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We are inundated, overwhelmed and irretrievably smitten by thoughts of love. We are made willing and vulnerable to the images, words, and expressions of love in popular media and the day to day culture that surrounds us. Movies, television, popular music, advertising, social media, food, sports, clothing, many popular and unpopular causes, and so many other things have all become a kind of subliminal programming in the modern culture of love.
Love really sells. Everything from diamonds to diapers to pizzas to pet food. More than anything, the material world has discovered something in us. It’s either a buried treasure or a ticking time bomb embedded deep in our personal foundations.
Regrettably, it’s an involuntary response, sometimes quietly seductive, sometimes intensely gratifying, and almost always a confirmation of one of our most powerful vulnerabilities. We are motivated by the possibilities and fantasies that are the promised rewards of the search for love.
We are surprised, even shocked sometimes, at the lengths to which we will go to experience what the modern culture of love promises us. On the one hand, we are made to think that the occurrence of love is so natural, so ordinary, so human that we merely need to exist and breathe to eventually claim the right to experience the feeling. So we wait in anticipation of that moment.
At the same time, we are made to believe that the occurrence of love is so special, so extraordinary, so beyond the reach of a mere human, that we must make an extraordinary effort to act, speak, look and consume in a certain way just to qualify for an experience of the feeling. So we feverishly search for that moment.
We are so driven, even desperate in our considerations of love that we have gradually widened but not necessarily deepened our definition of love.
In this episode of The Question podcast, you will hear highlights from Frederick Tamagi’s presentation on love, and the music of Joanna Drummond.