Love…. The 6 Different Kinds

The Different Kinds of Love

The Greeks distinguished at least 6 different kinds of love: 

To read the article in full go to: The Meaning of Life – Reason and Meaning

1) Eros was the notion of sexual passion and desire but, unlike today, it was considered irrational and dangerous. It could drive you mad, cause you to lose control and make you a slave to your desires. The Greeks advised caution before one gives into these desires.

2) Philia denoted friendship which was thought more virtuous than sexual or erotic love. It refers to the affection between family members, colleagues, and other comrades. However these persons are much closer to you than Facebook friends or Twitter followers.

3) Ludus defines a more playful love. This ranges from the playful affection of children all the way to the flirtation or the affection between casual lovers. Playing games, engaging in casual conversation, or flirting with friends are all forms of this playful love.

4) Pragma refers to the mature love of lifelong partners. After a lifetime of compromise, tolerance, and shared experiences a calm stability and security ensues. Commitment between partners is the key; they mutually support and respect each other.

5) Agape is a radical, selfless, non-exclusive love; it is altruism directed toward everyone (and perhaps to the environment too.) It is love extended without concern for reciprocity. Today we would call this charity; or what the Buddhists call loving kindness.

6) Philautia is self-love. The Greeks recognized two forms. In its negative form philautia is the selfishness that wants pleasure, fame, and wealth beyond what one needs. Narcissus, who falls in love with his own reflection, exemplifies this kind of self-love. In its positive form philautia refers to a proper pride or self-love. We can only love others if we love ourselves; and the warm feelings we extend to others emanate from good feelings we have for ourselves. If you are self-loathing, you will have little love to give.