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It's weird to think that love is nothing more than a chemical reaction in the brain designed to help us find the one person that will provide us with the most productive offspring. amirite?

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I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions. After all, not all loving relationships result in offspring.

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

Like lesbian and gay relationships. You obviously can't reproduce if your partner is the same gender as you.

Katzes avatar Katze Yeah You Are +46Reply
@Katze Like lesbian and gay relationships. You obviously can't reproduce if your partner is the same gender as you.

Yup, that's mostly what I had in mind, as well as heterosexual couples who just don't want children. Then of course there's the relationships between friends and families, but I assumed that those didn't count in this definition of "love."

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

Humans can't choose to love or to not love, what are you talking about? I can't just be like, "Well, this is somewhat of a hassle, so I figure I'll stop loving that woman. Okay, sweet, done."

Emperorerrors avatar Emperorerror Yeah You Are +21Reply
@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

How is it not more than just chemical reactions? The only reason people think that it's something more is because the chemicals in your brain are making you feel that way. If it weren't for the chemicals, there'd be no love. There is nothing else involved. It's not "bullshit" to call it that. It's bullshit to say that there's more but we just can't see it. Lack of evidence for it being something more isn't evidence.

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

I think love is a little more than chemical reactions in our brains.
Love is also our perception of these chemical reactions. That's why not everyone loves the same way; we all have different perceptions of what love is.
Our perceptions are not merely influenced by chemical reactions inside of our brains, they are also influenced by things happening outside of our bodies.

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

And our perceptions are chemical reactions too. Our free will is also a manifestation of such reactions. Nothing in our minds no matter how profound I anything more than chemical reactions. It's the effect the reactions have that make awesome things.

B10ckH34ds avatar B10ckH34d Yeah You Are +5Reply
@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

(pikabeau) In the same way not every one gets angry the same way, or sad, and often it has a lot to do with what's going on outside your body,.

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

Everything that happens in your brain is either a chemical reaction our a neutral impulse, including your perception of those reactions, your memories, thoughts, and emotions.

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

Everyone else's point is that those perception are chemicals, and the reason those surrounding are going on around you are also because of chemicals, and everything is chemicals and there is nothing more

Anonymous +1Reply
@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

It's like me adding caesium to nitric acid. It needed external influence from me, and the reaction was pretty damn awesome (deadly, but big explosions are awesome), but it's still just a chemical reaction. Love is one of the most powerful forces in the world because it drives people to do things they wouldn't do otherwise, but it is still the result of nothing more than a chemical reaction.

I'm pretty sure we agree on this, but thinking of it in different ways...

B10ckH34ds avatar B10ckH34d Yeah You Are +1Reply
@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

I don't see your argument. Chemical reactions based on and responses to other things are still no more than chemical reactions.

B10ckH34ds avatar B10ckH34d Yeah You Are 0Reply
@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

You're missing the point. Love is not just a bunch of chemical reactions if it relies on perception. Our perception comes from what goes on around us. Our surroundings are the result of chemical reactions, but they are not chemical reactions collectively-- just like your shoe not being a cow.

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

Our perceptions are not just chemical reactions though. If it were not for people interacting with us outside of our bodies we would have nothing to base our perceptions on.

@SalientK I don't think it's designed for that, I think it's just a consequence of higher thinking and complex emotions...

Still just a chemical reaction, and humans are still just animals, and "personalities" are still just the result of training.

Mike_Hawks avatar Mike_Hawk Yeah You Are -8Reply
@Mike_Hawk Still just a chemical reaction, and humans are still just animals, and "personalities" are still just the result of...

I'm sorry you have such a horrific view of humanity and life. Love is so much more than a chemical reaction just like having a child is so much more than an egg combining with sperm to make a being.

@Janae17 I'm sorry you have such a horrific view of humanity and life. Love is so much more than a chemical reaction just...

I don't have a horrific view, I have a purely objective and rational view. We are a slave to the chemical reactions in our brains. Certain chemicals attach to their respective receptors and send the signals to make us feel how we do.

