Marriage: Is it Love’s Grave?

Calista Alma
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April 10, 2024

Have you ever experienced a tranquil summer night, with the gentle chorus of frogs in the background? It marks the arrival of the mating season. Mother Nature bestows creatures with pleasure and peculiar biological mechanisms to induce mating and reproduction, ensuring that even thunder gods need not roam the earth to punish virgin animals, including the neutered cat.

Millions of years on this planet:
Love is merely the quivering of four bed legs. But wait a minute. It turns out that “Love is understanding and empathy…” on last weekend’s podcast, and Jack’s saintly sacrifice for Rose was just a piece of rag or what!? If I were wrapped in a cloth, sitting in some cave, momentarily detached from the passage of time, and looking at the plank that Jack and Rose floated on, I could say:

The love and marriage you know today are products of youthful culture, only popular in recent centuries. They originate from Romantic Love and Marriage Based on Romantic Love.

Although feelings of affection have existed in every era (and even in horses and whales!), throughout most of history, the notion of eloping from the village, encountering a series of dramas, and then mutually taking poison to be together forever, was simply a comical waste of labor and time, rather than stirring anyone in the village. For millions of years, love was to bind the community against winter, wild beasts, enemies, and extinction, while marriage was to expand alliances and create successive generations, rather than revolving around private romantic notions.

Everything exploded after the industrial revolution: better personal finances led to more personal emotions. No wonder it’s called the holy grail of consumerism: love is redefined, painted, and constantly upgraded like the 18cm cardboard box you compete with Tim Cook for every autumn to bring to your spouse, regardless of millions of years, cohabitation simply repeats the actions of eating, sleeping, mating, and brushing teeth the next morning.

Last year, while having drinks with my adventurous friend, she blamed me, her nature-loving friend, every time she had a chance to admire nature, for a long-standing joke that she couldn’t erase from her mind: “We are not civilized just because we love trees and hate urban areas. Humans have been in the wilderness for a few million years, compared to the 200 years of modern cities. We are monkeys homesick.”

Amidst the chorus of frogs, nature has healed love quarrels, or the “inner monkey” within you is being revived because just yesterday in history, the complicated notions of love that it struggles with did not exist, so where is there a grave to heal?

I hope this philosophical perspective has helped you temporarily set down the heavy burden of ideas and look at the world as if it doesn’t revolve around you or your era, to find more effective approaches to your issues in today’s myriad of ideologies.

Review : 4.1/11
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