Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Darwin and Valentine

Today is Darwin Day and this day aims to commemorate the anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin on 12 February 1809. The day is used to highlight Darwin's contribution to science and to promote science in general. Today is Darwin’s 205th birthday. The day after tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. The day honoring Saint Valentine, a widely recognized third-century Roman saint commemorated on February 14 and associated since the High Middle Ages with a tradition of courtly love.

Both believers and the non-believers do believe in “love”, no doubt. True, “love” is a more than physical response or biological reaction among humans. For all of us, regardless of our religion, beliefs, creed, nationality, physical appearances, sex and other differences; love is real and not a just myth. To put it more accurately, all humans are believers of love as a concept, feeling or action. Only for the non-believers, all of life is only sensory, only material, thus love is just a biochemical event.

Despite of this, there are people, especially those who favors science over faith, does not believe in anything spiritual or metaphysical. For them, we just evolved from animals so “love” is just evidence that we, humans possess certain instinct or hormones (especially sex hormones!) that are common to animals, our true ancestors. According to those who follow this line of thinking, whenever we express or show love or affection towards another human being, this has nothing to do with spiritual or metaphysical realms and we are just verbalizing our instinct being the highest form of animal to preserve our specie as we evolve as human beings. This is the scientific explanation, according to them, that has evidences in science and not just superstition. For them, nothing is sacramental, metaphysical or spiritual in a loving relationship. But we both agree that love is real. I root love in the soul and its connection with the body, the connection between the metaphysical and the physical and our relationship with God and fellowmen contextualized in the things happening around us. Love, for me, is physical evidence of faith and of spirituality and it goes all the way of all other things and all aspects of life and all experiences of living.

When I get home on Valentine’s Day and I am going to hug my wife and because I am a believer, that way, I am not only expressing my love to my  most cherished and my most favorite organic matter or biochemical mass or my favorite species in the planet whose ancestors are apes. It’s an outright unromantic and idiotic and it does not look like and feel like love. Looking and thinking that way towards my wife, my beloved, would be crazy, if not absurd!

After that, maybe, my wife would whisper to me her “I love you” and give me a kiss that would remind us of our wedding some twenty years ago. In her “I love you”, because she’s a believer, she is not simply expressing her latest interior emotional sensation which is subject to change at any moment for any reason. Her sincere “I love you” to me is as solid as a rock that could be liquefied only through tedious process and extreme circumstances that are beyond imagination. That “I love you” cannot be a profession of the unreliable and the unstable feelings.

This Valentine’s Day, may we reminded of these words from Frank Conin : “Love may be the nearest, most obvious, most unmistakable proof of God’s existence.” It may be true that Valentine’s Day originates from paganism and many Darwinians are atheists. Pagans and atheists, like Christians and other believers, all I know, are also capable of loving and being loved in return...

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