Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Platonic Love; what it is, and why I think it's so important.


Pla·ton·ic pləˈtänik/ adjective (of love or friendship) intimate and affectionate but not sexual.

"Clara is my friend."


So, I have noticed a lot of fandoms using "Platonic" as a way to describe relationships that do not involve romance/sex. I looked it up on google, and the definition above is what I found. I did a little bit of research, and it seems that in it's original form I think Plantonic Love meant that it was a type of love not only driven by sex. It didn't completely exclude sex, but it put the sexual side of the relationship on the back burner. It is true, however, that it was mostly used to describe friendships and relationships that didn't involve being in love. In our day and age, this is what platonic love is used to describe, and it is the most popular definition.

Platonic Love is important.

friends


Why am I posting about this? Because right now the world is turning it's back on purely friendly love.

I think this is super sad.

Let me explain.

In Greek, there are four different words for love.

1. Philio - companionable love.

2.) Agape - is called out of one's heart by the preciousness of the object loved. It is unconditional love. (This is often used when referring to love between God and His creatures.)

3.) Storge: A natural affection or obligation.

4.) Eros - The love of Passion. (Also known as sexual love.)

In this society Eros has become the only type of love two people are allowed to experience with each other. Eros is the only type of love that really matters. It is the only definition love has anymore. If you aren't in Eros your relationship doesn't hold weight or meaning.

Philio on the other hand.... Philio has been cast aside as something that isn't as important, as strong, or as wonderful as Eros.


Brothers


Let me explain to you a thing. PHILIO IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS EROS. IN FACT RIGHT NOW IT IS MORE IMPORTANT.

I don't know how the majority of people are today. I don't know if most people just don't have friends anymore, or don't understand what it is to have a friend, a best friend, someone who is always there for you, someone you can count on for anything. I don't have a giant number of friends, but I do have a handful of people that I consider to be my best friends and my family, and I feel so blessed that I have them.  Best Friends are amazing. They do crazy things with you. They are goofy and insane and awesome. They're always there when you really need them, and even if you are miles away, even if you don't see each other for months, you know you're always going to be there for each other.

I love my friends. I love Jim, my amazing writer buddy who has done so much for me, and is there to help even if she's had a rough day. I love Sammi, who will literally drive a whole hour to my new place just to stay the night with me. I love Gavin, who has become like a brother to me and my family, and is the sweetest, most gentle guy you could meet. I love all of my sisters, and my amazing, goofy big brother. I love my friends and family. I tell them this as often as I can, whenever I can, however I can. We are all super emotional and affectionate, and we aren't afraid to show that we love each other, and care for each other. We hug. We squeeze hands. We crowd together on the big family couch. We bicker and argue and poke fun. We can drive each other crazy, but we know that no matter what, we are here for each other, and that is an amazing, beautiful thing. There is very little I wouldn't do if it meant helping the people I love.

Why do I love friendship stories? Because they echo what I have. Because they show me that you can get through practically anything if you just have someone there for you. Because when someone touches your soul it is incredible, and if that person is special enough to decide you are going to be their friend, and they are going to face fire for you because they love you enough to do it, then that is something to be cherished. Friendships are important and beautiful and they need to be protected at all costs.

Why do I feel like I (and others like me) need to write about friendships and families?

Because those stories are dying. Everywhere you look, everywhere you go, there is nothing but Eros. You can't have a simple friendship, or even a companionship anymore. If a person is willing to die for their friend, there is more going on. If a person is willing to sacrifice their career for their friend, there is subtext. If friends support each other through rough times, There is so much subtext and sexual tension!!!!! Heck, if two people look at each other longer than three seconds they are obvious IN LOVE and need to be a couple right now, immediately.

"Bucky Barnes and Steven Rogers were inseparable on both school yard and battle field."

