Daily Archives: December 15, 2016

A Venn Diagram Theory of Love

I met my husband when I was 21.

At the time I was sort of specifically trying to avoid romantic entanglements, having just ended a serious relationship, changed jobs and moved across the country. On the drive from Vancouver to St. John’s, I stopped in on an old friend in Halifax and together we ironed out what I like to call the Venn Diagram Theory of Love.

Plato discusses one theory on love in “Symposium” which considers the union between two people as a convergence of two halves of the same thing:

“Love is born into every human being; it calls back the halves of our original nature together; it tries to make one out of two and heal the wound of human nature.”

Not to say that I’m smarter than Plato, but I disagree on this particular point. To me, in ideal circumstances, the best of love is when two wholes converge to share a part of themselves with one another, thus making a:


See what I mean?

Both separate, both equal, both retaining a part of themselves, but joined at the middle, creating something together. This kind of love is less frantic, less striving, than the kind Plato describes. Rather than wandering around incomplete, the ideal seeker of this kind of love is doing their thing, feeling fine, practicing santosha (contentment) and then BAM- along comes another complete circle and they see where they might like to overlap.

So there I was, minding my own business, and into my life wandered this man. And we found we had a few places where our circles crossed. And five years later we had the clearest delineation of our shared love enter our lives:

I think the theory works.