Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

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Summerlander
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Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby Summerlander » 23 Dec 2014 19:53

Evolutionary economist Robert Frank asserts the rationale for the phenomenon of romantic love in the unruly marketplace of human mate-finding. This rationale is largely free-floating, not necessarily something that romantic people are aware of, a possible strategic meme which was naturally selected. Frank points out that search is costly and therefore it is rational to settle on a partner before having examined all potential candidates. So parties make a binding commitment to remain in a relationship. Hence marriage which religion has monopolised. Yes, it us true that people make assessments but there has to be some sort of initial attraction and the bond we call love is certainly natural but not rational.

As Steven Pinker says, "Murmuring that your lover's looks, earning power, and IQ meet your minimal standards would probably kill the romantic mood, even though the statement is statistically true. The way to a person's heart is to declare the opposite - that you're in love because you can't help it."

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"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

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nesgirl
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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby nesgirl » 24 Dec 2014 00:10

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Summerlander
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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby Summerlander » 24 Dec 2014 03:30

There are some points you make that I agree with and some I disagree. Thank you for replying here and for hitting me with as much as you can muster. I do want to see guns blazing, so to speak, within the context of a civilised discourse.

I do understand your concerns about marriage begetting victimisation and divorce. I get that. My parents are divorced. But we cannot turn a blind eye to successful marriages because they tell us that they can work given the right ingredients. Please note that my usage of the term marriage here is meant to be loose, not solely including the matrimonial, but also including all tete-a-tete romantic relationships - the "marriage" of two sexual individuals.

As Frank pointed out, being picky can be costly. You will soon run out of time as you encounter all sorts of hurdles: candidates which may truly be suitable might not reciprocate (unrequited love); candidates that seem to be suitable may be deceiving you and it's a trap as much as you think you know them; candidates that don't look like "soulmates" may in fact be the best suited. I'm not saying don't make assessments. By all means be observant and tread carefully. What I am saying is that one should not go looking for it, one should just deal with whatever comes one's way.

First, are you attracted to the person you meet? If not, don't bother. If yes, get to know them. After a certain period of time do you like what you see? If yes, continue seeing your lover, it might lead to something better. If you have to divorce them later - because let's face it, people can change - then so be it. You are living your life. Divorce, of course, also used in a broad sense. Part ways if you must.

You may highlight the perils of romance if you wish, but anyone can be victimised anywhere. Asexuals and singles are no exception. Friendships can also go awry. Strangers can also be dangerous. So why avoid romance? Why avoid something which doesn't necessarily lead to disaster? What stops sexuals from avoiding even flings? Fear of taking risks? Cowardice? How about trying to live your life without fear? Being picky in a quest for a suitable partner can be wearisome and time-consuming. Just chill and get to know someone you meet which you happen to find attractive. That is all there is to it. Does this person want the same things that you want? What are you after? Just a sexual relationship or something more? Does your potential partner share the same interests? These are all questions that can be asked and answered with sincerity from the start.

If you don't know who you're going to end up with, you find out. Get to know the person. As you've just admitted, you don't know anything about romance so how can you be so sure that it needs to be avoided - possibly even outlawed? There is a saying: Better to have loved and lost than to not have loved at all!

Think about the lessons you can learn. Try it and once you've been there for a while then perhaps you can more firmly conclude that it is truly not for you. If really and intrinsically do not feel that way inclined, as an asexual, fair enough, but don't be so right-wing about the rest of us who enjoy sex and certainly don't impose your lifestyle upon others because you think yours is safest or ours is morally reprehensible. Love, I'll admit, is blind. You can't help who you fall for. But you can remind yourself of this truth and think with your head - it is in your best interests...

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"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby nesgirl » 25 Dec 2014 07:37

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Enra Traz
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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby Enra Traz » 26 Dec 2014 01:25

Ok, in terms of risk, there is a lot that we actually agree on. Correct me if I'm wrong, but, do you find romance to be delusive against a somewhat Kafkaesque world? And what would you think if I propounded to you that perhaps your personal experiences turned you into a cynic to the extent that the world now seems deplorable enough to render romance naively incompatible with it? If this is your view and things really are that way, objectively, then, on the basis that romantic people won't stop feeling romantic, a middle ground between romanticism and classicism may be the answer. The cliched advice tends to be, "Think with your head, not your heart" which is fine, but you may still feel with your heart (which you can't help anyway) and decide what you are going to do about it.