Bucky and Steve are a classic example of Philia. They are best friends who would literally die to save each other. Best friends who have gone to hell and back together. Best friends that people insist must have a romantic pull because why else would Steve be able to break through all the brainwashing Bucky had gone through? Why else would Bucky "Follow [that little kid from Brooklyn] into the jaws of death"? Why else would Steve cry when he thought Bucky was dead? Why else would Bucky risk his life, and get his arm blown off to save Steve? Obviously they are IN LOVE. It's Eros.

No guys. It's Philia. Yeah. Bucky loves Steve, and Steve loves Bucky, but it isn't romantic. It's a friendship, it's a bond. This is what happens when you face the world together and somehow come through it. This is what happens when most of your best moments are formed with someone you care about. This is what happens when a person sees you at your best and your worst and doesn't give up on you. This is what happens when a person fights for you and cares for you. This is Philia. This is the simple, innocent and pure love that comes from being there for each other, sharing secrets, sharing suffering, holding on to each other with both hands. This is love in it's finest form. Love isn't always Eros! It doesn't have to be Eros! IT IS VERY OFTEN TIMES PHILIA! But for some reason, our world today is determined to slant everything toward sex and romance, and so they disregard the strength of friendship, and the loyalty that exists between friends, and write it off all sorts of love, caring, and devotion as romantic.

Sherlock and John are another friendship that gets knocked into the ground and made to be something more, because why else would Sherlock fake his own death and ruin his reputation for John? Why would John care so much that Sherlock was gone, and cry at his grave? Obviously they are in love.

No one will ever convince me that you told me a lie.

A large group of fans (and people) seem to think that the only way a relationship works if it is a Love Story. They will ship almost anything they can get their hands on, and they ship it very romantically; Merlin and Arthur, Sam and Dean, Steve Rogers and Bucky, Harry and Hermione, Rick and Daryl, Sam and Frodo, Nick and Monroe, Danno and Steve, Malia and Lydia, Tony and Rhodey,  Benny and Dean, Clara and The Doctor, Shawn and Gus, Juliette and Rosalee, Aragorn and Legolas, Legolas and Gimli, Natasha and Steve Rogers, John and Sherlock, Eleven and Amy, heck, even Dean and Cas! (I don't like their friendship, but that is still all it is. A friendship.) These are only a few of the friendships that fans have turned into a romance for no freaking reason. It's like, if someone is willing to go through crap with another person, if they care about them, if they are happy and at ease around them, and enjoys having fun with them, obviously they are in love.

That is so wrong! No guys. They aren't.

"I know, Shawn. You love me. You love me like two guys can
 love each other and still have wives and kids and connecting pools."


Let me explain to you a THING.

Friendship is just as important as romance. Friendship is just as strong as romance. The love that exists between two friends is something you honestly can't find anywhere else, and it is so, so precious. I don't know why there is this vast group in every fandom ( I call it the Tumblr Group) that insists there is more going on and some sexual crap being hinted at. Oh my gosh, did they encourage each other to keep fighting? Oh my gosh, did they hug? Oh My Gosh, did they brush shoulders?? Oh my gosh, did they actually sit next to each other?? #whatispersonalspace #otpforlife

These sorts of fans have sort of leaked into everything, including books. It's seriously annoying. Like... Guys. Farid and Dustfinger? Farid and Dustfinger???? Why?? They're friends, they're like father and son more than anything else. They sort of have an older brother/little brother relationship, and it's really cute! Why would you ship them? I don't think most fans do, but there is still that groupThis society is so freaking obnoxious! I will say however, that I can kind of deal with it when it's just fans being weird. At least I can tell myself they are reading the story wrong and they are just too obsessed with romance to see anything else. I can't handle it when the writers betray me and actually make the obviously just friends canonically romantic. (I'm looking at you, Megan Stiefvader)

Caring about someone, loving someone, does not equal a romance!

Take Harry and Hermione for instance. I'm not a huge Harry Potter fan, but I enjoy the movies enough that it really bothers me when people ship Harry/Hermione. I only read five of the books, but even so I still never saw for a second that they might be romantic. They were brother and sister and it was sweet and adorable, and I loved it. (I also ignore everything JK Rowling says on the subject because she is just ridiculous at this point. She wrote her story in a certain way. It's annoying that she wants to change it through twitter.) I especially liked how Harry and Hermione's friendship and dynamic was brought to life in the movies. It was so clear that they were as close as siblings, that they were family, best friends, and I really appreciated that.


