lovely high

faces&facadesoflove, 14"x11", graphite and pastel on Strathmore Drawing 400-series, 80-lb paper

This is my most favorite Stevie Wonder song! I first heard it almost a lifetime ago, when I was still in my elementary years. I had no idea then what the song was really all about. But its bittersweet, poignant melody, evoking melancholy, was what caught the interest of my impressionable, young ears.

Fast forward to the present time and now my adult mind could somehow understand already what Stevie was trying to say with his song. In my opinion, he’s just simply stating the obvious that when one falls in love, that person can either gain someone’s unconditional devotion or lose his/her very own heart altogether. Fate visits every single soul– sometimes, befalling even the best of us with misfortune while at the same time even showering the unheralded ones with blessings.
Yes, people do a lot of crazy things in the name of love. Some defy their relatives to be with the ones they love. And some even renounce their personal beliefs to marry the persons their hearts desire. Still, some will go to great lengths to keep the ones they love from leaving the bond, even if there was infidelity involved. Whatever the case may be, love is so powerful that one will do anything just to make it last. In more ways than one, this proves the scientific studies that have already been done about, and related to, this subject: that love, indeed, can be addicting like a drug. As such, it can cause obsession and depression in some people, especially when it concerns unrequited love. A study by Dr. Helen Fisher from Rutgers University has shown that by using a combination of MRI scans and other tests, the connection between love and addiction is evident through analyses of changes in brain activity while in the state of feeling love. It confirms the fact that love can be classified as an addiction because “the same chemical changes occur in the brain with love as they do with drug use.” Furthermore, during the first stages of love, risk-taking is heightened as a result of a “high” brought about by euphoria which, in turn, overpowers the two individuals involved as they are completely absorbed in each other. This behavior is the result of the brain’s limbic system affecting the neurotransmitter levels. Under ideal conditions, this part of the brain helps control behavior by preventing obsession and impulses. And yet, as stated earlier, the overpowering drive of love can easily alter this normal behavior. As one can see, love has the power to control reason. It can be a most majestic feeling that is worth experiencing and fighting for. However, the reality of losing it, sadly, is also just as real. As Stevie sang it, “All is fair in love…”
The irony about love is not in its shortcoming when two people fall out of it, for love is inherently good. The failing lies in the couple partaking it. In short, one of them (or both) failed to live up to love’s biblical promises as mentioned in 1 Corinthians 13 and Mark 10:8-9. I believe that when these sacrosanct verses are practiced, no pride or temptation or wickedness can overpower the love shared by every couple.

u 'n' i, 11"x8.5", graphite, pastel and crayon on Winsor & Newton 65-lb paper

Love is just a word until someone comes along and gives it meaning.” –Author unknown.