The Brain in Love

“Have you ever been rejected by somebody who you really loved?” And the second question was, “Have you ever dumped somebody who really loved you?” And almost 95 percent of both men and women said yes to both. Almost nobody gets out of love alive.

It was a portion from the video of Helen Fisher’s talk on The Brain in Love.”  Helen E. Fisher (born 1945) is a Canadian-American anthropologist and human behavior researcher.  She is a professor at Rutgers University.  Fisher has studied romantic interpersonal attraction for over 30 years.  Prior to becoming a research professor at Rutgers University, she was a research associate at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. [more]  Most people consider her an expert in love and attraction.  I’ve seen a lot of her videos in YouTube and, in my opinion, they could somehow give some kind of comfort to the confused and searching.

Have you ever wondered why people almost always go through the entire experience of falling in love despite the many warnings that litter the world against it?  Oscar Wilde once said,

When one is in love, one always begins by deceiving oneself, and one always ends by deceiving others. That is what the world calls a romance.”

Maybe, like me, you too, are wondering why he had a dim view on love.  Even Shakespeare’s famous words from A Midsummer Night’s Dream,

The course of true love never did run smooth,”

somehow summarizes what he thinks of it.  I remember seeing the movie “The Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind” and for the life of me, I couldn’t quite figure out what it meant—not until I went through the same thing.  Only goes to show how people ignore explicit warnings despite the many voices that cautions us to stop and reconsider.  Marie E. Eschenbach was right when she said,

“We don’t believe in rheumatism and true love until after the first attack.”

One question though, like in the movie “The Eternal Sunshine…,” when we get hurt in the process, should we choose to forget or not.  There is wisdom in what Jane Austen said,

“One does not love a place the less for having suffered in it unless it has all been suffering, nothing but suffering.”

There would always be something that we would remember but it is up to us to choose what memory to leave behind and what we would choose to cherish forever.

Transcript of the Video


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