I am feeling perplexed about this thing called love recently. There seems to be different or varying levels of this emotion. At least within me. Can you care about someone and not love them? Is this just liking someone? What if you need to tell someone something, that you don't love, but it hurts you to think you are going to hurt them? Is it love to put their feelings first, or is just another kind of caring? Does it mean you have feelings for this person, or you are just empathetic? Can you fall out of love, or does it just change? Was it love to begin with or something else? What is it to be "in love?" I looked up some definitions of love. But i have more to say on the subject. I will do so in a later post.
Courtly love – a late medieval conventionalized code prescribing certain conduct and emotions for ladies and their lovers
Erotic love – desire characterized by sexual desires
Familial love – affection brokered through kinship connections, intertwined with concepts of attachment and bonding
Free love – sexual relations according to choice and unrestricted by marriage
Platonic love – a close relationship in which sexual desire is nonexistent or has been suppressed or sublimated
Puppy love – romantic affection that is not "mature" or not "true." The term reflects a bias that love between youngsters is somehow less valid.
Religious love – devotion to one's deity or theology
Romantic love – affection characterized by a mix of emotional and sexual desire
True love - love without condition, motive or attachment. Simply loving someone for the sake of loving them
Unrequited love – affection and desire not reciprocated or returned
Dictionaries tend to define love as deep affection or fondness. In colloquial use, according to polled opinion, the most favoured definitions of love include the words:
life - someone or something for which you would give your life.
care - someone or something about which you care more than yourself.
In common use, care refers to a mental or emotional state of predisposition in which one has an interest or concern for someone or something. To care for someone, may also refer to a disquieted state of mixed uncertainty, apprehension, and responsibility; or a cause for such anxiety
Love is a condition or phenomenon of emotional primacy, or absolute value. Love generally includes an emotion of intense attraction to either another person, a place, or thing; and may also include the aspect of caring for or finding identification with those objects, including self-love. Love can describe an intense feeling of affection, an emotion or an emotional state. In ordinary use, it usually refers to interpersonal love, an experience usually felt by a person for another person. Love is commonly considered impossible to define.
The concept of love, however, is subject to debate. Some deny the existence of love, calling it a recently invented abstraction. Others maintain that love exists but is indefinable; being a quantity which is spiritual, metaphysical, or philosophical in nature. The views that love does not exist or is indefinable may underlie the fact that approximately 13 percent of cultures have no word for love.   The remaining 87 percent attempt to define this abstract concept and apply it to everyday life. Love is one of the most common themes in art and often times is an excuse for " bad art". Some psychologists maintain that love is the abstract action of lending one's "boundary" or "self esteem" to another.
Now I do love others, many others that I know. But all is different. I love each for different reason, or same reasons, but each is different.
Now to address the soulmate question;