Mike_Hawks avatar Mike_Hawk Yeah You Are +27Reply
@Mike_Hawk I don't have a horrific view, I have a purely objective and rational view. We are a slave to the chemical reactions...

Obviously you have never been in love, or had someone truly love you or you would know life is more than being objective, rational, and scientific. If we're purely slaves to chemical reactions how do people recovery from drug addiction?

@Janae17 Obviously you have never been in love, or had someone truly love you or you would know life is more than being...

I am in love, and they love me back. Being human is more than that, yes, but being human is being flawed. There's no transcendentional force making you feel love, it's still just signals hitting receptors. You can do absolutely nothing without the chemicals in your brain. Pills are based around this; introducing chemicals into the brain to alter feelings. People recover from drug addiction by severing their supply of the drug, and after a while, the body stops needing it.

Mike_Hawks avatar Mike_Hawk Yeah You Are +13Reply
@Mike_Hawk I am in love, and they love me back. Being human is more than that, yes, but being human is being flawed. There's...

Um humans can choose to love and to not love.

We have free will, and that makes us different from animals. I think we can observe chemical reactions going on in the brain when we love, however, I think there is also a LOT more going on that we can't see. We aren't Gods. We can't use science to explain everything. We can only use it to observe.

Just because we aren't capable of observing something doesn't mean its not there/ I full-heartedly think that love is more than just chemical reactions - that's bullshit to just call it that.

Anonymous -31Reply
@Mike_Hawk Still just a chemical reaction, and humans are still just animals, and "personalities" are still just the result of...

I never said that it wasn't a chemical reaction or that humans are not animals; I'm just saying it is consequential rather than designed and that the offspring factor doesn't count in many cases, which pokes a huge hole in the premise of this post.

@SalientK I never said that it wasn't a chemical reaction or that humans are not animals; I'm just saying it is consequential...

I think it would be designed had society not come as far as it has. From a biological standpoint, homosexuality and ugliness are flaws, and wouldn't be bred through due to how we are "designed". Perhaps it is consequential, but this series of consequence has "designed" it and it's function.

Mike_Hawks avatar Mike_Hawk Yeah You Are +6Reply

LUST is the chemical reaction designed to help us create the most productive offspring. Love isn't easy explained by biology, it's something nobody completely understands yet.

Anonymous +40Reply
@LUST is the chemical reaction designed to help us create the most productive offspring. Love isn't easy explained...

Lust and love are felt due to different chemicals and have different purposes. Feelings of love are meant to keep a couple together to better raise the helpless human infant.

You'll find that feelings of love will fade after a while if nothing changes in the relationship because your body will build a tolerance to said chemicals. Every couple will go through this. If you're lucky, your partner will develop an attachment to you just from having you in his life for so long. It isn't the same chemical based attachment though.

@LUST is the chemical reaction designed to help us create the most productive offspring. Love isn't easy explained...

Lust and love are both chemical reactions. Just because it's easy understand the way lust makes you feel and not the way love makes you feel doesn't mean we can't explain why we feel it.

Totally agree with you. The chemicals you're talking about are Dopamine, Serotonin and Epinephrine

Love is a sketchy word with [insert population of the world] different variations as to what it means. Example: I might openly tell my friends that I love them, but someone else may only reserve the word for that special someone they are most fond of.

StickCavemans avatar StickCaveman Yeah You Are +10Reply

I like sexytimes

lol

Anonymous +4Reply

I love you with all of my hea- I mean brain.

Reading the comments i feel like a lot of people are missing the point. YES, it is just a chemical reaction, YES its designed with an evolutionary principle in mind, BUT why would that make it any less special?
Eating is technically for nutritional purpopses, yet everyone can agree that you eat not just because of hunger, but because it makes you feel good. sure those good feelings are meant to make you eat more evolutionary speaking, but we are smart enough as a species to find other reasons to eat other than what "our body wants".
Love is the same way.

