “…love mostly can be understood through brain images, hormones and genetics.” I had to stop there. Can love be “understood” in this way? I mean, sure, ok… looking at the definition of understand, then one can, maybe say that love can be something that we can “be familiar with, to assign a meaning to.” In a way, and that is interesting in its own way, but for me that still does not explain love.

This is an interesting artcle, and it does a nice job of explaining how the chemicals in the brain react to love:
The VTA is part of a key reward system in the brain.

“These are cells that make dopamine and send it to different brain regions,” said Helen Fisher, a researcher and professor at Rutgers University. “This part of the system becomes activated because you’re trying to win life’s greatest prize _ a mating partner.”

But I don’t think this helps with any understanding of our conception of love. The study goes on to say that love is like a drug, working with the same chemicals, but I could have told you that without spending any money on research– and, none of this still actually explains love. It is interesting to note that love produces the same effect in the brain as craving cociane, but that still doesn’t “understand” love.

The article explains how this research could lead to drugs that could help autism and other such neurological disease where people have problems, yadda yadda…

These scientist also studied heartbroken individuals, but they didn’t really go into it. Just more blather about how these things can be measured through chemicals in the brain. And while the article did mention that research is being done on why we are attracted to whom we are attracted to, this is still lacking for me. This, I would argue, is a way to explain love, not understand it, which is why the word understand bothered me at the beginning of the article. None of this still explains any of it really. Sure, love makes our bodies release chemicals, but what is that “something” that triggers it. Why do some girls, some relationships, some situations cause the release and others don’t. Also, it makes this all so un-romantic.

I did like the way the article ended because it is what I am more interested in. I mean, besides looking at how artist have dealt with love and heartbreak– how love/heartbreak has manifest itself in the arts– that is what really interest me.

Here is the end of the article:

Young said that romantic love theoretically can be simulated with chemicals, but “if you really want, you know, to get the relationship spark back, then engage in the behavior that stimulates the release of these molecules and allow them to stimulate the emotions,” he said. That would be hugging, kissing, intimate contact.

“My wife tells me that flowers work as well. I don’t know for sure,” Young said. “As a scientist it’s hard to see how it stimulates the circuits, but I do know they seem to have an effect. And the absence of them seems to have an effect as well.”

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