“When He Shall Die, Take Him And Cut Him Out In Little Stars, And He Will Make The Face Of Heaven So Fine That All The World Will Be In Love With Night, And Pay No Worship To The Garish Sun.”
~ William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
Who doesn’t dig love?
It’s the best, awesomest thing ever.
It’s a marvelously epic event of Shakespearian proportions. It’s an E-Ticket to ride. The Taylor-Burton diamond. The Taj Mahal.
When it’s genuine, it’s like a fast and furious landslide into dreamy, sugar-coated oblivion, and more delicious than a boatload of brownies, or butterscotch blondies, if it’s a hot summer day.
Summer is approaching. It’s almost impossible to be depressed, gloomy or heartbroken in the season of garden picnics and mango iced teas. Peaches—the sexiest fruit—are at their juiciest. Casablanca Lilies are in bloom. Just today, I saw a woman walking with an actual parasol.
And there’s a certain something in the air that makes a person feel super randy. I just want to run around barefoot and make out with everyone. I love it when it’s hot as hell—I get that lovesick summertime fever. What a lovely way to burn.
According to a Swedish proverb, a life without love is like a year without summer.
They make it sound so… ghastly. And by the way, I can’t stand being cold. And I’m not alone. You’ll notice the hippies didn’t call it The Winter Of Love. Little girls certainly don’t dream of a chilly January wedding at The Plaza.
When I was young I dreamed of meeting my soul mate. It would be love at first sight. Total infatuation. Mutual worship. I would look in his eyes and whisper things like, “I was ready for you lifetimes ago, my love.”
And he would reply, “Now that we’ve found each other, we will never be apart again.”
I picture us by the ocean, in front of a blazing bonfire, and The Beach Boys’ “God Only Knows“ would play every time we kissed. The stars above would dance and twinkle for us with giddy delight.
And after what felt like eons of wait, I could finally say I had found my one and only.
The ancient philosophers believed our fate is written in the stars. There are more than a billion in our galaxy; over half of those are “double stars,” held together by gravity and orbiting together around a common celestial body. They are also known as “twin flames.” Companions for life.
Plato philosophized about love and soul mates 2,500 years ago in his text The Symposium. The story centers around a drinking party, where each man attempts to outperform the last with a convincing speech on the nature of love. (Think of The Aristocrats, but with togas, and maybe a little less raunchy.) In it, Plato wrote about a wacky looking androgynous human being, with four arms, four legs and two heads. Fearing the power of this strange twosome, Zeus ordered them to be cut in half. They were divided into male and female and destined to search for each other over countless lives.
“… and when one of them meets the other half, the actual half of himself, the pair are lost in an amazement of love and friendship and intimacy and one will not be out of the other’s sight even for a moment…”
So, my hopeless romantics, your other half has been out there, roaming around the planet, ever since you were unceremoniously sawed off from each other. They’ve probably been searching every bar and trolling every internet dating site for you. And when you eventually meet back up, big daddy in the sky will melt the two of you back together, taking both halves and making one whole soul. And the burning desire you have to reunite and be together and live and die together—you’ll never guess what it’s called.
L. O. V. E.
Ten years ago I got a job bartending in a Hollywood nightclub. There was a man who worked there, who also grew up by the ocean far away in a land down under, where the seasons are the opposite of ours here in L.A. and where they speak in curious rhyming slang. Back at home, this man would imagine making his way to L.A. one day, playing music and maybe hanging out with a blonde California girl.
We worked together for over six years, never really getting to know each other. And on a particularly warm July night, off in a corner shrouded in a cloak of darkness, I shared a secret kiss with this tall, handsome exotic man. Time stood still. The angels sang out and the Gods high-fived.
I had one overwhelming thought: I know you…
And there we were, melting, desiring, and becoming one again, like two scoops of sweet, sugary ice cream on a sweltering afternoon.
So here’s to fate, passion and hot summer nights. ‘Cuz it’s not the light I need, baby. It’s the fire—the burning flame of the sun and the stars.
“If Hephaestus, son of Zeus, were to ask the pair: ‘do you desire to be wholly one, always day and night to be in one another’s company? For if this is what you desire, I am ready to melt you into one and let you grow together, so that being two you shall become one, and after your death in the world beyond you will still be one departed soul instead of two — I ask whether this is what you lovingly desire?’ And there is not a man or woman of them who, when they heard the proposal, would not acknowledge that this melting into one another, this becoming one instead of two, was the very expression of their ancient need. And the reason is that human nature was original one and we were a whole, and the desire and pursuit of the whole is called love.”
~Plato, The Symposium
Editor: Brianna Bemel
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