Puroboricua13s avatar Puroboricua13 Yeah You Are +3Reply
@Puroboricua13 Reading the comments i feel like a lot of people are missing the point. YES, it is just a chemical reaction, YES...

We'd still reproduce without making it feel like a chore without a chore because there's still lust.

Love may not be very responsible for survival and on an individual scale having no sexual feelings for someone isn't either but in a societal scale it it. Not just for yourself, for your whole species. And even still, I think the love a parent automatically feels for their newborn has a factor in how well they take care of it and the baby's survival chance.

Why is that if anything eating is more special if eating is something you'll die without but love isn't yet you still feel it anyway?

@Puroboricua13 Reading the comments i feel like a lot of people are missing the point. YES, it is just a chemical reaction, YES...

Love is supposed to feel good to maintain human connections, not reproduce. You reproduce because of lust and there can be lust without love.

Anonymous 0Reply
@Puroboricua13 Reading the comments i feel like a lot of people are missing the point. YES, it is just a chemical reaction, YES...

I personally disagree. I do think love isn't as special as people say it is. It feels special, yeah, but that doesn't make it special. It's just supposed to feel good because...well, how else would we reproduce without making it feel like a chore?

Also have to keep in mind that love, unlike eating, isn't necessary for survival. There are asexual people, aromantic people. They live very well without ever feeling sexually and/or romantically attracted to someone. So really, if anything, eating is probably more special than love. And I'd have to agree, because I love eating.

AdonisBatheuss avatar AdonisBatheus Yeah You Are -1Reply

LOVE IS MAGIC.

But men are biologically designed to have multiple partners, so their genes have more of a chance to be passed on. Wouldn't falling in love with one woman be bad for that?

@LittleRed But men are biologically designed to have multiple partners, so their genes have more of a chance to be passed on...

Yes. Humans did not evolve to be monogamous. In modern society, promiscuous behavior remains prominent, despite societal pressures to the contrary: a small percentage of men have sex with a large percentage of women. Women are attracted to "risky", masculine men during the most fertile period of their cycle and "safer" men during other times. Powerful men have affairs that later seem senseless (think Clinton, Schwarznegger, etc). The divorce rate has reached alarming highs. The idea of human monogamy developed during a time when women were oppressed and men needed to be kept complacent. The idea of eternal romantic love is an even more recent concept, arising in only the last few hundred years: less than .5% of human history. Lust lasts long enough for the average woman to get pregnant, and having a child tends to motivate the father to stick around and invest in his offspring. When a relationship does last for decades, it's not the result of undying passion, it's the result of societal pressure and friendship. As for the couples who do claim to have undying passion? They're the exception. Most people will never find that kind of love. That's just a fact.

If this were actually true, then yes it would be weird. It would have made more sense if you'd said lust.

I think what OP is that love is the RESULT of a chemical reaction in the brain, which is true of every emotion.

I like this topic and wish I knew more about it. I watched some kind of documentary a while back, and a scientist was trying to see what love looked like in the brain. She put a woman in a cat scan machine where there was a picture of a stranger, and she took a picture of the brain. Then she put an image of the woman's love over her, and there was a significant, visible change in a specific part of that brain scan. I believe the brain and chemicals do control a lot of love. They say chocolate results in the release of a lot of the same chemicals. At the same time, that scientist knew there was more to it than can currently be explained. I know a lot more about how lust and attraction works, and lust seems more tangible than love and has more to do with advantageous coupling and offspring.

_Jojo_s avatar _Jojo_ Yeah You Are +1Reply
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@1772534

...I... I don't get the point you're making.

Anonymous +1Reply

but people don't always pick the person who will provide the most productive offspring

julieLs avatar julieL Yeah You Are 0Reply

Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't definitively say that they are. Much of still needs further examination, and yes, chemical reactions are a big part of the process of emotions, but you can't just say they are the only thing. The Whole perception vs. sensation is a key example of why we can't narrow emotions down to JUST chemical reactions. They obviously play a big part but do not fully encompass the idea.

