Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Platonic love, or a Platonic relationship

Holding hands
Originally uploaded by manganite.
Platonic love, says wikipedia, in its modern popular sense is an affectionate relationship into which the sexual element does not enter, especially in cases where one might easily assume otherwise. A simple example of platonic relationships is a deep, non-sexual friendship between two heterosexual people of the opposite sexes.

At the same time, this interpretation is a misunderstanding of the nature of the Platonic ideal of love, which from its origin was that of a chaste but passionate love, based not on lack of interest but virtuous restraint of sexual desire.

In its original Platonic form, this love was meant to bring the lovers closer to wisdom and the Platonic Form of Beauty. It is described in depth in Plato's Phaedrus and Symposium.

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