I loved this dance scene 8-)

Why is it that everything has to be so strongly romantic in society today? I believe it's because people have forgotten what love actually means. It's hard in English, because unlike Greek, English only has one word to describe love. You don't get Philia, Agape, Storge and Eros. You get love, love, love, and love.

Our society has forgotten that love means loyalty. Love means "I will be there for you, no matter what." Love means, 'I won't give up on you.' Love means, 'I'm with you 'till the end of the line.' Love means 'I will sacrifice my time and my own needs for you.' Love means, 'I will take care of you when no one else will.' Love means you value someone else's life enough to risk your own. Love means you are brave enough to value life... even a life that perhaps seems unworthy. 

"I love you." - "I love you, buddy."


Steve and Danny were like a breath of fresh wind. Like Gus and Shawn, they are not at all ashamed to show they love each other, but at the same time they like totally normal best friends. They bicker constantly. They poke fun at each other. They tease each other. They disagree on a lot of things. But a the end of the day, they are still best friend. They would face fire together and they aren't afraid to show it. They aren't afraid to affection, even at the risk of being mistaken for a couple. They're just like, "Yeah, we're best friends, and your dirty minds can think what they want, but that is all that's happening here." They call each other "Babe" they say, "I love you," they hug, they share beers, they tease each other non-stop, they call each other all sorts of names, jerk, control-freak, paranoid and idiot to name a few.  They are even roommates for a little bit, and if either of them ever need a place to crash, they know their friend's house is open to them.

Isn't that the sweetest thing ever?

Why don't people like friendships? Why don't people like brotherly bonding? Why don't people like brothers and sisters existing outside the blood ties? What is wrong with love that isn't Eros? Why is love without a sexual or romantic pull any less important or amazing than being IN LOVE?

I honestly don't understand. I think our world could use some good old fashion friendships stories. Even if people still see them wrong, even if they still ship them, at least there will be a few of us still holding on to the understanding that you can love someone without being being in love with them. You can follow someone through hell without being in a romance. You can love each other more than anything, and still be just friends. (This way readers like us will also have good stories too, which is a bonus.)

This is important!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We must use all the exclamation points!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Now, just so you know, I am not trying to hate on romantic love. I think romantic love is very important too. That is another thing society is trying to crush; the strength of being in love; The strength of a marriage. Society has this twisted idea that if you fight a few times, if you have big, bad fights, if you have one, maybe three or even five years of hard times, you should give up on your marriage even if it means walking away from the person who made you see stars where there weren't any. It's sad. Because if those couples would just persevere through the hard times, they would see their love grow stronger and better. (This might become another blog post, because this subject is highly important also.) True Love and Marriage needs to be saved, just as much as friendship does.

Clint and Laura

For example; Clint and Laura are the only recent couple I can think of (in cinema and popular stories in general) that really brought to the table what it is to have a good marriage - complete with children, a home, and a deep, emotionally romantic friendship. (Like... Laura being pregnant made my day.)

Clint's kids were the cutest 8-)

If you are a writer like me who values friendship, if you are like me and value platonic love, if you value morals and good old fashion decency, please put your pen to some paper and use write to death!!! Write friendship stories to shake society. Write brother stories to shock the fandom. Write brother/sister/sisters stories as a way of saying, "No, you can love without being in love!" Write father/daughter stories, Father/Son stories, Mother/Daughter, Mother/Son stories. Write Mommies and Daddies who don't get divorced,  but fight for their marriage. Write family stories, because right now that is what the world has forgotten about, that is what the world is trying to kill. We need to save it!!

WHAT LILO AND STITCH SAID!



This is my message to writers at large! If you be like me.... write! Write until your wrists cramp and your fingers are sore. Write, write, write, never stop writing.

I was actually thinking of doing a writers camp for people like me, conservatives who love platonic love and actually remember that there should be morality involved in life choices.