@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

My bad. Wabout people who are clinically depressed? We know about it. So much so that we can even create a pill to go away. I think that shows we know a lot about emotions and the chemicals that cause them. My thing with God was that a lot of thiests see God as the outside force that drives these things, the something extra, but as you are not the case, nevermind. What I meant by "What sort of outside force outside our own bodies could be responsible for your feelings, besides the situation situation that caused the emotions, but that's not what I mean." is exactly what I said without the double "situation". If your own body isn't responsible for it, what is? Humans are purley biological. Nothing else could possibly bring on emotions other than the outside situation that causes them, like your team going to state, but that's not what everyone means by "something else". We feel emotions because we're supposed to. Fear with adrenaline is supposed to keep us alert and able to protect ourselves. When we fall in love, our bodies release dopamine, norepinephrine and phenylethylamine. Dopamine is responsible for the euphoric feeling. Norepinephrine acts like adrenaline. The two togethe...

@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

What sort of outside force outside our own bodies could be responsible for your feelings, besides the situation situation that caused the emotions, but that's not what I mean. There's no rational reasoning to thinking that there's something else, unless you believe in God or something then it's understandable. If we were talking about the chemicals in your brain making you sad, happy, mad, or the love you feel for friends and family would you still think feelings weren't just a chemical hitting a receptor brought on by the situation like your team going to state or being clinically depressed because you lack certain chemicals in your brain? There's no reason to think that love is some kind of force or something that we can't see. I think the only reason so maybe people think that it is is because it's love and it's supposed to be special.

@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

r intense energy, excitement (like when you're about to go see them), difficulty sleeping (like when you're thinking about them), cravings, loss of appetite and intense focus on them. Serotonin levels of people in love are close to people with OCD, which also explains why people are focused on their partners when they're around. The neural circuits associated with judging others are suppressed, explaining why people who are in love don't notice their partner's flaws as much. This happens because evolution happened, we want to raise a succeful healthy child together and we mate with people who's genes are compatible with ours. Giving birth releases a flood of hormones, making a women instantly love her child and forget the pain she just experianced. We're like this because of our brains.

@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

I said love AND emotions. So i was talking about being gally, sad, how you feel when you're depressed or your team goes to state. I think all emotions have a little something more than just the chemical reactions that cause them. Maybe that's because of the way our brain perceives them, so maybe they become more than just sensations we experience. And yes, I do believe in God, but that actually had nothing to do with my argument. I'm very interested in the science/psychology of emotions, partly becaus I think they are really important to understanding our existence. Also, genuine question here, what were the first two sentences of your reply trying to say? I feel like they got jumbled a bit in the typing process.

@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

Still Colebowl just not logged in, I'd like to say sorry for all the spelling mistakes, I'm on internet explorer. Also the beggining few sentences are missing a few words cuz I kept re edditing.

Anonymous 0Reply
@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

Ah, that makes sense. I just didn't really understand what you were trying to say the first time haha. And yes, we know lots about emotions, especially when related to psychological disorders and problems. However, there is a lot we don't know, and psychologists are always finding new problems with the solutions we supposedly have. Maybe it's more of an area specific debate, but I'm just saying that we don't have it all pinned down.

@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

Psychologists don't study the brain, neuroscience does. With machines, that show brain activity. We can stimulate what ever part of the brain we want. We know everything there is to know about what causes emotions. They can make them go away and set them off, if there was more to it then we wouldn't be able to do that.

Anonymous 0Reply
@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

Actually, neuroscience falls under the category of psychology in a lot of cases, and they intertwine a lot even if you aren't taking a psychological approach to neuroscience. And if we can "make them go away and set them off" without anymore for us to figure out, why can't we permanently cure mood disorders? Why do treatments for bipolar disorder not always work, or only have temporary dulling of symptoms rather than just fixing the problem? Why can't we cure depression? Most anti-depressants warn that worse depression and thoughts of suicide may occur. We don't know everything about emotions, nor can we simply "make them go away and set the off". We can cut out sections of the brain that have a lot to do with emotions, and we can fire nerve receptors with electric shocks that can cause similar feelings to that of certain emotions, but we can't claim to know it all just yet.