Sexual people also cannot help how they feel. Supposing that their sexual lifestyles will lead to unhappiness given the way our world is, then surely it must be logical to think of sex as some sort of intrinsic disorder or an ill. Like ADHD is thought of as a disorder now (but was once useful, believe it or not, when the most impulsive of our ancestors firstly dared to leave the African continent and led the way for those who did not share the genetic boon).

So let me reiterate the question to you. Do you believe that sex is outdated and something that should no longer be because it is detrimental to us in the general sense. If you regard sex and romance as factors that fault human nature, how do you propose we solve this perceived problem? Why eradicate sex and only have friendships (when these need work too and can go wrong) when there are sexual relationships out there, however few there are, which actually do work? Why not study these that do work and write a manual emphasising what is required to make it work? And then, once most sexual and romantic relationships start working, the argument that casts sex as an abhorrent disorder simply falls apart.

In this manner, asexuals can form healthy relationships with like-minded asexuals, and sexual people can consensually invaded one another's spaces, as you've put it.

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Summerlander
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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby Summerlander » 26 Dec 2014 02:29

Oh look! I did it again as Enra Traz! Bloody phone. I'll add a few things to my argument as Summerlander anyway.

Loyalty and trust is also what many sexual people look for when they want to settle down and sometimes they get lucky in securing long-term relationships. Imagine yourself as a sexual romantic. If you are going to embark upon commitment, you need to give your partner the benefit of the doubt, and this means both parties regarding each other as trustworthy even if that's not the case. The rule of thumb is, innocent until proven guilty. If you don't follow this principle, of course it will never work. People with trust issues should not be in relationships and yes, in life everything carries an element of risk - so "What if, what if...?" is never a good way to live your life. You could be missing many opportunities to learn grow and prosper if you let your fears get in the way. If, however, you are quite content to not let anybody in because you are truly repulsed by it as an asexual, fair enough.

I would also remind you that you don't need to marry people to be with them. And if you decide that a ceremony would convey great meaning or symbolically represent your official union, you don't need a church. My wedding was a secular one, at the registry office, and the law recognises it even if the Church doesn't. (But what do I care, right? I'm an atheist and my wife is agnostic.)

I also didn't know that Guitar is asexual, but if that's the case, this commonality could mean the start of a good friendship between the two of you. But I am sure that a bear can savage you in ways that a human being can't. If you try karate against a human aggressor, your chances of winning are greater than they would be if you were up against a wild animal that could easily crush a human being to death in a second. So I don't buy that animals are morally superior to humans malarkey. Animals are largely irrational and inferior to humans. (Bearing in mind that I know we are animals, too, but we are endowed with the power of language and ratiocination.)

By the way, not all romantics have that stupid look in their eyes. I know what you are talking about. Some of us sexuals are more mature, disciplined, and balanced. This is where a healthy dose of classicism to offset the potential for encroaching romantic moves might be a good call. (This is me taking steps to perhaps meet you in the middle but this is as far as I go, meaning, perhaps you have a few concessions to make, eg. romantics are not that bad or not all romantics are like the ones I've encountered.)

Let's also examine those sexuals who could do with some self-restraint. They usually have one or two intrinsic problems. Either they think they are behaving according to etiquette, or they don't care (wrong attitude), or - pardon my punctiliousness - they believe negative signals signify the opposite (naively mistaken).

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"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby nesgirl » 05 Jan 2015 02:23

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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby Summerlander » 05 Jan 2015 17:57

nesgirl wrote:I feel like romance isn't necessary and many romantic relationships often lead to hurtful, distrustful, and/or abusive relationships. This is why I do not believe in such anymore.


I also feel that humanity could learn to do without religion, and that religion can lead to danger, but lots of people feel otherwise and would attest to religious beliefs and practice providing rich and fulfilling lives. I fully endorse freedom of religious expression (especially the moderate, ecumenical or reformed kind which is compatible with civilised society) as long as it doesn't encroach on the rights and way of life of secularists.

nesgirl wrote:I honestly don't think you feel anything with your heart at all. And I don't think we are really feeling love in the least. I mean why do most relationships end in divorce to begin with? I think it is exactly the same thing as with animals. Romance only exists to push us to repopulate our species, and nothing less. I mean, if you look at most species of animals, what happens after they have a romantic moment? Typically they dump each other (or the female will kill the male like with the praying mantis and the spider).


