My Thoughts on Eros

Last week the assigned reading for my Plato course was “The Symposium”, the objective (from the point of view of Socrates) is to speak on the topic of Eros, or Love. There was an interesting discussion that occured during the lecture following that. There is a claim made by Socrates that to be complete a person must find their “other half”. “Other half” in this context is understood to be the person’s true love. The Women’s Studies minor of the group spoke up on this topic, with the expected objection of “a woman doens’t need a man to be complete”. This is where I interjected that because of Socrate’s own status (single and refuses to play with his boy toy), it is likely that he meant more than human companionship. It is my personal belif that Socrates’s argument is acurate, but that current societal views are a little skewed on this. The example I used in class was a single painter who is completely happy being alone with his paint, brushes and canvas in a room for days. Loving an activity is no different than loving a human. People who love other people are probably gasping for air on that comment, but its true. Love is based in passion and seeks things like wisdom (in an exchange of thought, or experience in the case of the arts). In most of the symposium love is seen as being a “messenger” between the world of mortals and the realm of the gods (or of divinity/perfection). Humans can’t experience perfection, so we seek love. Some of us require reciprocity of love, we must have human response to be happy. Others are fine with just expressing love whether to someone who doesn’t reciprocate, or in the form of art for others to enjoy. Even in art there is a form of reciprocity when it is possible for feedback on what has been created. Parallels between human relationships and art don’t stop there, think about the symbolism in each. In relationships there is a tenancy for symbolism to allow the relationship to progress, or in some cases it affirms a relationship. Flowers, rings and candy are things that used as symbols of love in our culture, perhaps overused as symbols. Art on the other hand is the direct result of passions being focused, and most of the time will have some sort of abstraction of the artist’s emotions hiding in it. The art of philosophy (translated to mean “love of wisdom”) involves a life long quest for the ultimate wisdom, other motivations are irrelavant for people who take on the title of “Philosopher”. I used to think that philosophy was basicly greek history, but now im finding out that it is highly active currently and just happens to have old roots. I consider myself to be a student of philosophy, but not really a philosopher yet, primarily because I can’t think like one, perhaps some day thought.
I personally seek love in people, in my hobbies/arts and in aspiring to romance wisdom. I find that I tend to love people who are incapable of reciprocating the feelings and I also tend to be attracted to people who are out of my reach. In the realm of loving arts I express myself through culinary arts, ceramics and various other creative endevours. With Philosopyhy I am fairly new, but I have an obsession towards mentally exploring abstract concepts and viewing things in abstract ways.
I really am not sure of the true nature of eros in the modern world, it is very confusing and the level of abstraction of messages in relationships is becoming too high.