@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

That doesn't change the fact that it's neuroscience that studies the brain.
1) misdiagnosis
2) because your brain does not make the chemicals or it makes too much of them, it needs constant intake of the chemical for treatment to actually work you can't just give one big dose.
3) When a problem in the brain isn't a chemical problem, we can fix it permanently. If it is, then the treatment has to be done everyday. You couldn't just use a magnetic zap to cure depression like you can use it to improve other brain disorders like some form of autism.

That's like saying we don't fully understand the heart because we have to periodically change fake heart valves.

Anonymous 0Reply
@Wynaut Love and emotion aren't solely based off of chemical reaction, at least science has acknowledged that it can't...

Um, no it's not. First of all, medications don't work like magic. Even someone correctly diagnosed and on the correct medicine will have symptoms of their disorder, and medications often have to be changed over time because the body adapts to them. Also, certain forms of depression actually do take well to a kind of shock therapy (it works somewhat like a reboot for the brain). Yes neuroscience studies the brain. I didn't say that it didn't. You said that psychologists don't. But they do. That's what psychology is based upon - the brain and the mind (two separate ideas, I know, but they study both). And I never said instant curing mood disorders (which are often chemically based in the brain) with some big dosage of a magic pill, I said curing them. Even with treatment over long periods of time, curing the problem usually doesn't occur. It's nothing like replacing heart valves, because it deals with problems of the brain and the mind. Even if we fully understand the brain, we don't fully understand the mind. Scientists can't even fully explain consciousness, so how would they claim to fully understand emotions?

Love is just a biological attraction caused by hormones and usually goes away as quickly as it comes. I don't believe in true love.

Humanity is cocky and likes to think that it has the answers for everything, since we are the only ones we know of that understand science.

But we aren't gods - we can't explain everything, and I don't think love (one of nature's most POWERFUL forces) can be fully explained.

Just because we can only see part of something doesn't mean that that's all it is. Love goes beyond just chemical reactions. Its far more beautiful and extraordinary than that, and calling it just "a chemical reaction" makes me sick to the stomach. And I don't think science is anywhere close to explaining why people die for one-another in the name of love :O

Anonymous -3Reply
@Humanity is cocky and likes to think that it has the answers for everything, since we are the only ones we know of...

Humans are biochemical machines. Everything that happens in our minds is a chemical reaction. Love is a chemical reaction. Cockiness is a chemical reaction. Skepticism is a chemical reaction. The fact that these statements make you nauseous is a chemical reaction.

personThingys avatar personThingy Yeah You Are +16Reply
@Humanity is cocky and likes to think that it has the answers for everything, since we are the only ones we know of...

Just because these things are chemical reactions doesn't mean they're any less important or life-changing. It simply means they're products of our own biochemistry- not universal forces.
Not disagreeing with personThingy, just replying to the top comment.

I think that its our bodies that make trick us into makin babies but love is in our minds...and hearts

tmt890s avatar tmt890 Yeah You Are -6Reply

A chemical reaction...? No. True love is MUCH, MUCH more than that. It can't be put into scientific terms... By anybody.

Anonymous -12Reply
@A chemical reaction...? No. True love is MUCH, MUCH more than that. It can't be put into scientific terms... By anybody.

I agree that we have a lot more to discover but the way anon phrases it makes it sound like it's more than just scientific, which I disagree with because everything is science even if we don't understand it.

@A chemical reaction...? No. True love is MUCH, MUCH more than that. It can't be put into scientific terms... By anybody.

Nah, I agree with anonymous, we think we know all about how emotions work, but we have so much more to discover.

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