What are you thoughts?



*Swings around cape and leaps off stage*




Bella

20 comments:

  1. Thanks for your post, Bella.
    I'm noticing that solid foundations and definitions are being lost, ignored, or disregarded altogether.
    thank you for defending philio.

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    Replies
    1. You are very welcome, Blue! Are you new to my blog? I don't think you've commented before.

      Philio needs to be defended. 8-)

      Delete
    2. Yes, I suppose I am. Hello.
      I`m here via Treskie`s blog.

      Delete
  2. AMEN!
    I'm writing my book and I've made two of my characters have a platonic love as they are best friends, although the guys brother does kinda become a romantic interest for the girl out of the girl and guy friendship, but for the romance, I have based it all off friendship first :D

    ReplyDelete
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    1. CAN I PLEASE READ YOUR BOOK????

      I actually really love romance! I am the that fan who gets into a new show and somewhere in the first season I'm like "aaaaaaaaand I ship it." I just don't like romance corrupting my friendships.

      Delete
    2. SURE YOU MAY! :D (I'm currently writing it by hand but I will type it up and send it to you!)

      Yes so am I! I'm such a hopeless romantic....

      Delete
  3. *applauds hard* Amazing post! Totally agree--we need more Philio love! And hey, you experience a *platonic* friendship before you fall in love with the person (or should, that is, or you're moving really fast in the relationship).

    What drives me nuts is when people mistake a bond of loyalty or duty as Eros. An example would be Tolkien's works: rather than deep admiration or loyalty to comrades-in-arms, people asume subtext. *sighs*. Yeah, no; pretty sure that was not Tolkien's intent.

    Haha, love the phrase and meaning of "Tumblr group." And the GIF of the dance is adorable. The both look like they're a little off-balance. :-)

    One thing I loved about Clint and Laura's relationship is how she encouraged him--told him the team members needed him, told him to go do this job, didn't nag at him for putting himself in danger (even though his death would mean that she would have to raise three kids alone). She was worried about him, yeah, but also kept the bigger picture in mind. It was a portrayal of a different kind of female strength: emotional strength, I guess, and steadfastness.

    A writer's camp is an excellent idea. The writers could bounce off each other's ideas and be encouraged by the knowledge that they are not alone in this support of platonic love. :-) And I definitely write platonic relationships in my stories: siblings, friends of the same age, mentor/student dynamics, characters united by a common cause...there are so many options out there, so many variations that can let writers explore aspects of friendship and personal values. Like, how far *should* your loyalty to someone go? What if it's not your life that the person saved, but the life of a family member?

    Sounds like you have an awesome circle of family and friends. You're very blessed!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. If I did a writers camp would you join? 8-D

      I loved Laura and Clint!! They made me so happy!!! They had such an adorable little family too.

      I love Tolkien's work. It's one of those series I can always find comfort in, no matter what.

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    2. I would love to join!--but a lot depends on the details of the camp, when it is, what my schedule looks like at that time, stuff like that. Are you going to post details of your idea when you get them worked out?

      Cheers!

      Delete
  4. ....I am going to sit here and cry now.

    and I can't even write.

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    Replies
    1. You can write! Don't forget, I've read some of your snippets and they're quite good.

      Delete
    2. Ha. They might not be wretched, but can I also point out that the only thing I've actually finished is fanfiction? Which is utterly useless?

      On a sidenote though, now that I'm not crying: the reason I think they ship those in that sort of friendship is because there is a loyalty and attraction to it. A sense of...no judgement that can't be found in the traditional romantic pairings. (AKA GRIMM AND JULIETTE FOR STERLING EXAMPLE) So they turn to Merthur or Johnlock or Stucky (....how do they GET those names???) because there is a...lasting strength in it. A selflessness. A putting the other before oneself. That may be...somewhat featured in a romantic pairing but....not really. Not anymore. Not on the whole.

      Not saying it's right. As someone that generally detests and abhors romantic pairings and liasons and anything affiliated with that, it's downright literally sickening.

