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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Same Romance, New Seduction

As I walked around a place called "The Village" this morning I saw an ad in a sporting goods store window. I have no idea what the ad was for. But the tag line was in big letters and read "Same romance, new seduction." As I walked around enjoying the fresh mountain air, I started to think about those words in the window. Usually we associate romance with that butterfly fluttering feeling we experience while we interact within a special relationship. Romance is an investment of time and energy that often yields a deep emotional return. We often confuse romance with Love, acceptance, and the feeling of completeness. Romance is simply the pursuit of such things. I started to mentally wrestle with this process of romance. I asked myself questions like, “how do I romance?”, “what do I romance?”, and “have I been effective in my romantic efforts?”

So what can we put in place of those words, the "same romance." What is it in life that we romance? I thought of a ton of stuff. But everything I thought of brought me back to that foundational feeling of newness, being alive, feeling accepted and valued. Whether it is relationships, a new “toy” or adventure seeking, it comes back to experiencing an emotion that comes from deep inside and makes me feel like I can meet some internal need if I pursue this or that.

As an example, I will use the item that has been recently seducing me: a new mountain bike. Now mind you, I have three mountain bikes hanging in my garage. But these new ones are so seductive. Light weight, faster gearing, better suspension, and they look so cool. What will I do to get one of these babies into my garage? Why do I feel like I need another bike? I can reason that the new bike will get me back out on the mountain and is safer for me to ride. Same romance of riding in the mountains with a new seduction of looking cool and that I can only be accepted by other bikers if I look as cool as them.

Now let us take this back into the realm of relationships. What is it that drives us to pursue inter-relational romances and create new ways to seduce such experiences from life? What is it, exactly, that we are pursing with such endeavors? What is it that seems to fade with familiarity that we think we can replace with a newer version of the same thing? Is the appeal of romance embraced by our drive to acquire?

Thoughts?

2 comments:

His Girl Friday said...

I think you hit on something regarding human nature. You seem to give account that we are guided by a sense of self-gratification, our passions guide our behaviors. Then, there's the question of a person having an innate sense of morality in that should he/she should not only better their own life, but of those around them. I think there are levels of functioning within human beings dependant upon various factors of environment, culture, and upbringing. I think everyone wants 'to have it better'....but how does a person go about getting there...what makes an Albert Schweitzer versus, say a Fidel Castro. (examples off the top of my head, but hopefully making a point).
I like this quote by Adam Smith, in his Wealth of Nations (which I have not read, only read about)...
"The natural effort of every individual to better his own condition...is so powerful a principle, that it is alone, and without any assistance, not only capable of carrying on the society to wealth and prosperity, but of surmounting a hundred impertinent obstructions with which the folly of human laws too often incumbers its operations."

On a side note, you speak of inter-personal relationships, not with things, but with people. What keeps two people married and not straying for the lifetime of that relationship versus the partner who strays elsewhere...is it an innate moral sense to be faithful, a creativity within the relationship to keep it vibrant, a basis of friendship and respect...or perhaps a combination?! It's said human beings are complex...but is it a complex simplicity of 'needs' needing to be met? I think I'm leaving with more questions than answers on this round, TB! :)

Talking Bear said...

HGF, Great questions. I am going to hold off on my answers for a bit and give the other SBH readers a chance to respond. I think some of the readers will have some great insight on these questions. In the mean time you may want to take a look at the left side column and read the needs, beliefs and behaviors posts. TB

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