We are not arachnids and therefore sexual cannibalism is not something that is prevalent in our species. I am sure there is an evolutionary reason for why it occurs in certain species but let's not focus on that. As I have explained before, romantic relationships are not advantageous at all in the reproductive proliferation of human beings. In fact, the lothario or philanderer often puts his sperm to good use as he spreads his seed and runs. The romantic family guy is a biological waste. Evolution is blind and often haphazard. But we humans can invent our reasons for doing things in search of happiness. Hence romance is meaningful to a lot of people. Your argument against romance is moot here. (And not just the bit about what arachnids get up to.)

nesgirl wrote:Originally, when we were bacteria, we reproduced via pathogenesis. Also I believe when we were reptiles, we might have done exactly the same thing. Our species seemed to function in a very slow peaceful way when we actually reproduced in this way.


Nothing ever stays the same and there is a reason why things change. In time, ecological pressures metamorphosed living organisms into what we see today. It's called evolution.

nesgirl wrote:Once you've protected this person who keeps getting victimized a few times, you might be able to actually open that person up a little and get know them. It may be very hard at first to convince them to go anywhere with you, especially if that person's an introvert or a pessimist (or both). After a while (might be years) and you manage to convince them you mean no harm and you manage to weave your acquaintanceship into a friendship within that timespan, you may be able to become queerplatonic friends.


"May be able to become..." How is this different from saying a romantic, sexual couple might become an item? Everything deals in uncertainties, nesgirl. You take risks whatever path you take but if you refuse to take them you are simply not living. By the way, I'd like to see your proposition working with a sociopath.

nesgirl wrote:Sorry, but I don't believe in getting married. Too much responsibility.


Of course it's a responsibility. What did you expect? But you make it official and here in the UK you lawfully get more privileges than couples who are not married. It's just the way it is. But if you are going to get married you better be sure that the person you are with is the right one. That's all there is to it.

nesgirl wrote:Yes actually that makes it really easy. Because in fact he is a Sonic fan. Sonic is an Aromantic Asexual character. Actually a human aggressor could deal a lot worse damage to you than a bear. There are fates far worse than getting crushed in 1 swipe. And say maybe there were 3 human aggressors. The bear wouldn't rape you for example. And if the bear killed you in one swipe, at least the bear would have the decency of eating your corpse so there wouldn't be any mess left.


Animals commit rape, too. In fact, most of what they do to their own and other species is a form of rape. They lack compassionate expression as their self-preservation instinct, given their niche, has no room for altruism.

nesgirl wrote:With human attackers, they would rape you, they might rip pieces of your body off. They might burn your body with acid or even fire. I could name all the various awful tortures a person could do an animal wouldn't do, which you would probably be out of pain and dead a lot sooner than with a human torturing you.


Most humans don't behave like that. I could also tell you about species of animals whose venom would leave you in agony and wishing you were dead. And all members of those species would unleash the venom. As for the forms of anthropic torture that animals wouldn't do? I think you mean types of torture that animals can't do because they obviously don't have the capability nor the nous for it. You have not shown that animals are on higher moral ground at all. Just that they are inferior. And let me append: humans save more animal lives than the other way around. Again, animals are inferior in this respect.

nesgirl wrote:And many animals are predators, and would most likely eat you, so no corpse left behind. Whereas if you got murdered by your own species, they would probably hide your corpse somewhere and might either preserve it or burn it.


It would be gross and dangerous to their health if the murderers decided to eat their victims. Many cannibal tribes died out because they did just that to their rivals. Diseases like kuru got them. Evolution has "taught" us that being grossed out about many things can save our lives. Right now you may be able to feel your own saliva in your mouth and be okay with it. But try to spit in a glass and then drink it. Anything external is gross or so we feel most of the time. This is not an accident and can certainly be explained by Darwinism. Animals, who are inferior, mostly don't care. If they eat corpses, it is because they are hungry - not because they wish to honour the dead victim. :twisted:
"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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nesgirl
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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby nesgirl » 06 Jan 2015 06:19

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Summerlander
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Re: Robert Frank shows why Romance is Natural

Postby Summerlander » 08 Jan 2015 20:54

What the shit are you talking about, nesgirl? I'm an atheist and I find purpose in raising my kids. I also find purpose in doing fun things with my wife apart from hobbies like reading and writing and creating art. I also enjoy learning about science and its discoveries. The universe is amazing enough to keep people alive. Reality is richer than religious fiction and I'd rather have sex knowing that the probability of a psychotic supernatural all-powerful monster watching me is next to zilch.

By the way, saying something is an illusion is not the same as saying it doesn't exist. It means it is not what it seems. Consciousness is an illusion (and yet we are conscious). Happiness is an illusion (and yet many of us experience it and say, "I'm so happy!").

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"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava


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