      Maybe people should ALSO write wholesome romantic pairings.

      Don't ask me to though, because I fully plan to avoid romantic pairings at all.

      Except for the stories I accidentally turned characters into lifetime partners.

      Accidentally. Seriously - not my fault.

      Delete
    3. I'm going to do a post on romantic love too 8-) ... There are still some good ones to be found in stories and literature, you just have to look. Very hard.

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    4. HA!!! *shrugs*

      Lizzie and Mr. Darcy and.....nope, that's about it. And that reads a whole lot more like friendship to me.

      Delete
  5. Yes. Oh my gosh YES thank you for writing this post. I agree 100%!!!! I am so fed up with people shipping two people as a couple just because they held hands or actually showed feelings for each other. How can people be so brainwashed and narrow-minded?? Like somehow in the past idk years, good, decent, pure friendship has gotten lost along the way. I love those friendships you mentioned, I love them to death, but they wouldn't survive for two minutes in real life without people coming down with labels. I don't think people even know what true friendship is anymore! Or even true love, because as much as they talk about love, love, love, the divorce rate isn't going down and the abortion rate is still up there and now everyone is trans or gay and it's just SICK. The fact that people actually think this is all okay and normal, it scares me. I'm terrified of what our world is gonna be like in 50 years. Something's so terribly wrong with our society and it's times like this that I just want to pack up and move to an igloo in Antarctica.

    (Sorry...needed to rant there. XD )

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    1. Friendships are so important, and I think people have just forgotten what it is to have a real friend, mostly because people don't have good solid foundations anymore. They give up on relationships so fast. Things like loyalty, promises and obligation don't have much weight in society today, and I find it really sad.

      Honestly... there aren't that many people who are truly LGTB. When the whole "Voting for Gay Marriage" happened, it was voted out of practically every state, and was only ruled in Supreme court by ONE person. So obviously more than half of most people don't believe in it or support it. There are even studies that show the percentages of these sorts of people (LGTB) world wide are like... 2.5%...? Yeah. However, there is a rather big support base and the supporters are so loud that its hard to hear anything else, and it starts to seem like no one is actually moral and normal anymore. 8-P

      And Tunblr is basically the dirty pub for liberals so...

      Can I stay in the Igloo with you? The world is a dangerous place. Full of enemies.

      If I do a Writers Camp, want to join??

      Delete
    2. Sometimes I feel like one of the only people in my generation who actually had a good, normal childhood that wasn't scarred by dysfunctionality. So I think it's the duty of people who grew up like that to keep those wholesome things alive because if we don't, no one else will.

      Seriously??? I didn't know that! And also I suppose it feels like everyone supports LGBT because the people who don't support it are too afraid to raise their voices in protest because all the LGBT supporters attack them like a swarm of screaming piranhas and...ugh our world is a mess. We need more moral, brave people to stand up for us.

      You may have just scared me away from Tumblr...for good...XD

      Please, be my guest. The world is very scary. *hisses at world* We can drink hot chocolate and pray Rosaries while WW3 descends.

      I'd love to!!! Let me know the details of this camp!!

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    3. I will!! I will do a post about it and see how many people get interested in it!

      Can I just say... it is so nice to have another Catholic (besides my sisters) following me!!! 8-D your comment about the rosaries almost made me laugh. I've sometimes thought about running away under ground, making books and praying rosaries whilst hiding from the world. It is a nice fantasy.

      Delete
    4. I'd like to say the exact same thing!!!! :D It's so exciting finding fellow Catholics on the internets. *does a dance*

      Ahhh that's awesome. My fantasy involves less hiding and more getting martyred though. XD Maybe hiding with books first, then striding out into the world like "COME AT ME BRO I'VE GOT JESUS". Yeah. That sounds good.

      Delete
  6. Oh and if you had a writers club I'd so join!

    ReplyDelete

Oi, what are you.... Oh, you just want to comment? Then that's fine, please do! I love comments! but, um, I sort of stalk them.

Pile of good things

Pile of good things