Friday, October 21, 2016

Love and Appreciation

Dearly Beloved,
    When I wrote to you last about Love Tanks, I left out mention of Appreciation. It is debatable that this is a fifth Love Tank, but I eventually decided it was not. Even if it was a tank, I do not consider it as falling under a definition of love for a few reasons.
    First, it's always separate when we use it in language, We say "loved and appreciated" and not "love is appreciation." Second, Love requires two parties, but only one is required to act. Appreciation, on the other hand, indicates a return, meaning two parties need to act. Third reason is that it's relationship to the love languages and love tanks is unique. While it acts like a tank in that it can be drained, it can also drain all of the love tanks. It also is filled by any of the love languages, but which one is dependent on the situation.
    Something you must consider is an interesting paradox. It's good to give and receive appreciation, but bad to want it. The reason behind this is that the former can focus the attention on the other party in a good light, but the latter focuses on your self and can place the other party in a negative light, negatively impacting your ability to love. That negativity not only damages your relationships, but also drains your love tanks, making you depressed and lonely.

    Remember though that appreciation itself is good. The thing that is bad is the feeling of entitlement. If you think about it, it can be quite often that you perform an act of love with no expectation of a reward. Instead you act because you love, focusing solely on the receiving party. However, once the idea that you should be rewarded enters your head, you begin to take those acts of love and focus on yourself rather than your beloved. By transforming the acts of love into fuel for entitlement, you become bitter. This is true with all senses of entitlement. For the sake of your soul and happiness, you need to drop the selfish-feeding desires of entitlement and just let them happen or not.

    Now I know this is difficult, especially for me. When there is injustice or abuse of rights, I become very angry or depressed. However, I believe it is helpful to start dismantling your ideas of entitlement one by one, hopefully making it to just the core rights, things you need in order to become a better human being. If you can go beyond that, your ability to forgive will be divine.

    Whether you believe or not, actually practicing Christians have an advantage here. This is because they have a perfect model as a result of their beliefs. God should be entitled to praise, honor, and respect, but instead people mocked, scoffed, and executed him in an excruciating manner. Yet, instead of condemning these people, God spoke words of forgiveness and proceeded to suffer and die for them. When you believe that, it should have a profound impact on your senses of entitlement.
    If you examine it even further, even though Jesus displayed no sense of entitlement, he still fought for the rights of others and rebuked their oppressors. The point is that he was not selfish, but loving, according to Christian beliefs. When you believe all of those things, there is no greater role model of love.

With Love,
N. D. Moharo

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Love Languages Revisted: The Love Tanks

Love Languages Revisited
My loved child,
               I have written to you about love languages before. Taking from what I have written on the various definitions of love, perhaps we can understand the nature of love languages even better. To recap, the five love languages are Physical Touch, Words of Affirmation, Gift Giving, Quality Time, and Acts of Service. I gave four definitions of love but here I will describe them in terms of feeling loved. When we say we feel loved, we can mean that we feel Cared For, Liked, Admired, or Wanted. Each of the Love Languages address these accordingly
               You may have noticed that there is a mismatch of numbers, but that is okay. What I have figured is that there is some overlap. Some languages will address the same feeling, and a language can address multiple feelings. However, in order to have a full “Love Tank,” you need to have all four addressed.
               Perhaps the first thing we should do is establish that you have four love tanks, but one set and probably only one primary tank by which you judge if you are loved or not. I say four because it’s not the Love Languages themselves are not the tanks, but the fuel, if we are thinking like gas tanks. The tanks are the four ways we feel loved. However, due to the unique nature of humanity, the size of each tank is most likely not the same. As a result, three out of four can be filled, but the primary tank can account for over half, meaning you still won’t feel loved. On the other hand, it also means that it does not take much to fill the others, and you do that with different Love Languages.
               To feel like we are cared for, the primary fuel is Acts of Service. The secondary fuel is Gift Giving. Quality Time and Physical Touch are wildcards depending on the relationship. A child playing with his mother might feel cared for, but a child playing with friends will likely not have that feeling. Gift Giving is also a wildcard, but for the reason that if the gift is something we really desire, then we feel like they care about us.
               To feel like we are admired, the primary fuel is either Words of Affirmation or Gift Giving. The secondary fuel is Quality Time or Physical Touch. They are secondary because we can acknowledge that one or the other will fill the respective tank, but it most likely won’t fill much.
To feel like we are wanted, the primary fuel is either Quality Time or Physical Touch. A secondary fuel is Words of Affirmation. I make it secondary because we I consider Gift Giving a wildcard, because I can only think of it applying in romance. However, even in romance, the gift will probably fuel Admiration more, even if the reason for the gift is desire. On the other hand, depending on the gift, it can also convey being wanted.
               For feeling liked, pretty much everything covers this because the word is a bit broad. Not only can it mean desired, but also admired and similar. However, since we cover the other too, here will just take the Similar aspect, saying that we feel we belong. As a result then the primary fuels are Quality Time, Words of Affirmation, and whatever Love Language the recipient primarily uses.

After looking at this chart interesting things we can see after looking at the chart. First is you can understand why Hugs/Kisses and Gifts are popular since they are the easiest to do and can potentially fill every tank. Of course, in reality, some people don’t need gifts and some people don’t want to be touched. However, according to the chart, Quality Time is the best in terms of coverage and degree, though how you go about it is still important. At the same time, Words of Affirmation do a great job of making someone feel liked no matter the definition.
The second interesting thing is the effect of romance on creating wildcards. This perhaps is one of the main reasons why people desire romance so much and attribute it to love, even though friendship is arguably the best example of true love. It makes Gift Giving able to convey that you are desired. It can make us assume that we are cared for. It gives us a meaning of belonging and that someone admires us. Friendship, of course, can and does cover all four, but perhaps finding that level of friendship is too difficult for some and it doesn’t cover the sexual appetite.
I hope this helps you, my child, in understanding the complex nature of love as well as how to make others feel loved. However, you must remember that just as these languages can make a person feel loved, they can also do the opposite and cause great harm. Take care to use this knowledge to promote love and you will be on your way to becoming a saint.
With Love,
N. D. Moharo