Encyclopedia of Sciences and Religions

2013 Edition
| Editors: Anne L. C. Runehov, Lluis Oviedo

Love (Affective, Sexual)

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-8265-8_1364

Related Terms

 Adoration;  Affection;  Attraction;  Desire;  Eros;  Infatuation;  Passion;  Romance

The dimension of human life known as love seems unique. In fact, theologians have occasionally proposed that in order to balance out the overemphasis on the capacity for abstract thought in defining humanity, the capacity for love should be underlined instead. As it is, though, affectual bonding between parents and their offspring or an individual and a particular sexual partner is seen in many taxa of birds and mammals. Hence, when it comes to love, humans are clearly not alone. Based upon the terminology used in Ancient Greek texts, one should distinguish between at least four types of love: the  romantic and sexual erōs, the friendship oriented philia, the parental storgē, and the selfless, forgiving agapē. Of these, the present entry concerns only the first.

As Andreas Bartels and Semir Zeki comment, romantic love, celebrated throughout the ages as perhaps the most overwhelming of...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of TartuTartuEstonia