Essay by d_kaderHigh School, 12th grade March 2006

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Love is the abstract term for affection, in its most intense potency, the most exquisite positive feeling in the emotional spectrum. Love can be felt subjectively or objectively, and generally refers, but is not restricted to, interpersonal relationships. There are many types of love; romantic love, family love, platonic love and objective love, as well as love for more general concepts such as love of (a) God, or love of knowledge, love of nature, etc. Symbolically, it is recognized by the shape of a heart, and often associated with the colours pink and red. Love may or may not be reciprocated, and the word love itself is often exploited and is now part of everyday jargon, oftentimes where the feeling does not in fact exist (for example, "I love apples," where there is not substantial love). Love can be shown through contact such as hand holding, kissing, hugging and sex, but is felt emotionally more than it is shown.

Love is intangible and invisible, contains no odour or taste and cannot be heard, although a combination of all these senses are essential in detecting it. It is like a subconscious feeling that comes from within and is comforting often overwhelming. Regardless of the type of love, whether romantic, platonic or family, love remains unlike anything else that can be described.

Despite mirroring in intensity, love is unlike hate. It is unlike selfishness, for the most selfless act is to love another without condition. It is unlike discrimination, as the subconscious makes the decision of whom and what to love, and it is unlike negative feelings of spite or anathema. Love is unlike any concept that can be described in words.

What began as primitive need for reproduction, has turned into the need for human companionship and the quest for...