Love as an Art

Love as an Art
Love as an Art

For Erich Fromm, love, more than an object is a faculty. Faculty that we must know and develop.

The author, in his book,The Art of Loving, explores the concepts that we handle socially regarding love.

We all seek love, to a greater or lesser extent, even if it is not consciously recognized. The point is that, frequently, the focus is located more on getting to be loved, than on learning to love.


The love requires knowledge and effort, it is not a random and casual effect that is found walking through life from one moment to another.

Love is exercised and worked, it implies a process of knowing oneself and the other, and a development of the capacity of both to grow in that mutual bond, where the communication is the fundamental tool.

Since Psychoanalysis, the human need to be loved stems from the fear, resulting from the Oedipus Complex, alose parental love.

One of the engines for most people to seek to please, adhere to imposed social patterns, manners and ways of dressing, has to do with this need to be part of society and culture.

Feeling part of society and being loved, accepted and respected by others.

La guilt and shame that emerge as a result of some behavior that is socially frowned upon, or of some “mistake” in the way we act and behave, links us to that central fear: losing being loved, consistent with the unconscious fantasy of being expelled, abandoned.

Fromm calls it attempts by the human being to counteract or repair the Separatity. This concept refers to the notion that the human being acquires throughout his development, that he is anindividual separated from the rest.

This process is he althy in that it gives him the possibility of constituting himself subjectively, but at the same time it causes him great anguish, because it implies that he can be left alone.

In an effort to overcome this feeling of separateness, or according to other authors, alterity, the human being tries everything to be loved by others. However, in this effort, the dimension of what the ability to love implies is lost, a tool without which the continuation of any bond is difficult.

It is also necessary to differentiate the experience of initial infatuation, from the permanence in love.

Lo first is short-lived and implies the emotion and excitement produced by the encounter between two people who manage to drop their barriers to bond emotionally. At this moment, the ex altation is the product of the contrast with the previous state of solitude, being the initial revolutionary union insofar as it has achieved the objective: to stop beingalone.

But this, like we said, doesn't last too long. Both quickly get to know each other more deeply and the intimacy they have achieved gradually loses its miraculous character. The excitement subsides and this is the moment when each one's ability to love should come into play.

Union with another is not something that occurs per se. We are individuals, and we must support this desire to unite with effort, work and patience. Inertia leads us back to loneliness. The other, no matter how well known he is to us and for more years shared, will always be that: another.

And understanding your circumstances and inner world will always be a challenge.

The communication between human beings is fraught with difficulties,because we can never truly know what the other interpreted from what we said.

Hence the famous Lacanian misunderstanding. Subjectivity and alterity imply that there will always be problems when it comes to ties.

The point is to keep it in mind,so as not to expect miracles. In love, a constant and persevering task will always be necessary, and in this, there is no complaint worth it.

True reflection is to question how willing we are to carry it out, and take responsibility for that bond we want to sustain.

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